Beginner's Heart

Beginner's Heart


#yesallwomen

via Google

via Google

If you haven’t read the Twitter site #yesallwomen, eat breakfast first. I didn’t, and won’t be able to eat for a while.

Because it’s true, America: ALL women. N.B.: do men suffer violence? Of course. But today is not the time I’m going there. Today, let’s talk (again & again, until we GET IT) about rape culture. About a crime unlike any other, as one Twitter post noted: bc rape is the only crime where the victim has to prove it wasn’t their fault.

I woke up this morning in a fine mood — showered, made tea, watched the daddy downy woodpecker feed his baby. Watched the mother downy woodpecker help. And then I sat down to go through my email, as I do many mornings. An hour later? I’m shaking.

I do not know ONE woman who hasn’t been the victim of sexual harrassment, domestic violence, up to and including rape. Some have been the victims of multiple rapes. NONE of this was EVER the woman’s fault. But not one pressed charges. Why bother?

rage3

via Google

A niece was raped at a party. She DID press charges, a messy process that she eventually dropped. Why? Because the process, as the Twitter post notes, makes the victim the villain. Why bother?

I could re-post from the thousands of women have joined the outpouring of carefully tamped rage at their daily encounters with the rape culture of America. All of this a genuine visceral revolt at the UCSB shootings, by a man who was proud of his misogyny, his own visceral hatred of women. Hatred so virulent that he put his life where his manifesto was, murdering them. Who targeted men because they were ‘luckier’ than he was with women. But what I want to say instead (you can — and should — go to #yesallwomen and read the posts) is what happened to me as I read.

Rage. Stomach-roiling, head-shattering, white-hot rage.

And a flood of images: the ‘funny uncle’ we never spoke of (but guarded all the little girls from); the uncle whom I never told anyone groped me on the way back to the dorm. The psychopath who stood outside my bedroom window and whispered I can seeee you through the screen, until I ran from the house as he came through the back door. The colleague — a friend, I thought — who forced his drunken way into my house, saying he loved me, and then tried to force his way into me. As my two sons slept in the bedroom down the hall.

rage2

via Google

Even as I write, more memories surface: ostensible ‘friends’ who made fun of the feminist theory that kept me from suicide one dark year; a ‘nice guy’ who asked why I wore my long hair up, and dressed in button-downs and khakis at work, when I was so ‘pretty’…? The groping of strangers in countries where women are always chattel. Sisters who were groped, beaten, raped.

So yes, America: ALL WOMEN. And it needs to stop. Because now? It’s evident that no protection is enough from some men. They’ll shoot you just because you’re female. We kind of suspected that all along. We just try hard — very hard, and mostly successfully, and mostly every day – not to think about  it. Until they finally kill us. And then? Rage. The same rage that lurks beneath the surface every day. The same rage that fuels #yesallwomen. Go read. We need to remember.



Previous Posts

the pain we bring to others
There are days we will hurt people. Days when our thoughtless actions will crack through the protective shells we all wear to get us through our lives. There are times when some thoughtless action -- with no ill in

posted 1:36:57pm Mar. 02, 2015 | read full post »

contrasts and contradictions (or not...)
See the snow outside? It's inches -- nothing for Boston (they should be so lucky!), but a big deal for Oklahoma. And more to come, the weather folks predict.  A cardinal is on one feeder, a vivid splash of colou

posted 11:42:43am Feb. 28, 2015 | read full post »

a long long time ago, or, updating our moral software
  This used to be the way America looked at women voting. And to be honest, some of these jokes are still around. But for the vast majority of Americans, we accept that women have the right to vote. Even though it's not in the original Constitution. That's an important 'even though,' sin

posted 10:52:31pm Feb. 26, 2015 | read full post »

the vulnerability of grace
This is a post about sharing. About a man who has inspired me for a long time, and his impending loss. It's about intelligence, wit, and vulnerability. And the irreplaceable magic of those braided qualities

posted 4:25:29pm Feb. 23, 2015 | read full post »

lists, writing, and cleaning the mind's house
  Ever since I was a little girl, I've visualised my mind as an old house. And lately it seems more like a house that needs a LOT of TLC -- re: it's  kind of a mess. So when the facilitator at the

posted 3:50:10pm Feb. 21, 2015 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.