Monday, September 24, 2018

Shut it Down

Yes, I am wearing black today. No, I cannot walk out because you can’t actually walk out on four year olds. Weather permitting, we will already be outside. On the playground.

Sexual harassment and sexual assault may be in the national news right now, but the response from all over the country speaks of how local these problems really are. Right here in Howard County  there are #MeToo stories. Even in our school system.

Highly recommended is this thread from Kim Weeden which concludes:

It’s a telling statement about the prevalence of sexual violence in America that women who have never been raped feel like we won the damned lottery. 

And that would be me. Sure, I’ve been catcalled and harassed but I’ve never been the victim of sexual assault. And that is not because I’m a nice girl, or a good girl, or wore “appropriate” clothing or made sure to only engage in “appropriate” behavior. It’s just luck. It’s nothing I did or didn’t do.

What kind of a life is that, living with the knowledge that at any moment you could be a victim but you just have to hope it’s the other girl and not you? Why do we treat these events as something unavoidable like the weather instead of as the outright crimes they are? And why do these particular crimes bring with them the suggestion that they were brought on by the victim?

I suspect that it’s because the rules in place are made by the powerful. And the powerful are those who want to perpetuate the notion that they are not responsible for their actions if it pertains to something “sexual”. Everyone knows you can just blame that on the woman. 

From generation to generation: blame the woman. 

And here we are again, looking at a position on the highest court if the land, and we are playing “blame the woman” once again. Enough. Enough, enough, enough.

It’s time to make it abundantly clear that the people who think this behavior is okay are not the ones who should be in a position to make the rules.

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