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misogyny

The Rio Olympics are in full swing and so is the misogyny. What if we talked about male Olympians the way we talk about female Olympians?Unfortunately, hate to say it but this week’s Throat Punch Thursday has to go to all the misogynistic men out there. No, I’m not talking to you good feminist men. You’ve got this shit handled. You understand that women are equal. You want a partner, not a slave.  You see women as people, for that I commend you.

That’s right, in this day and age, I still have to commend men who are not blind and have respect for fellow human beings because misogyny is still that rampant in our society. It happens on a daily basis, even more so than all of these police shootings of black men lately.

Aww, thank you smartphones for allowing us to reveal to the world the asshatery that plagues us. P.S. You KNOW that the twits that are shooting black men are the same sort of men who are dismissing the value of women. It’s a classic case of if you are not a white man, you really aren’t human in their eyes.

I still haven’t figured out the hierarchy though. Are black men higher up the rung or lower than women? I guess I’ll never know, being a minority woman. I’ll always be on the bottom. Lucky for you, I have a big mouth, so you’ll never forget I’m down there and you’ll always hear me. Squeaky wheel, party of all women and minorities please.

Anyways, so there have been misogynistic attacks on Hillary Clinton and Melania Trump because apparently being a woman is a liability. Having a vagina in the world puts a target on your back and it becomes a free fall for men to exploit any semblance of femininity you have as an inherent characteristic flaw.

What Melania being naked has to do with the kind of president Donald Trump would be makes no sense at all. I think he leaked it to let her take the fall for his obvious shortcomings. You know, if you’re certain that you’re going to lose an election why not blame the wife? And there have been so many crazy things said about Hillary that I can’t even list them. One of the worst, being the first woman to ever be elected as a presidential nominee and having the cover story photo be of a man. What the f*ck?

But then there are the Olympics, one amazing female athlete after another crushing it but do we give them credit? Nope, we reduce them to feminine stereotypes or attribute their success to their husbands. Firstly, gold medal gymnasts are highly evolved athletes not bubble gum smacking teeny boppers at the mall. These young ladies have poured hours of their lives, their very childhood, into becoming super athletes don’t trivialize their achievements or their sacrifices.

Also, when a woman wins a medal, don’t attribute the medal to the man she is married to. She’s the one who did the work. She’s the one who earned her spot. She’s the one who trained and made the sacrifices. Give her the glory. I don’t give a fuck what football team her husband plays for or if he helped train her. Do we give credit to Michael Phelps fiancé and coach every time he medals? Why do we have to undermine these women’s achievements? Does it make men feel better that they can take credit for our successes?

What’s next, commentary on fashion and how the female athlete’s bodies look in their outfits? Oh wait, I’ve already seen a thousand dirty comments about wanking to the women’s volleyball team. Have some respect people. Women are people too! A gold medalist is a gold medalist is a bad ass and her accomplishments should not be reduced to another pat on the back for the man in her life.

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Emily Doe, victim statement, Brock Turner, Stanford, swimmer, rape, rapist, kid, roared, roar, tantrums, mommy moment, bad parenting

On January 17, 2015, former Stanford University student, Brock Turner, raped an inebriated 22-year-old woman, Emily Doe, behind a garbage dumpster after a frat party. There was no remorse on the part of Mr. Turner for raping someone, only the remorse of being caught. We are all Emily Doe. This could have happened to any of us. It has happened to many of us (to one degree or another) and it will happen to many more of us, if we don’t fight to change it. In fact, it will happen to your daughter, and your granddaughters and all those daughters that come after that.

The attack was only stopped when two Swedish PhD students, Carl Fredrik-Arndt and Peter Jonsson, were cycling past on their way to a party. When the two heroes saw that Turner was on top of an unconscious woman, they stopped, tackled Turner and pinned him down until police could arrive and arrest him. They didn’t have to stop, in fact, most people wouldn’t have stopped they would have gone on about their business.

Because let’s be honest, most people don’t want to be bothered by the inconvenience. It’s so much easier not to get involved. So people pretend they don’t see it happening; the frightened woman on the subway with the stranger’s hand on her ass, the drunk girl at the party being carried off to another room by a group of guys or even the businesswoman walking down the street being harassed by catcalls by men so far beneath her station that the closest thing they’ll ever get to talking to her is yelling sexually lewd epithets at her.

This March, Turner was found guilty of three counts of sexual assault and last Thursday Turner faced a maximum of 14 years in state prison but instead was only sentenced to six months in a county jail and probation. He must also complete a sex offender management program and register as a convicted sex offender for the rest of his life.   This is a slap on the wrist and an insult to his victim. Apparently, membership in the club of white penis has its privileges. I’ve seen worse punishments bestowed on POC simply for being of color.

I’ve been avoiding the news the last few days because I wanted to enjoy my time with my family. After last week’s fiasco, I know to truly enjoy my life and time with my family I have to unplug. Then I stumbled across Facebook and I saw the photo of Brock Turner as the clean-cut good kid. Then I saw the actual mug shot and honestly, what does it matter what a rapist looks like? If you rape a woman you are a rapist. How well you dress or clean shaven you are, doesn’t make it okay or make you less of a rapist.

Brock Turner, Stanford University, rape culture, misogyny, campus rape

I’m sitting on vacation, reading the transcript of Emily Doe’s impact statement. As I listen to my little girl’s playing and giggling in the background, I am pushing down the lump in my throat and it is taking everything in my body not to start sobbing right here in the pool room at the Hyatt Regency. I didn’t realize that I’d be triggered but I was. Rape culture is alive and well and is not going anywhere soon. If anything, it’s growing momentum.

I want to cry for the victim; for what she has had to endure and her revictimization by a system that has failed her. I want to cry for my daughters who will one day soon be at college, alone without me to protect them from the evils of the world. I want to cry for every young woman who has ever gone doe-eyed and naively into the world and not expected to be victimized; myself included.

The judge was lenient on Brock Turner because he was an athlete, had a promising future and could possibly have even gone to the Olympics; made all of us Americans proud in the fucking 100-meter dash or some fucking shit like that. He got six months for ruining this woman’s life because in the world we live in, women’s lives don’t matter. We might have “equal rights” but really we will never be considered as valuable as men. He could have been an Olympian, what is she? Just another drunk girl at a party; or so Brock Turner, his father and the judge would have you believe. Just a poor dumb girl, who drank too much and had some drinker’s remorse the next day.

I used to be that girl. No, actually I was what Brock Turner and his attorneys would have you believe his victim was so I was actually much worse. I used to drink a lot in college. I would black out on occasion. I went to frat parties and I loved to flirt. I was the touchy-feely girl who loved attention and liked to have fun but I was a virgin until I was in college. Sure, I had boyfriends and there was dry humping, marathon make-out sessions and all that other shit you do when you just haven’t done the deed yet but I never consented to more. I wouldn’t because I hadn’t and I didn’t want to yet.

But there were times when I was drinking and guys got a little too aggressive in their advances. I remember once I was visiting a friend and I’d met a guy who was visiting her boyfriend, after a night of drinking and hanging out, I woke up to feel him pressed up against me and kissing me. I pushed him off but by the time I had woken up, he’d already been touching my body. I don’t know for how long, I was passed out. But I didn’t do anything about it because I felt partially responsible. Even though there was no consent and no making out before I passed out, I felt responsible for letting myself get into this vulnerable position because that is how this society has conditioned women to believe. If we are assaulted, we must have done something to encourage it.

Then there was the time I was at a frat party and a group of brothers from another university came to the party. I was a little sister at the fraternity, so I was comfortable and even felt safe at the house. A cute walkout started talking to me and one thing led to another, the flirting was in high gear and then in the middle of a room full of people, he pushed my head into his lap. I was drinking but that sobered me up immediately. I felt vulnerable, threatened (in a room full of guys) and angry. Luckily, the president of the frat (a friend of mine) saw the whole thing happen and literally, kicked the guy out of the house. Of course, then he spent the night “comforting” me. I let him because I felt like I owed him. I didn’t want his advances but it felt safer than some stranger shoving my face in his crotch and becoming an unwilling participant in a gang rape.

Then there was the time I was at a college bar with my friends and the star basketball player came up behind me and started grinding on me. I gently moved away. He followed in pursuit. Then he came in front of me, grabbed me by my ass and lifted me up around his waist and started trying to kiss me. No one did anything. I was terrified. I didn’t want his advances. I did not invite him to do any of this. I was minding my own business. No one helped me. I wiggled myself out of his grip and ran out of the bar. When a friend found me outside, she did not care if I was alright or if I was shaken. Her question was, “Don’t you know who that was?”

Or the time I was working at a retail chain as a teenager and the security guys called me back into the security room. I thought they needed a female employee as a witness as they questioned a suspected female shoplifter because that was protocol. Instead, when I got back there at 9 at night, when we were working on a skeleton crew, the two grown men, locked the door and started making comments on how I looked in my uniform. They told me that they liked watching me on the cameras and told me to my face, as they laughed, “You know we could do anything we wanted to you in here and no one would even hear us.” I was trembling I was so terrified.

How about the time I was at a cop party with my friend and a married cop tried to make advances towards me and when I said no because he was married (plus I wasn’t interested) he told me that I should think twice before driving alone in his city ever again because he could pull me over late at night on a dark road and it wouldn’t matter if I was interested or not.

The thing is as I read the victim’s account of what had happened to her, I was saddened and more than anything I was fuming mad. I’m trying to use my words but the problem is that I’m angry and I’m sick of the world giving men a hall pass for rape and attempted rape and acting like it’s a victimless crime. I could go on for pages listing all the different times I’ve been accosted to one degree or another.

Sometimes were worse than others. Sometimes things went further than I wanted them to go but I never felt like I could do anything about it because the truth is that no matter how good, bad, drunk, sober, promiscuous or frigid you are, if you are a woman, you have been made to feel vulnerable and unsafe in your lifetime; it is the curse of being born with a vagina.

We don’t have to do anything to precipitate an attack, they just happen and we just have to learn to live with it, apparently even in 2016. But this is bullshit. I don’t want my girls to ever feel this kind of vulnerability or fear of living. Why do we have to be cautious and careful before doing everything? Even a girl in a beige cardigan who did nothing to encourage her attacker’s advances still got raped, left like garbage on the side of a dumpster and her attacker only received six months jail time.

Even a girl in a beige cardigan who did nothing to encourage her attacker’s advances still got raped, left like garbage on the side of a dumpster and her attacker only received six months jail time. Apparently, that is all a woman’s life is worth. Her life is ruined; she will never be the same but it doesn’t really matter because a penis holds more value in this world than a vagina ever could. After all, we only propagate the species. He could have been an Olympian; she was always just a woman.

Emily Doe, Victim statement, swimmer,Brock Turner, Stanford University, rape culture, misogyny, campus rape

The scary thing is Brock Turner is not an anomaly. And it doesn’t matter what we do, how we dress, how much we do or don’t drink, we can all be the victim and this is what scares me the most. When are we going to teach our sons that it’s not okay to put their hands, fingers, mouths and dicks on women’s bodies without permission? When will our girls ever be able to feel safe to walk alone at night or have a vagina?

In case you don’t think rape is a serious crime that warrants more than a six-month inconvenience for the attacker, read the statement below from Brock Turner’s victim.

Your Honor, if it is all right, for the majority of this statement I would like to address the defendant directly.

You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we’re here today.

On January 17th, 2015, it was a quiet Saturday night at home. My dad made some dinner and I sat at the table with my younger sister who was visiting for the weekend. I was working full time and it was approaching my bed time. I planned to stay at home by myself, watch some TV and read, while she went to a party with her friends. Then, I decided it was my only night with her, I had nothing better to do, so why not, there’s a dumb party ten minutes from my house, I would go, dance like a fool, and embarrass my younger sister. On the way there, I joked that undergrad guys would have braces. My sister teased me for wearing a beige cardigan to a frat party like a librarian. I called myself “big mama”, because I knew I’d be the oldest one there. I made silly faces, let my guard down, and drank liquor too fast not factoring in that my tolerance had significantly lowered since college.

The next thing I remember I was in a gurney in a hallway. I had dried blood and bandages on the backs of my hands and elbow. I thought maybe I had fallen and was in an admin office on campus. I was very calm and wondering where my sister was. A deputy explained I had been assaulted. I still remained calm, assured he was speaking to the wrong person. I knew no one at this party. When I was finally allowed to use the restroom, I pulled down the hospital pants they had given me, went to pull down my underwear, and felt nothing. I still remember the feeling of my hands touching my skin and grabbing nothing. I looked down and there was nothing. The thin piece of fabric, the only thing between my vagina and anything else, was missing and everything inside me was silenced. I still don’t have words for that feeling. In order to keep breathing, I thought maybe the policemen used scissors to cut them off for evidence.

“You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we’re here today.”

Then, I felt pine needles scratching the back of my neck and started pulling them out my hair. I thought maybe, the pine needles had fallen from a tree onto my head. My brain was talking my gut into not collapsing. Because my gut was saying, help me, help me.

I shuffled from room to room with a blanket wrapped around me, pine needles trailing behind me, I left a little pile in every room I sat in. I was asked to sign papers that said “Rape Victim” and I thought something has really happened. My clothes were confiscated and I stood naked while the nurses held a ruler to various abrasions on my body and photographed them. The three of us worked to comb the pine needles out of my hair, six hands to fill one paper bag. To calm me down, they said it’s just the flora and fauna, flora and fauna. I had multiple swabs inserted into my vagina and anus, needles for shots, pills, had a Nikon pointed right into my spread legs. I had long, pointed beaks inside me and had my vagina smeared with cold, blue paint to check for abrasions.

After a few hours of this, they let me shower. I stood there examining my body beneath the stream of water and decided, I don’t want my body anymore. I was terrified of it, I didn’t know what had been in it, if it had been contaminated, who had touched it. I wanted to take off my body like a jacket and leave it at the hospital with everything else.

On that morning, all that I was told was that I had been found behind a dumpster, potentially penetrated by a stranger, and that I should get retested for HIV because results don’t always show up immediately. But for now, I should go home and get back to my normal life. Imagine stepping back into the world with only that information. They gave me huge hugs and I walked out of the hospital into the parking lot wearing the new sweatshirt and sweatpants they provided me, as they had only allowed me to keep my necklace and shoes.

My sister picked me up, face wet from tears and contorted in anguish. Instinctively and immediately, I wanted to take away her pain. I smiled at her, I told her to look at me, I’m right here, I’m okay, everything’s okay, I’m right here. My hair is washed and clean, they gave me the strangest shampoo, calm down, and look at me. Look at these funny new sweatpants and sweatshirt, I look like a P.E. teacher, let’s go home, let’s eat something. She did not know that beneath my sweatsuit, I had scratches and bandages on my skin, my vagina was sore and had become a strange, dark color from all the prodding, my underwear was missing, and I felt too empty to continue to speak. That I was also afraid, that I was also devastated. That day we drove home and for hours in silence my younger sister held me.

My boyfriend did not know what happened, but called that day and said, “I was really worried about you last night, you scared me, did you make it home okay?” I was horrified. That’s when I learned I had called him that night in my blackout, left an incomprehensible voicemail, that we had also spoken on the phone, but I was slurring so heavily he was scared for me, that he repeatedly told me to go find [fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][my sister]. Again, he asked me, “What happened last night? Did you make it home okay?” I said yes, and hung up to cry.

I was not ready to tell my boyfriend or parents that actually, I may have been raped behind a dumpster, but I don’t know by who or when or how. If I told them, I would see the fear on their faces, and mine would multiply by tenfold, so instead I pretended the whole thing wasn’t real.

I tried to push it out of my mind, but it was so heavy I didn’t talk, I didn’t eat, I didn’t sleep, I didn’t interact with anyone. After work, I would drive to a secluded place to scream. I didn’t talk, I didn’t eat, I didn’t sleep, I didn’t interact with anyone, and I became isolated from the ones I loved most. For over a week after the incident, I didn’t get any calls or updates about that night or what happened to me. The only symbol that proved that it hadn’t just been a bad dream, was the sweatshirt from the hospital in my drawer.

One day, I was at work, scrolling through the news on my phone, and came across an article. In it, I read and learned for the first time about how I was found unconscious, with my hair disheveled, long necklace wrapped around my neck, bra pulled out of my dress, dress pulled off over my shoulders and pulled up above my waist, that I was butt naked all the way down to my boots, legs spread apart, and had been penetrated by a foreign object by someone I did not recognize. This was how I learned what happened to me, sitting at my desk reading the news at work. I learned what happened to me the same time everyone else in the world learned what happened to me. That’s when the pine needles in my hair made sense, they didn’t fall from a tree. He had taken off my underwear, his fingers had been inside of me. I don’t even know this person. I still don’t know this person. When I read about me like this, I said, this can’t be me, this can’t be me. I could not digest or accept any of this information. I could not imagine my family having to read about this online. I kept reading. In the next paragraph, I read something that I will never forgive; I read that according to him, I liked it. I liked it. Again, I do not have words for these feelings.

“And then, at the bottom of the article, after I learned about the graphic details of my own sexual assault, the article listed his swimming times.”

It’s like if you were to read an article where a car was hit, and found dented, in a ditch. But maybe the car enjoyed being hit. Maybe the other car didn’t mean to hit it, just bump it up a little bit. Cars get in accidents all the time, people aren’t always paying attention, can we really say who’s at fault.

And then, at the bottom of the article, after I learned about the graphic details of my own sexual assault, the article listed his swimming times. She was found breathing, unresponsive with her underwear six inches away from her bare stomach curled in fetal position. By the way, he’s really good at swimming. Throw in my mile time if that’s what we’re doing. I’m good at cooking, put that in there, I think the end is where you list your extracurriculars to cancel out all the sickening things that’ve happened.

The night the news came out I sat my parents down and told them that I had been assaulted, to not look at the news because it’s upsetting, just know that I’m okay, I’m right here, and I’m okay. But halfway through telling them, my mom had to hold me because I could no longer stand up.

The night after it happened, he said he didn’t know my name, said he wouldn’t be able to identify my face in a lineup, didn’t mention any dialogue between us, no words, only dancing and kissing. Dancing is a cute term; was it snapping fingers and twirling dancing, or just bodies grinding up against each other in a crowded room? I wonder if kissing was just faces sloppily pressed up against each other? When the detective asked if he had planned on taking me back to his dorm, he said no. When the detective asked how we ended up behind the dumpster, he said he didn’t know. He admitted to kissing other girls at that party, one of whom was my own sister who pushed him away. He admitted to wanting to hook up with someone. I was the wounded antelope of the herd, completely alone and vulnerable, physically unable to fend for myself, and he chose me. Sometimes I think, if I hadn’t gone, then this never would’ve happened. But then I realized, it would have happened, just to somebody else. You were about to enter four years of access to drunk girls and parties, and if this is the foot you started off on, then it is right you did not continue. The night after it happened, he said he thought I liked it because I rubbed his back. A back rub.

Never mentioned me voicing consent, never mentioned us even speaking, a back rub. One more time, in public news, I learned that my ass and vagina were completely exposed outside, my breasts had been groped, fingers had been jabbed inside me along with pine needles and debris, my bare skin and head had been rubbing against the ground behind a dumpster, while an erect freshman was humping my half naked, unconscious body. But I don’t remember, so how do I prove I didn’t like it.

I thought there’s no way this is going to trial; there were witnesses, there was dirt in my body, he ran but was caught. He’s going to settle, formally apologize, and we will both move on. Instead, I was told he hired a powerful attorney, expert witnesses, private investigators who were going to try and find details about my personal life to use against me, find loopholes in my story to invalidate me and my sister, in order to show that this sexual assault was in fact a misunderstanding. That he was going to go to any length to convince the world he had simply been confused.

I was not only told that I was assaulted, I was told that because I couldn’t remember, I technically could not prove it was unwanted. And that distorted me, damaged me, almost broke me. It is the saddest type of confusion to be told I was assaulted and nearly raped, blatantly out in the open, but we don’t know if it counts as assault yet. I had to fight for an entire year to make it clear that there was something wrong with this situation.

“I was pummeled with narrowed, pointed questions that dissected my personal life, love life, past life, family life, inane questions, accumulating trivial details to try and find an excuse for this guy who had me half naked before even bothering to ask for my name. “

When I was told to be prepared in case we didn’t win, I said, I can’t prepare for that. He was guilty the minute I woke up. No one can talk me out of the hurt he caused me. Worst of all, I was warned, because he now knows you don’t remember, he is going to get to write the script. He can say whatever he wants and no one can contest it. I had no power, I had no voice, I was defenseless. My memory loss would be used against me. My testimony was weak, was incomplete, and I was made to believe that perhaps, I am not enough to win this. His attorney constantly reminded the jury, the only one we can believe is Brock, because she doesn’t remember. That helplessness was traumatizing.

Instead of taking time to heal, I was taking time to recall the night in excruciating detail, in order to prepare for the attorney’s questions that would be invasive, aggressive, and designed to steer me off course, to contradict myself, my sister, phrased in ways to manipulate my answers. Instead of his attorney saying, Did you notice any abrasions? He said, You didn’t notice any abrasions, right? This was a game of strategy, as if I could be tricked out of my own worth. The sexual assault had been so clear, but instead, here I was at the trial, answering questions like:

How old are you? How much do you weigh? What did you eat that day? Well what did you have for dinner? Who made dinner? Did you drink with dinner? No, not even water? When did you drink? How much did you drink? What container did you drink out of? Who gave you the drink? How much do you usually drink? Who dropped you off at this party? At what time? But where exactly? What were you wearing? Why were you going to this party? What’ d you do when you got there? Are you sure you did that? But what time did you do that? What does this text mean? Who were you texting? When did you urinate? Where did you urinate? With whom did you urinate outside? Was your phone on silent when your sister called? Do you remember silencing it? Really because on page 53 I’d like to point out that you said it was set to ring. Did you drink in college? You said you were a party animal? How many times did you black out? Did you party at frats? Are you serious with your boyfriend? Are you sexually active with him? When did you start dating? Would you ever cheat? Do you have a history of cheating? What do you mean when you said you wanted to reward him? Do you remember what time you woke up? Were you wearing your cardigan? What color was your cardigan? Do you remember any more from that night? No? Okay, well, we’ll let Brock fill it in.

I was pummeled with narrowed, pointed questions that dissected my personal life, love life, past life, family life, inane questions, accumulating trivial details to try and find an excuse for this guy who had me half naked before even bothering to ask for my name. After a physical assault, I was assaulted with questions designed to attack me, to say see, her facts don’t line up, she’s out of her mind, she’s practically an alcoholic, she probably wanted to hook up, he’s like an athlete right, they were both drunk, whatever, the hospital stuff she remembers is after the fact, why take it into account, Brock has a lot at stake so he’s having a really hard time right now.

And then it came time for him to testify and I learned what it meant to be revictimized. I want to remind you, the night after it happened he said he never planned to take me back to his dorm. He said he didn’t know why we were behind a dumpster. He got up to leave because he wasn’t feeling well when he was suddenly chased and attacked. Then he learned I could not remember.

So one year later, as predicted, a new dialogue emerged. Brock had a strange new story, almost sounded like a poorly written young adult novel with kissing and dancing and hand holding and lovingly tumbling onto the ground, and most importantly in this new story, there was suddenly consent. One year after the incident, he remembered, oh yeah, by the way she actually said yes, to everything, so.

He said he had asked if I wanted to dance. Apparently I said yes. He’d asked if I wanted to go to his dorm, I said yes. Then he asked if he could finger me and I said yes. Most guys don’t ask, can I finger you? Usually there’s a natural progression of things, unfolding consensually, not a Q and A. But apparently I granted full permission. He’s in the clear. Even in his story, I only said a total of three words, yes yes yes, before he had me half naked on the ground. Future reference, if you are confused about whether a girl can consent, see if she can speak an entire sentence. You couldn’t even do that. Just one coherent string of words. Where was the confusion? This is common sense, human decency.

According to him, the only reason we were on the ground was because I fell down. Note; if a girl falls down help her get back up. If she is too drunk to even walk and falls down, do not mount her, hump her, take off her underwear, and insert your hand inside her vagina. If a girl falls down help her up. If she is wearing a cardigan over her dress don’t take it off so that you can touch her breasts. Maybe she is cold, maybe that’s why she wore the cardigan.

Next in the story, two Swedes on bicycles approached you and you ran. When they tackled you why didn’t say, “Stop! Everything’s okay, go ask her, she’s right over there, she’ll tell you.” I mean you had just asked for my consent, right? I was awake, right? When the policeman arrived and interviewed the evil Swede who tackled you, he was crying so hard he couldn’t speak because of what he’d seen.

Your attorney has repeatedly pointed out, well we don’t know exactly when she became unconscious. And you’re right, maybe I was still fluttering my eyes and wasn’t completely limp yet. That was never the point. I was too drunk to speak English, too drunk to consent way before I was on the ground. I should have never been touched in the first place. Brock stated, “At no time did I see that she was not responding. If at any time I thought she was not responding, I would have stopped immediately.” Here’s the thing; if your plan was to stop only when I became unresponsive, then you still do not understand. You didn’t even stop when I was unconscious anyway! Someone else stopped you. Two guys on bikes noticed I wasn’t moving in the dark and had to tackle you. How did you not notice while on top of me?

You said, you would have stopped and gotten help. You say that, but I want you to explain how you would’ve helped me, step by step, walk me through this. I want to know, if those evil Swedes had not found me, how the night would have played out. I am asking you; Would you have pulled my underwear back on over my boots? Untangled the necklace wrapped around my neck? Closed my legs, covered me? Pick the pine needles from my hair? Asked if the abrasions on my neck and bottom hurt? Would you then go find a friend and say, Will you help me get her somewhere warm and soft? I don’t sleep when I think about the way it could have gone if the two guys had never come. What would have happened to me? That’s what you’ll never have a good answer for, that’s what you can’t explain even after a year.

On top of all this, he claimed that I orgasmed after one minute of digital penetration. The nurse said there had been abrasions, lacerations, and dirt in my genitalia. Was that before or after I came?

To sit under oath and inform all of us, that yes I wanted it, yes I permitted it, and that you are the true victim attacked by Swedes for reasons unknown to you is appalling, is demented, is selfish, is damaging. It is enough to be suffering. It is another thing to have someone ruthlessly working to diminish the gravity of validity of this suffering.

My family had to see pictures of my head strapped to a gurney full of pine needles, of my body in the dirt with my eyes closed, hair messed up, limbs bent, and dress hiked up. And even after that, my family had to listen to your attorney say the pictures were after the fact, we can dismiss them. To say, yes her nurse confirmed there was redness and abrasions inside her, significant trauma to her genitalia, but that’s what happens when you finger someone, and he’s already admitted to that. To listen to your attorney attempt to paint a picture of me, the face of girls gone wild, as if somehow that would make it so that I had this coming for me. To listen to him say I sounded drunk on the phone because I’m silly and that’s my goofy way of speaking. To point out that in the voicemail, I said I would reward my boyfriend and we all know what I was thinking. I assure you my rewards program is non transferable, especially to any nameless man that approaches me.

“This is not a story of another drunk college hook­up with poor decision making. Assault is not an accident.”

He has done irreversible damage to me and my family during the trial and we have sat silently, listening to him shape the evening. But in the end, his unsupported statements and his attorney’s twisted logic fooled no one. The truth won, the truth spoke for itself.

You are guilty. Twelve jurors convicted you guilty of three felony counts beyond reasonable doubt, that’s twelve votes per count, thirty ­six yeses confirming guilt, that’s one hundred percent, unanimous guilt. And I thought finally it is over, finally he will own up to what he did, truly apologize, we will both move on and get better. ​Then I read your statement.

If you are hoping that one of my organs will implode from anger and I will die, I’m almost there. You are very close. This is not a story of another drunk college hook­up with poor decision making. Assault is not an accident. Somehow, you still don’t get it. Somehow, you still sound confused. I will now read portions of the defendant’s statement and respond to them.

You said, Being drunk I just couldn’t make the best decisions and neither could she.

Alcohol is not an excuse. Is it a factor? Yes. But alcohol was not the one who stripped me, fingered me, had my head dragging against the ground, with me almost fully naked. Having too much to drink was an amateur mistake that I admit to, but it is not criminal. Everyone in this room has had a night where they have regretted drinking too much, or knows someone close to them who has had a night where they have regretted drinking too much. Regretting drinking is not the same as regretting sexual assault. We were both drunk, the difference is I did not take off your pants and underwear, touch you inappropriately, and run away. That’s the difference.

You said, If I wanted to get to know her, I should have asked for her number, rather than asking her to go back to my room.

I’m not mad because you didn’t ask for my number. Even if you did know me, I would not want to be in this situation. My own boyfriend knows me, but if he asked to finger me behind a dumpster, I would slap him. No girl wants to be in this situation. Nobody. I don’t care if you know their phone number or not.

You said, I stupidly thought it was okay for me to do what everyone around me was doing, which was drinking. I was wrong.

Again, you were not wrong for drinking. Everyone around you was not sexually assaulting me. You were wrong for doing what nobody else was doing, which was pushing your erect dick in your pants against my naked, defenseless body concealed in a dark area, where partygoers could no longer see or protect me, and my own sister could not find me. Sipping fireball is not your crime. Peeling off and discarding my underwear like a candy wrapper to insert your finger into my body, is where you went wrong. Why am I still explaining this.

You said, During the trial I didn’t want to victimize her at all. That was just my attorney and his way of approaching the case.

Your attorney is not your scapegoat, he represents you. Did your attorney say some incredulously infuriating, degrading things? Absolutely. He said you had an erection, because it was cold.

You said, you are in the process of establishing a program for high school and college students in which you speak about your experience to “speak out against the college campus drinking culture and the sexual promiscuity that goes along with that.”

Campus drinking culture. That’s what we’re speaking out against? You think that’s what I’ve spent the past year fighting for? Not awareness about campus sexual assault, or rape, or learning to recognize consent. Campus drinking culture. Down with Jack Daniels. Down with Skyy Vodka. If you want talk to people about drinking go to an AA meeting. You realize, having a drinking problem is different than drinking and then forcefully trying to have sex with someone? Show men how to respect women, not how to drink less.

Drinking culture and the sexual promiscuity that goes along with that. Goes along with that, like a side effect, like fries on the side of your order. Where does promiscuity even come into play? I don’t see headlines that read, Brock Turner, Guilty of drinking too much and the sexual promiscuity that goes along with that. Campus Sexual Assault. There’s your first powerpoint slide. Rest assured, if you fail to fix the topic of your talk, I will follow you to every school you go to and give a follow up presentation.

Lastly you said, I want to show people that one night of drinking can ruin a life.

A life, one life, yours, you forgot about mine. Let me rephrase for you, I want to show people that one night of drinking can ruin two lives. You and me. You are the cause, I am the effect. You have dragged me through this hell with you, dipped me back into that night again and again. You knocked down both our towers, I collapsed at the same time you did. If you think I was spared, came out unscathed, that today I ride off into sunset, while you suffer the greatest blow, you are mistaken. Nobody wins. We have all been devastated, we have all been trying to find some meaning in all of this suffering. Your damage was concrete; stripped of titles, degrees, enrollment. My damage was internal, unseen, I carry it with me. You took away my worth, my privacy, my energy, my time, my safety, my intimacy, my confidence, my own voice, until today.

See one thing we have in common is that we were both unable to get up in the morning. I am no stranger to suffering. You made me a victim. In newspapers my name was “unconscious intoxicated woman”, ten syllables, and nothing more than that. For a while, I believed that that was all I was. I had to force myself to relearn my real name, my identity. To relearn that this is not all that I am. That I am not just a drunk victim at a frat party found behind a dumpster, while you are the All­ American swimmer at a top university, innocent until proven guilty, with so much at stake. I am a human being who has been irreversibly hurt, my life was put on hold for over a year, waiting to figure out if I was worth something.

My independence, natural joy, gentleness, and steady lifestyle I had been enjoying became distorted beyond recognition. I became closed off, angry, self deprecating, tired, irritable, empty. The isolation at times was unbearable. You cannot give me back the life I had before that night either. While you worry about your shattered reputation, I refrigerated spoons every night so when I woke up, and my eyes were puffy from crying, I would hold the spoons to my eyes to lessen the swelling so that I could see. I showed up an hour late to work every morning, excused myself to cry in the stairwells, I can tell you all the best places in that building to cry where no one can hear you. The pain became so bad that I had to explain the private details to my boss to let her know why I was leaving. I needed time because continuing day to day was not possible. I used my savings to go as far away as I could possibly be. I did not return to work full time as I knew I’d have to take weeks off in the future for the hearing and trial, that were constantly being rescheduled. My life was put on hold for over a year, my structure had collapsed.

I can’t sleep alone at night without having a light on, like a five year old, because I have nightmares of being touched where I cannot wake up, I did this thing where I waited until the sun came up and I felt safe enough to sleep. For three months, I went to bed at six o’clock in the morning.

I used to pride myself on my independence, now I am afraid to go on walks in the evening, to attend social events with drinking among friends where I should be comfortable being. I have become a little barnacle always needing to be at someone’s side, to have my boyfriend standing next to me, sleeping beside me, protecting me. It is embarrassing how feeble I feel, how timidly I move through life, always guarded, ready to defend myself, ready to be angry.

You have no idea how hard I have worked to rebuild parts of me that are still weak. It took me eight months to even talk about what happened. I could no longer connect with friends, with everyone around me. I would scream at my boyfriend, my own family whenever they brought this up. You never let me forget what happened to me. At the of end of the hearing, the trial, I was too tired to speak. I would leave drained, silent. I would go home turn off my phone and for days I would not speak. You bought me a ticket to a planet where I lived by myself. Every time a new article come out, I lived with the paranoia that my entire hometown would find out and know me as the girl who got assaulted. I didn’t want anyone’s pity and am still learning to accept victim as part of my identity. You made my own hometown an uncomfortable place to be.

You cannot give me back my sleepless nights. The way I have broken down sobbing uncontrollably if I’m watching a movie and a woman is harmed, to say it lightly, this experience has expanded my empathy for other victims. I have lost weight from stress, when people would comment I told them I’ve been running a lot lately. There are times I did not want to be touched. I have to relearn that I am not fragile, I am capable, I am wholesome, not just livid and weak.

When I see my younger sister hurting, when she is unable to keep up in school, when she is deprived of joy, when she is not sleeping, when she is crying so hard on the phone she is barely breathing, telling me over and over again she is sorry for leaving me alone that night, sorry sorry sorry, when she feels more guilt than you, then I do not forgive you. That night I had called her to try and find her, but you found me first. Your attorney’s closing statement began, “[Her sister] said she was fine and who knows her better than her sister.” You tried to use my own sister against me? Your points of attack were so weak, so low, it was almost embarrassing. You do not touch her.

You should have never done this to me. Secondly, you should have never made me fight so long to tell you, you should have never done this to me. But here we are. The damage is done, no one can undo it. And now we both have a choice. We can let this destroy us, I can remain angry and hurt and you can be in denial, or we can face it head on, I accept the pain, you accept the punishment, and we move on.

Your life is not over, you have decades of years ahead to rewrite your story. The world is huge, it is so much bigger than Palo Alto and Stanford, and you will make a space for yourself in it where you can be useful and happy. But right now, you do not get to shrug your shoulders and be confused anymore. You do not get to pretend that there were no red flags. You have been convicted of violating me, intentionally, forcibly, sexually, with malicious intent, and all you can admit to is consuming alcohol. Do not talk about the sad way your life was upturned because alcohol made you do bad things. Figure out how to take responsibility for your own conduct.

Now to address the sentencing. When I read the probation officer’s report, I was in disbelief, consumed by anger which eventually quieted down to profound sadness. My statements have been slimmed down to distortion and taken out of context. I fought hard during this trial and will not have the outcome minimized by a probation officer who attempted to evaluate my current state and my wishes in a fifteen minute conversation, the majority of which was spent answering questions I had about the legal system. The context is also important. Brock had yet to issue a statement, and I had not read his remarks.

My life has been on hold for over a year, a year of anger, anguish and uncertainty, until a jury of my peers rendered a judgment that validated the injustices I had endured. Had Brock admitted guilt and remorse and offered to settle early on, I would have considered a lighter sentence, respecting his honesty, grateful to be able to move our lives forward. Instead he took the risk of going to trial, added insult to injury and forced me to relive the hurt as details about my personal life and sexual assault were brutally dissected before the public. He pushed me and my family through a year of inexplicable, unnecessary suffering, and should face the consequences of challenging his crime, of putting my pain into question, of making us wait so long for justice.

I told the probation officer I do not want Brock to rot away in prison. I did not say he does not deserve to be behind bars. The probation officer’s recommendation of a year or less in county jail is a soft time­out, a mockery of the seriousness of his assaults, an insult to me and all women. It gives the message that a stranger can be inside you without proper consent and he will receive less than what has been defined as the minimum sentence. Probation should be denied. I also told the probation officer that what I truly wanted was for Brock to get it, to understand and admit to his wrongdoing.

Unfortunately, after reading the defendant’s report, I am severely disappointed and feel that he has failed to exhibit sincere remorse or responsibility for his conduct. I fully respected his right to a trial, but even after twelve jurors unanimously convicted him guilty of three felonies, all he has admitted to doing is ingesting alcohol. Someone who cannot take full accountability for his actions does not deserve a mitigating sentence. It is deeply offensive that he would try and dilute rape with a suggestion of “promiscuity”. By definition rape is not the absence of promiscuity, rape is the absence of consent, and it perturbs me deeply that he can’t even see that distinction.

The probation officer factored in that the defendant is youthful and has no prior convictions. In my opinion, he is old enough to know what he did was wrong. When you are eighteen in this country you can go to war. When you are nineteen, you are old enough to pay the consequences for attempting to rape someone. He is young, but he is old enough to know better.

As this is a first offence I can see where leniency would beckon. On the other hand, as a society, we cannot forgive everyone’s first sexual assault or digital rape. It doesn’t make sense. The seriousness of rape has to be communicated clearly, we should not create a culture that suggests we learn that rape is wrong through trial and error. The consequences of sexual assault needs to be severe enough that people feel enough fear to exercise good judgment even if they are drunk, severe enough to be preventative.

The probation officer weighed the fact that he has surrendered a hard earned swimming scholarship. How fast Brock swims does not lessen the severity of what happened to me, and should not lessen the severity of his punishment. If a first time offender from an underprivileged background was accused of three felonies and displayed no accountability for his actions other than drinking, what would his sentence be? The fact that Brock was an athlete at a private university should not be seen as an entitlement to leniency, but as an opportunity to send a message that sexual assault is against the law regardless of social class.

The Probation Officer has stated that this case, when compared to other crimes of similar nature, may be considered less serious due to the defendant’s level of intoxication. It felt serious. That’s all I’m going to say.

What has he done to demonstrate that he deserves a break? He has only apologized for drinking and has yet to define what he did to me as sexual assault, he has revictimized me continually, relentlessly. He has been found guilty of three serious felonies and it is time for him to accept the consequences of his actions. He will not be quietly excused.

He is a lifetime sex registrant. That doesn’t expire. Just like what he did to me doesn’t expire, doesn’t just go away after a set number of years. It stays with me, it’s part of my identity, it has forever changed the way I carry myself, the way I live the rest of my life.

To conclude, I want to say thank you. To everyone from the intern who made me oatmeal when I woke up at the hospital that morning, to the deputy who waited beside me, to the nurses who calmed me, to the detective who listened to me and never judged me, to my advocates who stood unwaveringly beside me, to my therapist who taught me to find courage in vulnerability, to my boss for being kind and understanding, to my incredible parents who teach me how to turn pain into strength, to my grandma who snuck chocolate into the courtroom throughout this to give to me, my friends who remind me how to be happy, to my boyfriend who is patient and loving, to my unconquerable sister who is the other half of my heart, to Alaleh, my idol, who fought tirelessly and never doubted me. Thank you to everyone involved in the trial for their time and attention. Thank you to girls across the nation that wrote cards to my DA to give to me, so many strangers who cared for me.

Most importantly, thank you to the two men who saved me, who I have yet to meet. I sleep with two bicycles that I drew taped above my bed to remind myself there are heroes in this story. That we are looking out for one another. To have known all of these people, to have felt their protection and love, is something I will never forget.

And finally, to girls everywhere, I am with you. On nights when you feel alone, I am with you. When people doubt you or dismiss you, I am with you. I fought everyday for you. So never stop fighting, I believe you. As the author Anne Lamott once wrote, “Lighthouses don’t go running all over an island looking for boats to save; they just stand there shining.” Although I can’t save every boat, I hope that by speaking today, you absorbed a small amount of light, a small knowing that you can’t be silenced, a small satisfaction that justice was served, a small assurance that we are getting somewhere, and a big, big knowing that you are important, unquestionably, you are untouchable, you are beautiful, you are to be valued, respected, undeniably, every minute of every day, you are powerful and nobody can take that away from you. To girls everywhere, I am with you. Thank you.

After the victim’s statement went viral, Turner’s dad, Dan Turner, issued a statement defending his son, arguing his life will be “deeply altered” by the court’s verdict. I know this man is speaking out as a father but really, the callousness with which he disregards the consequences his son’s actions have had on his victim sickens me. He pretends that his son has done nothing wrong worth jail time and has no regard whatsoever for how his child has ruined this woman’s life.

“He will never be his happy go lucky self with that easy going personality and welcoming smile,” he wrote.

“His every waking minute is consumed with worry, anxiety, fear and depression. Now he barely consumes any food and eats only to exist. These verdicts have broken and shattered him and our family in so many ways. His life will never be the one that he dreamt about and worked so hard to achieve. That is a steep price to pay for 20 minutes of action out of his 20 plus years of life.”

Mr. Turner says his son, Brock Turner, should not be sent to jail.

“The fact that he now has to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life forever alters where he can live, visit, work, and how he will be able to interact people and organizations,” he wrote.

“What I know as his father is that incarceration is not the appropriate punishment for Brock. He has no prior criminal history and has never been violence to anyone, including his actions on the night of January 17, 2015.”

Mr. Turner then suggested his son could become a role model for young people. I get that he is the kid’s dad but there comes a time when you need to support your child by loving them while at the same time making them understand that there are consequences to bad behavior and raping a woman is bad behavior. It is unforgivable behavior.

“Brock can do so many positive things as a contributor to society and is totally committed to educating other college age students about the dangers of alcohol consumption and sexual promiscuity.”

“By having people like Brock educate others on college campuses is how society can begin to break the cycle of binge drinking and its unfortunate results. Probation is the best answer for Brock in this situation and allows him to give back to society in a net positive way.”

It’s like this man doesn’t think his son has done anything really wrong. I know he’s a father who loves his son and love is blind, especially where our children are concerned but this man is in absolute denial.

What do you think is a fitting punishment for Brock Turner’s choice to rape a woman?

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#YesAllWomen, marriage, misogyny, abuse, The Washington Post, women's issues

Oh look, the Washington Post thinks that for women to protect themselves from being victims of violence and rape we should all get married or live with our biological fathers because hey, if we’d all just stop being such cock-teasing whores for one minute and stopped taking lovers and made honest women of ourselves, we’d never have to worry about feeling threatened and “uncomfortable” and all of this #YesAllWomen business could just go away. Coincidentally, once again placing blame on the women for being abused. I mean come on, if the b*tch wasn’t drunk and half-naked, the least she could have done was gotten married and stopped trying to be such an independent woman. That’s how she got herself abused and if she hasn’t gotten herself abused, the dumb broad probably got her kids abused because she decided to date again after leaving the crack-headed, wife beating, meth head she was married to.

It was written by two academics by the names of W. Bradford Wilcox and Robin Fretwell Wilson, whose names aren’t the only thing out of the 19th century: the article looks at a bunch of statistics in regard to violence against women and children, and concludes that “the data show that #yesallwomen would be safer hitched to their baby daddies.” 

Basically, once again, the world (more precisely the Washington Post) has lumped us all into 2 categories; whores and virgins and there is no room for gray, only black and white. The bottom line is that the Washington Post has at least two misogynistic writers who blame all women for being treated like second class citizens. Hell, maybe there’s even a secret woman haters club at the Washington Post that meets once a week and is lobbying for the acceptance of drowning baby girls because really, what the hell’s the point? Because apparently, some people think that men can procreate without women and our pesky uteri. Apart from cooking and cleaning in all of our bare footed glory, women serve no real purpose in the world other than to look pretty and be quiet, right? News flash, women are people too.

Yes, misogyny is alive and well at the Washington Post.

Men are allowed to do as they will and women are supposed to suck it up and just accept their fate. I mean WHY would any woman think that she has the right to happiness after divorce or at all, for that matter? It doesn’t matter whether the man was an abusive jerk who beat her on the regular and had started molesting their children, she is his property and she needs to just accept that and be alone and in fear for the rest of her life. If not, it’s going to be her fault when something bad happens and it will because women are like magnets for bad shit to happen so prepare your daughters.

#YesAllWomen, marriage, misogyny, abuse, The Washington Post, women's issues

Eff it, happiness is overrated anyways plus I hear only men can truly experience happiness, it has something to do with the happiness receptors being located right under the tip of their penis or wait, maybe it has something to do with being an asshole. I can’t remember. What do you expect, I was just some kid whose mother stayed with her husband and I was raised by my biological father but we all still got to experience our fair share of abuse. I guess we were just lucky.

When I was about 8, I begged my mom to leave because even at that young age, I knew that it was wrong. I knew that there had to be something more out there than just accepting your situation. I KNEW that she deserved better. That we all deserved better. But none of us got it. We all got to suffer in silence. Do I think that my life is better because of her sacrifice? NO! Do I think she is happier because of her sacrifice? NO! Did it save her from abuse, pain and humiliation? NO! This is the oldest story in the book. This is fear-mongering and it is about time we stop letting fear keep us quiet. It’s time to get mad; downright pissed off and to stand up against the misogynistic world we live in It all starts with one person willing to say no; to be the change. I’m saying no for all the women who couldn’t or haven’t. NO!

#YesAllWomen, marriage, misogyny, abuse, The Washington Post, women's issues, child abuse

Maybe life would have been better had my mom not been brainwashed into staying in her abusive marriage by a society that taught her that it was better to be miserable and have a husband, better to be abused and let your children get abused than to be alone. Thank God for a society who looks out so deeply for its women folk. No thanks, I’ll take my chances and try to decide for myself what’s best for me and my children. Unless you are living in the same dire situation that some women face every day by being abused and raped by their partners, you have no right to insist that she take it on the chin and just accept it.

Hey Washington Post until you’ve lived in the world with a vagina, why not stop skewing statistics to fit your agenda?

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#yesAllWomen, Elliot Rodger, women's issues, misogyny, sexism, rape, shooting spree

I had no idea that #YesAllWomen movement began this weekend. I spent the weekend with my family, celebrating my daughter’s 7th birthday. Her birthday was Wednesday and we were busy every single day until her birthday party held on Saturday. 15 tiny, beautiful little girls surrounded me; little girls who still think they can do and be anything. They giggled and laughed and we played and had cake and I had no idea about what had just happened with Elliot Rodger, the 22-year-old student at the University of California Santa Barbara.He went on a shooting spree and killed 6 people before killing himself.

In the weeks leading up to the killings, Rodger posted a series of angry, bathetic YouTube videos and a hundred-and-thirty-seven-page autobiographical “manifesto,” declaring his hatred of all women for the rejection and disdain he claims they dealt him throughout his life.

I had no idea that there were other mothers who were mourning the loss of their daughters for no other reason than a mad man who felt that women deserved to die because they had rejected him. Misogyny is running rampant and no one is stopping it. Not anyone in specific, just all women in general and even men just for having sex when he was having none. This was avoidable, had anyone cared to listen. If anyone ever cared enough to listen when people ask for help.

Director Peter Rodger and his wife Moroccan-born French actress Soumaya Akaaboune said through their lawyer that they contacted police several weeks ago after seeing a series of YouTube videos their son posted which made references to suicide and murder.

I blissfully unaware soaked in every moment of my time with those girls on that beautiful Saturday in May. Not until tonight, when the girls have all gone home and my littlest girl is snuggled in bed tight next to me did I see the story and watch the video and here I sit ugly crying. Not because I am scared for my girls, for all girls, but because I am mad. I am fucking pissed off. What gave him the right? Who’s protecting our daughters?

 

What a spoiled, disgusting animal Elliot Rodger was. He thought like so many other men that women are here solely for his pleasure and when they did not accommodate he decided that they must face a day of retribution and annihilation for no other sin than being born with a vagina. This spoiled child made himself, judge, jury and executioner.

The sad fact is that the world is full of men who feel indignantly wronged by women who dare refuse them. There are men that feel that women owe them everything from their time, to their love to their very life. There are men who feel like we owe them our hearts, our bodies and our respect but they don’t feel that they need to give those things in return. In some men’s eyes, women are no better than property; a piece of furniture, a toy or an old sock. We belong to them. We belong to the world that doesn’t respect us, value us or love us enough to fight for us and they have beaten us down for so long that we let them without so much as batting an eye.

We do not buck and strain and resist, we passively walk with our heads down, quickly out of harms way for fear that what lies between our legs makes us a willing participant in the victimization of our own flesh. We can’t walk alone in the dark or leave a drink to pee. We can’t smile at a man without him taking it as consent to have his way with us. This is nothing new. Most men believe it; women accept it and it sucks for all of us.  I am a mother of daughters and I refuse to accept this fucked up status quo. This is my line in the sand. I say no more.

I do not want another little girl to go through life running from men for fear that they will be attacked. We cannot raise our girls to believe that what they wear or say or drink makes victimization their fault. We cannot accept fear as normal. We need to teach our girls to be strong; to fight back, to stand up and to value themselves for who they are, not what lies between their legs.

Sexism is nothing new; the ideas that perpetuate systematic marginalization, outright violence towards women, rape culture, and the demonization of women who dare to stand up for themselves has been around since the beginning of time. A strong woman is a threat. A strong woman is too much trouble. Women are here to be seen and not heard, to service men in every way; this is what some believe. Not me. I am a fucking human being and I am sick of everybody from the UPS guy to the local preacher to the old man on the golf course and every single stinking asshole who ever pushed up on me in a bar in between who thinks they have the right to use women and abuse women because we are here for their disposal.

He wanted to abolish sex, thereby equalizing men and ridding society of women’s manipulative and bestial natures, and to lock women in concentration camps so they would die out. (“I would have an enormous tower built just for myself, where I can oversee the entire concentration camp and gleefully watch them all die,” he wrote. “If I can’t have them, no one will, I imagine thinking to myself as I oversee this. Women represent everything that is unfair in this world, and in order to make this world a fair place, women must be eradicated.”) His idea was to imprison a few select women in a lab, where they would be artificially inseminated to propagate the species.

We have all endured catcalls and men openly touching themselves in front of us while licking their lips like we were steak. I’ve personally had strange men expose themselves to me in broad daylight, men I dated force my hand and my head to places I didn’t want to go, had male employers corner me in small solitude rooms and make unwanted advances. I’ve had drunken frat boys try to force me out of my clothes, put their hands up my skirt and drunkenly dry hump me in plain sight. No one helped. I’ve dated men who kept pushing past where I felt comfortable and didn’t care that I said stop. It breaks off little pieces of your self-esteem, it chisels away at your sense of safety and soon you feel as worthless as they make you believe that you are. When I’ve spoken up for myself, I’ve been called a cunt, a bitch, a tease and a dike because if I didn’t submit to their will then obviously it was because something was wrong with me.

I have held my breath and my tongue more times than I can count and I can’t anymore. What Elliot Rodger did was shocking but not surprising. I watched his video and physically became ill at the callousness with which he spoke of massacring women because he felt rejected and alone. He had no care for their lives, it was completely narcissistic and outrageously removed from humanity. He equated women with animals to be slaughtered and why wouldn’t he? Our own government has done so on several occasions.

Look at us. See us! We are people. We are not property. We are not animals. We are not inanimate objects put on this earth solely to bend to the will of man. We are more than sperm receptacles and objects of desire. We have thoughts, dreams, goals, wants and needs. It frightens me that this man did this with no remorse, no second thoughts. It was like a spoiled child who wanted a piece of candy and had been denied and decided that the entire population needed to be eradicated because he was mildly inconvenienced. Worse still, he is not the first who has done this and he will not be the last. This makes me sadder than any words could ever convey.

When you lie awake and think about the horrors this man wanted to inflict on women, please remember that #YesAllWomen matter.

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misogyny, feminism, Robin Thicke, Kim Hall, Richard Thomas, Universtiy of Vermont, Cherice Morazlez,

It is once again Throat Punch Thursday and after the past two weeks, I feel like I might need to create a tab on my blog labeled misogyny gone wild. People, I don’t want to stay up here on this soap box defending women’s rights and equality but what is going on in the world? People have lost their damn minds and the world has declared rapid fire war on women. So today’s throat punch is plural. It’s ok though, last week I gave you sunsets in San Diego so I owed you one anyways.

Throat Punch Thursday,kim hall, richard thomas, university of vermont, cherice Moralez

First, there is Mrs.Hall, a mom of teen boys, who wrote a blog post titled, FYI ( if you’re a teenage girl) in which she blames all the braless teen girls on social media for her sons’ sexual urges. Look, I get it there are some women who are submissive and agreed to all that “obey” and “submit” shit in their wedding vows, who believe misogyny is a good thing. I am not one of those women. I know that good Christian parents want to raise good Christian children. I do. I get it. I sent my kids to Catholic school for just this reason. I want my girls to be raised with a good moral compass just as much as Mrs. Hall wants her boys to be raised with a “good moral compass.” That’s my job; to raise my girls to have self-respect and be strong, independent women who love their bodies and don’t need societal approval. I want to raise self-confident, intelligent and happy children. I want them to become women who know that at the end of the day, the only person they have to qualify their choices with is themselves and God. Not to me, not to some guy and certainly not to some guy’s overbearing, crazy mother.

It’s not my job to police all the teenage boys in the vicinity and shame them into staying away from my daughters. It is not my job to make my girls feel like they should be ashamed of their bodies and are less than a man. I refuse to teach my girls that men are  slaves to their penises so girls have to operate on the defensive, lest they be raped and it be their own fault. Because men succumbing to their sexual urges is natural but a woman doing the same is shameful and sinful and any woman who does so is not only in danger of going straight to hell but also in taking every penis within her reach with her. This is what Mrs. Hall fears most.

Kim Hall, Mrs.Hall, misogyny

Mrs. Hall you don’t think too much of your boys if you believe them to be so weak. I don’t understand how you can demean young girls for going braless in selfies when you, yourself, posted topless photos of your sons on the beach. Your misogyny and willingness to perpetuate double standards, sickens me. Why not just raise your boys to not look at braless selfies? Or can you not trust them to escape the hold of the braless teen breast?

Bottom line, Mrs. Hall’s post was condescending and seething in passive aggressiveness. Don’t tell me to control my girls. Don’t tell my girls to control themselves. Do your job and teach your boys to control their own sexual urges.Keep your threats of online exile and maybe consider parental controls, limiting social media for your boys or just plain taking it away. By the way, I think it’s pretty effing creepy that you sit around the table as a family and scroll through photos of teen girls looking for braless selfies so you can  pass judgement and dole out consequences. You get a throat punch, Mrs.Hall, for your very unbecoming behavior as a mother and a woman.

Second, a convicted rapist, Richard Thomas, collapsed after police told him he may have contracted HIV from the woman raped while she slept. Thomas “let himself into her home uninvited in the middle of the night and she awoke to find him raping her from behind. He’d been drinking heavily and taking ecstasy and claims to not recall any of it.

Thomas was sentenced to five years and four months after pleading guilty to raping a woman while she slept. He will find out from test results later this week whether he’s contracted the disease.

Okay, let me just say that I don’t give a rat’s ass if Thomas remembers doing it or not. He did it. Whether you remember it or not is inconsequential. He seems to have absolutely no remorse about what he has done, even though he has definitely ruined her life by taking away her sense of security and safety in her own home and violating her in such a vulnerable position, now, does he really expect people to feel sorry for him that he might have contracted HIV?

I don’t. In fact, if he has contracted HIV, he’s gotten what he deserves. He may be the first rapist in the history of the world who has. I wish he’d caught some sort of venereal disease that made he penis shrivel up and fall off because, for what he’s done, that is exactly what he deserves and owes his victim. I don’t feel sorry for you, Mr. Thomas, instead I bestow upon you a Throat Punch. Fuck you and your bullshit story about not remembering, may your HIV serve as a constant reminder that women are not here solely for your entertainment and use.

Third, the University of Vermont frat brothers who are looking via Craigs list for a MILF (a woman over 25. What?) to come clean and cook for them in exchange for free sex with the lot of them. Like a house mother but with, you know, “perks” because that is what every grown woman wants, right? The privilege of having sex with some fumbling, drunk college frat brother who doesn’t know his head from his asshole. EWWWW! Boys, that’s why women almost always date older men; sexual experience, mental maturity and stable finances. What grown woman wants  an inexperienced, selfish lover who smells of Axe body spray and skunked beer?

We are a house of 10 men who all are seniors at UVM and are looking for an attractive older woman to come and cook for us every few days. In exchange she gets her pick of the men of the house to have.

Requirements aren’t lengthy; be a woman older than 25 who can cook and would like to enjoy some hot sex with a number of fit 20 somethings. Hopefully you can come by every week for a meal and some play time. Obviously we can work to accommodate your schedule. 😉

We are located in Burlington, are a fun and clean group of guys, and are all 21+.

These boys clearly have no respect for women, mommy issues and a warped sense of humor. Well, at least I hope this was an attempt at humor, a Craig’s list ad written under the influence of a night of binge drinking. Because if not, the University of Vermont campus has bigger problems and might need to hire some extra escorts and pass out rape whistles to all the incoming freshman and female janitorial staff because these boys don’t discriminate. I wonder of any of them are recent graduates of Steubenville?

Fourth, Facebook and porn! Oh dear Lord Facebook, what the hell were you thinking? Yesterday afternoon, I jumped on FB to check my account and what to my shock did I sit down to see staring me back but a screen full of a close up shot of some woman’s vagina being manually manipulated by herself. At first, I was so stunned and a vagina on my FB tread was so out of context that it really took me a moment to figure out just WTF I was looking at. Seriously. Then, I immediately saw that it was an photo attachment to a comment left on Arianna Huffington’s status. In my shocked state, I was fumbling to unfollow and hide the photo before one of my kids walked into my office and saw it. I am not ready for the masturbation conversation yet. The really crazy thing is that FB will snatch down a photo of a mom breastfeeding her baby in a second and deem it as inappropriate but the up close beaver shot fell through the cracks. Is FB just more of a beaver man than a boob man? I don’t know but I prefer my Facebook without the side of pornography. Thank you. So FB, you too get a throat punch.

facebook, porn, mrs. hall, richard thomas

There were more like itsparenting.com swiping content from bloggers and claiming it as their own, even being so ridiculous that they featured a post about themselves being plagiarist. Huh? Or how about  Cherice Moralez, a victim of rape, being held responsible for provoking her rapist and in some way consenting when she was only 14 when it happened, the rapist was 49 and they both agreed it was not consensual. The judge ruled otherwise giving the rapist only 30 days in jail! Cherice Moralez committed suicide because we live in a misogynistic society who doesn’t protect it’s women from it’s men. This is a fact and a trend and I want better for my girls. I want them to be treated with the respect and reverence they deserve by men, by their government and most importantly by other women.

Who do you think deserves a throat punch this week?

Photo

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misogynist, misogyny, robin thicke, miley cyrus

misogyny, misogynist, robin thicke,miley cyrus
Last week, I wrote a post about Miley Cyrus and Robin Thicke that really seemed to piss people off. Worst of all, it pissed women off but not at Robin Thicke for being a misogynistic pig but at Miley Cyrus for being a whore who obviously violated Robin Thicke and anger towards me for having the gall to write a piece that not only insinuated that Thicke was partially to blame for the VMA performance but straight up called the guy out for being the smarmy pig he is.

Women all over the world came to his defense saying things like he is a good guy and whores like Miley and feminist bitches like myself are all up in arms because we hate men.(This was actually said to me). I assure you that I do not hate men. In fact, I have a sweet spot for them.My husband is one of my favorite people in the world. Anyways, I spoke the truth and anyone with eyes and common sense, knew I was right. Still, they argued. Obviously it was me, not Robin Thicke who had the problem. Even after I prominently featured his misogynistic video for Blurred Lines, they still defended him. I could not win.

Then, while I was traveling in San Diego for a press event, a reader sent me a post by a male blogger who wrote essentially the exact same perspective and opinion as I ,myself, had written on Monday and Tuesday only there was one main difference, he had a penis. Where I had been called a man hating feminist bitch, he was patted on the back by women for being such a wonderful man. Praised, patted on the back and swooned upon. In fact, I am sure team Robin Thicke has even jumped the shark and become team the Matt Walsh blog. I salute you Matt Walsh because you said everything I did and somehow managed to avoid any backlash. Damn, I had no idea the penis wielded such protection powers. Damn unsafe vagina.

Speaking of vaginas, can anyone explain to me where Robin Thicke has been this entire time? Why did he not speak out on Monday and let the world know that the crass behavior, twerking aside, on Miley’s part was directly from HIS video? Think about that, Robin Thicke fans.Where was your precious, chivalrous Mr.Thicke when a woman was getting the beat down of all backlash that he was responsible for?

Then another reader & friend sent me this, because y’all get me, you really, really do.

Robin Thicke, MIley Cyrus, Misogyny
And another reader sent me this and I know we are all not choking down the misogyny that is being spoon fed to us by media and society.

I’m not a “man hating feminist” nor do I have anything personal against Robin Thicke and I really don’t think that Miley Cyrus twerking and Robin Thicke dry humping her on stage is more important than people in Syria being gassed with Sarin BUT I do, with all that I am, believe that women have been treated like objects rather than people for far too long and to ignore it any longer would be detrimental to our society as a whole. We are mothers, sisters, daughters, grandmothers and wives. We are somebody’s everything and dismissing women as less than men, making us nothing more than what lies between our legs, is lessening all of us as the human race. You are squandering your most precious asset.

What are your thoughts on the treatment of women in the world? Will you stand by silently as this continues? I will not!

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Robin Thicke, Miley Cyrus., Blurred line, misogyny, slut shaming

 

Robin Thicke, Miley Cyrus, Blurred Lines, We Can't Stop

The Internet has blurred lines for Robin Thicke and deemed Miley Cyrus a whore. I am also sick to death of women protecting Robin Thicke for his part in the performance. Look, I am not saying that Miley Cyrus was some sort of unsuspecting innocent child and she got turnt out by big, nasty Robin Thicke. Nope, not saying that at all. In fact, what’s the big fucking deal? She is grown. He is grown and it was the VMAs for God’s sake not Saturday morning cartoons on Sprout. It wasn’t like the Wiggles pulled this shit. What did you expect?

Be naked; be dressed like Beetlejuice. Dry hump, twerk. Do whatever makes you happy. What’s got me all hot around the collar is that grown women, mothers even, are all over the Internet calling Miley Cyrus a giant slut while, in the same breath, saying they see nothing wrong with what Robin Thicke was doing. In fact, they lay sole culpability at the feet of Miley Cyrus.What?

Miley Cyrus, RObin Thicke, VMAs, We Can't Stop, Blurred Lines

People, let’s clarify; This.Performance.Was.Choreographed.and.Rehearsed. He was not surprised. She did not just make up a move on the fly. It was not a case of she is a home wrecking slut and he is just a good church going man. IT.TAKES.TWO.TO.GET.A.LAP.DANCE! Giver and receiver because if you are giving and no one agrees to receive then no harm is done. There she would have stood, like a fool, twerkin in the wind.

In case you still think that Robin Thicke was ruined by Miley Cyrus, here is proof that he was ruined long before then and he did it all on his own.

Do you still think that Robin Thicke had nothing to do with what happened on stage Sunday night? If so, explain to me why you find Robin Thicke’s actions less offensive than Miley Cyrus’?

If you can’t hear what I’m trying to say
If you can’t read from the same page
Maybe I’m going deaf
Maybe I’m going blind
Maybe I’m out of my mind

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][Bridge: Robin Thicke]
Ok, now he was close
Tried to domesticate you
But you’re an animal
Baby, it’s in your nature
Just let me liberate you
You don’t need no papers
That man is not your maker
And that’s why I’m gon’ take a

[Hook: Robin Thicke]
Good girl
I know you want it
I know you want it
I know you want it
You’re a good girl
Can’t let it get past me
You’re far from plastic
Talk about getting blasted
I hate these blurred lines
I know you want it
I know you want it
I know you want it
But you’re a good girl
The way you grab me
Must wanna get nasty
Go ahead, get at me

[Verse 2: Robin Thicke]
What do they make dreams for
When you got them jeans on
What do we need steam for
You the hottest bitch in this place
I feel so lucky, you wanna hug me
What rhymes with hug me
Hey!

I guess even misogyny and slut shaming are tolerable as long as you put them to a good beat. By the way, if you watch the Blurred Lines video you will see that most of the Blurred lines performance was dictated from Mr. Thicke’s video.

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