DUDES, MEN, MALES, FELLAS, GUYS: I can not say this enough, it is YOUR responsibility to educate yourself on rape. It is YOUR responsibility to educate your friends on rape. It is your responsibility, just for accessing your privilege, to use it the best way you can.
If you believe in women’s rights. If you believe in feminism. If you believe women and men should be equal. Then I dare you to doubt yourself, I dare you to strip yourself of all your safety, I dare you to wear clothes that society will scrutinize you for. Wear something that will get you attacked. THEN recognize that there is nothing a woman can wear that WON’T get her attacked.
This is a truly amazing speech, I only wish that I could have been there to hear it. Just reading it I had the urge to cry, as someone that lived both as a man and woman, it’s definitely stunning to realize everything he brought to light about rape. Embarrassingly enough other than Jenny’s suggestion to Mark in The L Word. I’ve never heard a anyone express just how a man should act to fully understand how women are mistreated in so many ways.
I’ve read some pieces pro-SlutWalk online and in several, I find I’m being erased. There is talk of sexual assault survivors and their families—“mothers, husbands, boyfriends, siblings”—but find that queer visibility is exactly none. You make it very clear to me when you use such words that your movement is really only for heterosexuals.
Additionally, the movement is catered to individuals who are considered “attractive” by society’s standards; for example, if a group of fat individuals were to march in a SlutWalk, more than likely, the response would be something like “but you can’t be sluts; no one wants to have sex with you.” Fitting into the narrative of what being a “slut” means is difficult for those who are not able-bodied, cisgender, and white. Specifically for certain non-white individuals, their bodies are automatically coded as “sexual” and sometimes, no matter what they wear makes them a “slut.” Reclaiming the word “slut” only works if you have had the term applied to you, if you’re considered attractive enough by society’s standards to sleep with, and can get lots of people to sleep with you. (And, really, let’s be honest—they’re not talking about people here. They’re talking about cisgender, heterosexual men.)
Others have spoken about how the word “slut” does not transcend cultural boundaries, but few have talked about the privilege that sometimes exists when a word is reclaimed.
I agree whole-heartedly with all the problems that this person brought up with SlutWalk and Take Back The Night. Honestly, some people cannot grasp the full ideas of rape culture. Unless they are spoon-fed why it’s wrong point by point. It’s not that a woman even has to dress sexual OR look sexually enticing. I have seen some horrific cases of men brutally raping disabled women, and elderly women.
And sometimes it’s not even a sexual thing for the rapist, it’s a power thing, they just want to be able to over-power the woman. And make her feel worthless and weak. I mean, I could in all honestly type up a huge piece on my opinions on the matter, but this person states a lot of my opinions very well.
Rape, female genital cutting, battering, and many more violent offenses are the reality for women everyday around the world. And it’s not going to get better unless we speak up. One billion women will be victims of violence in their lifetime.
Recognizing that violence is both a cause and effect of poverty, CARE works to prevent and reduce physical, sexual and psychological abuse against women and girls. Recently, CARE launched a new campaign, “Voices Against Violence,” to support the hundreds of thousands of women and girls silenced by abuse.
I just signed CARE’s petition to call for an end to violence against women. Please add your voice to the petition, too, and help CARE empower women and girls to break free from the vicious cycle of poverty and abuse. Click above link or here.
Together, we can help CARE empower women and girls to escape violence and unlock their vast potential to thrive and create a brighter future for themselves, their families and their communities.
We want to walk against unwanted attention and labeling based on our attire and others perceptions of us regardless of sex or gender. It doesn’t matter how short your skirt is, how low cut your top, how tight your pants or how lovely your lumps, nobody deserves sexual assault.