The war is so obviously on

Posted in Mysognistic Bullshit, Women's Bodies by Dizzy on June 4, 2007

When I was 16 years old my best friend left the homecoming football game we were at together to go to a party with another friend. I went to her house after the game and waited for her to come home. When she got there many hours later she immediately took a shower then crawled into bed next to me and cried as she told me how a guy she met offered to give her a ride home, brought her to his house, got her more drunk, and raped her in his bed. She was a virgin.

That was my first experience being with someone right after they had been assaulted. It wasn’t the last.

So I’ve made a list. In my 33 years I’ve known at least 16 women and girls that have been sexually assaulted. I’m sure there are more than that, but ‘only’ 16 of them have told me their stories.

3 of them were raped by strangers. 6 of them were date raped. 2 of them were likely drugged. 7 of them were children molested by a man they trusted, usually from within their own family. 16 women and girls just from my own small life makes for a very high rate.

None of these rapists, predators, and pedophiles, not a single one, experienced any consequences for what they had done. Each and every one of them got away with it for some reason or another.

He didn’t get erect. It’s been too long since it happened. Her story didn’t add up. She was too young to be trusted. She didn’t scream or try to fight him off. She asked him to put on a condom. She didn’t react how a rape victim ’should’ react afterwards. There wasn’t enough evidence. She was dressed like a whore. She was lying, acting out, trying to get back at him. She said yes before she said no. She was drunk.

No matter the situation, the guy got away with it every single fucking time. Until now. I hope.

The last predator asshole on that long list of predator assholes, one who somehow thought it was within his rights to fondle and kiss a 13 year old girl who had trusted and loved him since she was a young child, was arrested and charged. I think he will go to jail for a long time thanks to the awesome courage of a girl who knew, despite her reluctance to talk about it and her fear of everything about it, that he would do it again to someone else if she didn’t say anything.

Finally, someone who won’t get away with it. I have my fingers crossed too tightly.

And here is where I begin my feminist response to this bullshit:

There is war on against women that is defined by sudden or subtle and always brutal violence, sexual assault, verbal abuse, harassment, and discrimination. Can there really be any doubt about it? How can anyone think women these days have it made? Do really believe that having the right to vote and being more involved in the workplace are the same as being free from oppression? Haven’t you been paying attention?

As long as a woman is sexually assaulted every 6 minutes and 82% of these crimes go unreported, we remain oppressed. Fear of being abused by men is a mighty powerful tool, and it has been in us since someone felt the need to let us know that boys were stronger than us.

“The only identifiable risk factor for rape is being female.” -Center for Injury Prevention, 2006.

The most insidious and dangerous thing about this ugly war is not that there’s a denial that this shit happens, but that women are entirely responsible for both starting it and stopping it. It’s somehow totally our fault that men rape us and it’s our responsibility to make sure it doesn’t happen. It’s seen as nothing more than a women’s issue, not the global humanitarian crisis that it is.

As if rape were a chick-flick. Please.

So yeah, it’s apparently our responsibility to stop it, but the women who do try to do or say something, anything at all, are dismissed as bitter man-hating lesbian feminazis with boy baggage who just need a good lay. Nice.

Funny but not really how it’s only situations where a woman has been assaulted or harassed that we too-often assume that the victim is somehow more responsible for the crime than the perpetrator. Do you automatically assume that the male victim of a random street mugging is making it all up? Can you imagine dismissing the legitimacy of the crime against a man because he was dressed provocatively or had too much to drink or because he had sex with someone earlier that day?

Can you even for once second fathom thinking that sex crimes against women are wholly and entirely the fault of the man who committed the crime? Why is that such an impossible thing to believe?

Someone who found out about my 13-year old friend’s recent fucked-up experience with the old family friend 20 years older than her asked me why she didn’t scream to wake us up. I had an answer for him, but seriously, does that really matter? Why didn’t he ask me how she was dealing with things or how long the asshole who did it would be in jail for? Why, when I say “my best friend was raped by a guy at a party,” do you immediately wonder if she was drunk? Doesn’t that seem the slightest bit off to you? Do you still think that the patriarchy is some benign force that we shouldn’t mess with?

Hey ladies, you ever get the feeling that the world hates you? Like it’s trying like hell to get you to shut the fuck up, sit the fuck down, and deal with the fact that your experience as a human being will never be taken seriously? That you don’t count? That men are people and you are just a woman? That you’re supposed to be nothing more than what men see you as?

Because I do. Every fucking day. And I would bet my life on the fact that you’ve felt it too.

Maybe you felt it when you told your mom what happened that night and she asked you what you were wearing. Or when a group of boys at school demanded that you take your bra off and jump up and down in front of them. Or when you read the fat-girl story Tucker Max’s blog. Or when you scanned the tabloids in the checkout line one day 4 years ago and realized that every one of them had stories about the sex life of Kobe Bryant’s rape victim and pictures of famous women who gained or lost weight.

This is a war with the mission of maintaining the male-domination status quo by granting men the right and obligation to control our bodies and instill fear among us. When women in masses stopped being so content with being maids and baby-feeders and started wanting to participate in the public world, something had to be done to ensure that we didn’t stop men from being important and powerful. The patriarchy shifted its focus from making sure women didn’t care about the world outside their homes to exacting punishment on our bodies and souls for daring to venture out into it.

Congratulations, it’s working. It may not be as overt as it once was, but don’t doubt for a second that this war it exists. It’s become crafty, insidious, and manipulative and it’s everywhere all the time.

Men right now have a power over women that they steadfastly refuse to admit having and virtuously claim to not even want. And those are the supposed good guys.

Hey, deny it all you want boys, but it’s true. The patriarchy has granted you this power by birthright. You’re winning a war that’s been so much a part of your life since you were born that most of you don’t even have the capacity to acknowledge that it exists, much less to see that you’re winning it.

We’re not only afraid of the men we pass on the street in the dark and the boyfriend who gets overly jealous, we’re also afraid of what men will think we are when we tell them what another man did to us. Thanks for that, fuckers. The patriarchy is thriving.

Not to relieve the men who commit atrocious acts against women of their responsibility, but please just have a look at the bigger picture for one second.

In a patriarchy, women are defined by their sexual behaviors, and their bodies are part of the public domain – a domain controlled by men. These bodies seem to have actually been created and designed for men, to be looked at and used by men in whatever way they please. A woman’s personal sovereignty over her own body is invalidated in the courts and on the sidewalks and in the bedrooms of the world every second of every day. It is unsurprising that sex crimes happen with such unspeakable frequency.

When women are portrayed and treated as OBJECTS of men’s interest/desire/contempt/jealously/lust/gaze, as opposed to SUBJECTS of their own lives, as they are in any patriarchy and as should be evident by about an hour a TV-watching or magazine-reading, it is inevitable that far too many men will abuse their inherent male privilege by asserting their perceived rights to those bodies.

When female bodies essentially belong to men, it is shockingly un-shocking that the default position on sexual assault is that the man has been somehow wronged or misunderstood and that the onus is on the woman to convince the world that an actual crime has indeed taken place. If she can’t prove it to the immediate satisfaction of this woman-hating, man-loving world as controlled by the male-dominated judicial, political, familial, and media arenas, she is either a lying, vindictive slut or a self-righteous prude.

Again, shockingly un-shocking.


4 Responses

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  1. Jeffrey Deutsch said, on December 5, 2008 at 4:45 pm

    Hello Dizzy BuzzKill,

    Kudos to a courageous 13-year-old girl indeed. If I may ask, how did that case turn out?

    I myself have never asked what a rape accuser or victim had been drinking or wearing or otherwise doing to “provoke” the rapist or accused; I just never thought it was relevant. I’ve found out from conversations – with both major genders! – that apparently I’m in a minority.

    My best wishes to your other 15 friends who were sexually assaulted or raped.

    Jeff Deutsch

  2. Imaginary said, on February 15, 2010 at 9:44 am

    That’s horrible! I hope your friends know that even though some people are too stupid to see it, they are amazing and strong and wonderful. I wish them all the best.

    When I read things about men not being able to control themselves, I think “doesn’t that just prove that womin are smarter and more capable to run the world?”

    I don’t think I’ve commented on here, but I’ve read all your posts, and they’re awesome.

  3. Its like you read my mind! You appear to know so much about this, like you wrote
    the book in it or something. I think that you could do with a few pics to drive the
    message home a little bit, but instead of that, this is wonderful blog.
    A great read. I will certainly be back.

  4. Marcella said, on July 29, 2013 at 10:35 am

    This blog was… how do I say it? Relevant!! Finally I have found something which helped me.
    Many thanks!

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