content warning: sexual assault/abuse
In the previous feels post, I wrote about some of the ways in which I felt unsafe and demoralized because of who I am and society’s current backlash against those aspects of my identity. One part of my identity is being (and/or being assigned by society to be) a woman.
My conscious mind obviously wanted to forget the issue of sexual abuse, because I didn’t even think of it. I don’t like to think of it. But it’s a prominent reason why I do not feel safe.
The obvious normalization of sexual abuse and discrimination is another scary, scary part of what is going on these days in the U.S. The person just chosen to be the next president is a sexual predator (by his own admission) who does not treat women as people and even thinks of his own daughters as sexual objects (and not even as sexual objects for other men- sexual objects for himself!). And he still won the election.
Do me a favor and replace the words “locker room talk” with “rape culture” whenever you hear them, because that’s what they actually mean. “Oh, that’s just locker room talk” = “Oh, that’s just rape culture.” Also, “boys will be boys” = “boys will be rapists”.
Why is the notallmen argument pure bullshit? Maybe not all men are rapists all the time, but men enable other men to be rapists, do not hold rapists responsible for their actions, do not pursue rapists to bring them to trial, do not think rape is of sufficient import to merit actual consequences. Men excuse rapists as a matter of course. Maybe not all men are rapists all the time, but they sure as hell do have the rapists’ backs. Men empower and defend rapists and, at the same time, shame, humiliate, blame, persecute, and punish rape victims. Maybe not all men are rapists all the time, but men sure as hell don’t treat women (etc) as equal to men, as real and valid people in their own right, as having real and valid lived experiences, as being worthy of respect or trust, as having inherent rights and worth completely separate from any “utility” to men (including the rights to their own bodies and the right to be safe). No, men pretty much act as if they believe the OPPOSITE of that, and also that women are the source of all evil in the world and everything is women’s fault. “Bros before hos” = “rape culture”.
I’ve been sexually abused and raped; I’ve been in prolonged sexually abusive situations. Nobody has ever been brought to justice- hah- nobody would even consider there was anything wrong with what I went through. And this is the status quo.
That’s how things stand now.
That and the fact that women (etc) are still not given equal pay for equal work, are still not promoted (or even hired) according to their ability, are still not taken as seriously as men in any way whatsoever
even if you’re the most highly qualified presidential candidate in the history of the United States with a life-long history of service and success
the people will still choose the least qualified candidate in the history of the United States (with absolutely no experience of service whatsoever and a history of repeated serial failures)
because he is a man and you are a woman
and also they will absolutely hate and vilify you forever with no basis whatsoever except that you are a woman,
and they will threaten to hang you, shoot you, sexually assault you, and lock you in prison forever, because you are a woman.
So yes I am feeling a bit demoralized these days.
How do we get through that mess? How do I navigate? These are the thoughts that go through my head. (There are statistics too, but, really, at this point, they’re not even necessary.)
edited to add: this just came up in my newsfeed, and I’m feeling post happy