Friday, November 10, 2017

NOT me, too.

NOT me, too!

Wherein the Wicked Witch is determined to be Pro-Rape Culture by the Over-Informed and the Under-Experienced





     Although I survived a brutal sexual assault in my teens, and I'm a third generation feminist, I have been watching the exponential revelations of sexual abuse with both overwhelming sympathy and a need for better solutions than mere outrage can effect.   I am concerned that this mob mentality has ramifications that are in conflict with actually solving the problem of sexual abuse.  Worse, the demand for new language, new stilted behaviors, is an assault on our cherished freedom of expression.  Why we can't just punish the living shit out of those who have committed crimes, and allow each individual respond to speech as they see fit, is beyond me.
      I did not "me, too."  I have nothing but empathy and pride for the women who choose to take power in the act. I hope the trend creates some comfort.   I just found my power a different way.   However,  not following suit is NOT an indication of a lack of support, although in the Social Justice Warrior World, the omission of saying something is the same as saying the reverse of something,  Yet more irony.  The people who want to make a lack of language mean something are the same as those who want to monkey with language in the first place.
      I confess that I am old enough to have determined that every decade brings a new "root of all evil."  I know.  Everyone lays that at money's door.  A stronger case could be made for the lack of it, but I'm talking societal ills.  This is the decade of social media.  We don't need no stinkin' voting booths or Letters to the Editor anymore.  Egalitarianism run amok.  It would be a fun joke if it wasn't so powerful.  As a result I am now privy to the heretofore private thoughts of every-fucking-body.
     I  have always enjoyed Rose McGowan's work.  I have , even more, enjoyed her devotion to Boston Terriers and their rescue.  She has always come across as talented, smart, quirky, and tough in all the right ways.  The fact that this powerful, disgusting, criminal assaulted her is no one's fault but his.  She was the victim and now she is the survivor.  He was, is, and will be unto death a colossal piece of shit who deserves dying.  Clear?  Am I in anyway supporting this foul wretch of a  partial birth abortion?  Obviously not,
But...
     I confess that I, apparently, maintain a very unpopular, um, sub-position.  My position on sexual assault is life in prison or death.  My position on sexual harassment is firing, fining, and shaming.  My sub-position is that it is wrong to take settlements with non-disclosure agreements in lieu of prosecution/reporting.  Yup. Very unpopular.  I am being accused of being  "Pro Rape Culture."  Me.  Holy fuck, what is wrong with you people?
     My belief is  that a person who signs a non-disclosure agreement  has done a disservice to later victims.  This doesn't negate their victimization or support the victimizer.   This is about protecting the next potential victim.
      Now a victim can understandably say, "fuck them.  This is my tragedy and I'll deal with it in my own way."  Completely cool.  The traumatized may need to shut this door fast and effectively.  Yet, having done that, you might want to check your credentials before preaching "sisterhood" and starting a social media army.
     I'm saying all this talk of sisterhood is just so much drivel.  I'm saying that it is a lip-service slogan that means exactly however many words we can tweet.  Sisterhood is becoming an enormous cyber gender-creature that has, it seems, no concept of what sisters do for each other.  Sisters don't let their sisters walk directly into the lion's den without warning.  They especially don't take cash to keep their sisters in the dark and vulnerable.  I have 3 daughters.  I know what lengths sisters will go to  fight for each other.
      If I were to choose the sisters to battle 40,000 years of male sexual domination, particularly what sort of sisters could lead such a movement, I would not choose women who made the personal choice to keep quiet when quiet guaranteed more victims.  I would not choose anyone who has a problem with curiosity.  I would not choose someone who's final goal is to create a social media movement, rather than end sexual abuse.  Outrage is, as my best buddy reminds me, "cheap heat."
        I am being told I am pro-Rape Culture. I can't even comprehend why a criminal behavior is being glamorized into a "culture" by the very people in danger.  This kind of bullshit language is part of the problem.  It is condescending to those who are no such thing, and allows some college kid to feel entitled to tell experienced humans that we are somehow oblivious to our micro-aggression, thus we potentially trigger people   At this point I want to trigger people.  Is it just me or are the people demanding others to take responsibility the same who claim they or others can be triggered? 
     If women are demanding that men should have spoken up/acted, then, in the name of social equality and the notion of responsibility, we must say the same for women.   If women demand that men (not the abusers but the poor fucks being called collaborators) change their behavior to protect women, then are we not already deferring to them?  How can we demand from others what we are unwilling to do for others, ourselves?
      With apologies to Rose and her army, they are asking to be both empowered and protected/sheltered at the same time.  They think tweeting is "fighting"---kind of like King Douchebag.  In this country fighting is done in the courts.  If the courts won't play fair we use our economic strength and power to change the system.  If the system won't change to make women safer we use our experience to share what we know with those we love.  What we cannot do, what we should never do, is  legally bind our mouths shut and spend a few decades knowing that others are being victimized.  Hey....the money isn't even the issue.  These women deserved the cash and more.  It is the Non-Disclosure Agreements.  They might as well be called  the "Rape-the-Next-Chick Agreements."
     Today's rightfully angry young women are WAY over-informed, and when challenged on their "facts" they become defensive to the point of anger.  They take either a confrontational or a dismissive position to anyone who doesn't parrot back the new language of victims.  They have dismissed experience as superfluous, unless it is echoed online by whatever nobody has posted some dubious stats.  They think critical thinking takes place reading posts online.
They think their movement will bring about a Utopian society where no one's feelings are ever hurt.  They shriek against fascism but fail to see that legislating, even figuratively,  what people say, and not what they do, is in direct conflict with freedom..  Worse, it diminishes the first amendment, which evidently needed the addendum "Even language that hurts your feelings is protected, and you'll be glad of it because it will help you identify assholes."
      I confess to not wanting to live in a place where everyone lies and puts on a Stepford mask in order to prevent inexperienced, pseudo-informed, fanatics from losing their shit.  Most of all, none of this ridiculous language does anything to stop sexual abuse!  So if calling me Pro-Rape Culture makes you wet (yup, offensive as fuck, huh?) have at it.  I'm looking for a real revolution for women where we can be led by experience and not vitriol.  I won't join me, too because I believe one should only join things that  one wants as a representation of who they are.*  I refuse to be defined by things done to me.  I will be defined by my own choices and actions.

her, too:

   
       A fifteen year old girl has been sexually abused, physically beaten, and completely terrorized for half her life.  She has been informed that if she ever tells he will kill the entire family.  His previous actions lend huge amounts of credence to that threat.  It takes 2 years after the initial report to bring the case to disposition.  Those years are filled with statements, depositions, embarrassment and shame.  Life stops moving.  The child can't grow until this is concluded.
      In court, to discuss the terms of a plea agreement, that girl--a child, stood in front of a judge, a prosecutor, the family of her attacker, a smarmy defense attorney, as well as her own family, and her attacker.  He was less than 10 feet from her.  She had truths she had to say for legal reasons.  While the  judge was encouraging,  her attacker stood in court, facing years in prison, and laughed at her.  He ridiculed her pain, minimized her terror, and although pleading guilty maintained his innocence, despite taking the same from at least 3 other children.   He was a monster who was sent to prison, unable to hurt anyone for years, thanks to the sheer bravery, the integrity and decency of a 15 year old child.
     Ladies and gentlemen, if that isn't your idea of a hero, you're fucking broken.
    The women who jumped out of the frying pan and into the fire, to demand justice, or at the very least, truth, are the women, the sisters, who should lead.  No victim should ever feel shame about what was done to them.  Yet, we all are responsible for what we do, or don't do, ourselves.
      
 'Never, for the sake of peace and quiet, deny your own experience or convictions'
Dag Hammarskjod






    

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