"To be blunt, men who rape women do so for the same reason that boys who torture cats do so: Because they’ve been raised to believe that dominating others makes you a big, tough man, and they take pleasure in exerting power over this being they’ve been taught is beneath them. Most boys don’t torture animals, but we aren’t confused about those who do. Even if they do find some kind of visceral satisfaction from it, we don’t think they’re confused and simply think they’re, say, preparing a meal. When boys torture animals in groups, we know that there was probably a ringleader who used pressure to “be a man” to get the other boys to go along with it. We also know some boys torture animals in secret, taking pleasure in the conquest of these animals. If you understand why boys torture animals, you understand why teenage boys and men rape. The same codes of masculinity and sadism are underlying the behavior, and I’m guessing the overlap between the two behaviors is really high, with a lot of youthful animal torturers growing up to become sexual predators who get a thrill out of conquering women, especially considering how much more cunning you need to dominate and control a woman than an animal."