“The following day, I attended a workshop about preventing gender violence, facilitated by Katz. There, he posed a question to all of the men in the room: “Men, what things do you do to protect yourself from being raped or sexually assaulted?”
Not one man, including myself, could quickly answer the question. Finally, one man raised his hand and said, “Nothing.”
Then Katz asked the women, “What things do you do to protect yourself from being raped or sexually assaulted?” Nearly all of the women in the room raised their hand.
One by one, each woman testified: “I don’t make eye contact with men when I walk down the street,” said one.
“I don’t put my drink down at parties,” said another. “I use the buddy system when I go to parties.”
“I cross the street when I see a group of guys walking in my direction.”
“I use my keys as a potential weapon.” The women went on for several minutes, until their side of the blackboard was completely filled with responses.
The men’s side of the blackboard was blank. I was stunned. I had never heard a group of women say these things before. I thought about all of the women in my life — including my mother, sister and girlfriend — and realized that I had a lot to learn about gender.”
I think we’re getting to a point where we sometimes don’t really even understand or have any sort of concept of the things we get upset or indignant about. It’s just sort of a knee jerk-reaction thing. That’s kind of bizarre to me, because anger is so stressful. It’s the worst. So I don’t really get why people flock to get mad about something in droves, especially in instances where, if you examine the subject matter, there’s not a whole lot to get mad about.
I’ll give you an example.
Yesterday, I saw a screenshot going around of Willow Smith’s twitter account. Willow had posted some tweets saying that she had had a very horrible day and that sometimes, life is hard.
Immediately, like bitchy moths to a flame, everyone swarmed on the screenshot saying that Willow Smith is the daughter of an incredibly rich and famous actor and that she needs to shut up and get her act together.
You guys. You guys, Willow Smith is 11 years old. She is 11. She’s an 11 year old girl. She’s an 11 year old girl with hopes, fears, insecurities and confusion about the way the world works, probably not aided by the fact that her perspective of how the world works is entirely different from most children her age. She is not a politician with a cushy life complaining about parking tickets. She is not a rock star complaining about lenient sentences for horrific crimes. She is an 11 year old girl and she is perfectly capable of having a bad day.
Being indignant about this is so weird, because what sorts of things did you get upset about that age? You probably didn’t have absurdly rich parents but relative to someone less fortunate than you, were they really that terrible? Is that something you’re just going to pretend never happened to you so that you can comfortably assert that an 11 year old girl is not allowed to feel sad and lonely about anything if her dad is famous?
I’m trying to wrap my head around it. I’m actually having difficulty doing this. I genuinely cannot grasp it. Whenever I try to picture a bunch of people telling Willow Smith that because her dad is famous, she’s not allowed to feel sad about school or friends or work or pressure to outdo her debut single’s success or the swirling rumours about the outlook of her parent’s marriage on every grocery stand, I just sort of end up getting a headache and blood trickles out of my nose.
ed is…..blood? maybe? he does have a lot in common with karkat
al is hope!
wow i keep trying to come up with new title/aspect combinations for them all but my brain is like nope! ”ed can be….knight of blood…no wait thats karkat. well al is the page of ho- AHH NO THATS JAKE. err winry is maid of lif-? WAIT ADRIENNE.”