I completely understand the sentiment. It is infuriating to try to explain to the people closest to me how much the presence of misogyny and sexism in this culture has effected me. It is like trying to explain breathing to someone who needs proof that air exists because he can't see it. Though he benefits from its presence, he will require more than my say so to believe it is real.
But I do not believe that time is actually up. Not until I stop seeing articles written by incredibly intelligent people calling for anger. Calling for a lashing out. Not until I start seeing people who understand that if it is truly a cultural problem, then we must understand that the whole reason rape culture exists IS anger, IS people lashing out. It IS violence.
I have known many sexists, misogynists, racists, homophobes, and more. They all had one thing in common: Anger. Feeling like they were in fact, a victim. I know it sounds crazy, and as someone who has endured sexual abuse, it has always been hard for me to swallow, but this is the truth. These people, men and women alike, have been raised in a culture where this is not only allowed, but rewarded.
So what do you do to stop this? When anger is not a solution and punishment has never proven to be a deterrent or solution? You stop participating. This is the only way to shut it down. In order to end this, we must ALL OF US stop participating in it.
What does that look like? Well, in my life it looks like this: I quit jobs where the misogyny is so thick that it gets in the way of me doing my job. (To date, every one I have ever held.) I do not interract with people who behave in this manner. Men and women alike. When people I know do or say things that I believe adds to this violent culture, I point it out. When people point it out to me, I correct myself. If I have hurt someone, I apologize. I try to do better.
But regardless of the situation, I make sure that I am willing to give up what I am needing for the greater good. Yes, I need a job, but honestly, I need rape culture to go away more. Yes, I would like friends, but I would like rape culture to go away more. Yes, I want love, but not at the cost of losing my identity and not at the cost of healing the culture. Yes, I want a government, but not at the expense of so many Americans who deserve human rights.
All other violent behaviors will also be solved with this. Peaceful non-participation. Other people, great and small, have used it in the past to great success.
But please, stop asking for more violence. Stop asking for a reckoning. Because in this culture, we are all participants.
Until we are not.
I needed a break. Huge shifts in my consciousness and my emotional body required a shutdown. So, I have been gone for a while, crying a lot and figuring out what needed to change. I am back now, feeling better, having made some decisions about my new life. Decisions, which, as you might guess, have been a long time coming.
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