Feminism Friday

Friday, February 15, 2013

[Content note: discussion of rape and violence]

Yesterday was 14 February on my side of the world, and it may still be this date on your side as I write this. For most people, this day is associated with Valentine’s Day. I really have zero interest in Valentine’s Day, but the date 14 February has another significance this year: it’s the One Billion Rising Day. This day, which you can follow with the hashtag #1billionrising on twitter (and support and follow in so many other ways), represents a movement to speak out against and help stop violence against women all around the world. With this in mind, I thought it appropriate to share the following:

Her name was Reeva Steenkamp
It’s just “his girlfriend” who’s been murdered; Pistorius is still alive, so he’s not “tragic” - he can be the butt of jokes (mostly focusing on his disability, though there are also some about the fact that this happened on Valentines Day), and Steenkamp is simply collateral damage, mentioned - if she’s mentioned at all - as “his girlfriend”.

On my Facebook feed today, I’ve seen sports fans snickering at those jokes. But a woman - a woman named Reeva Steenkamp - is dead, shot in cold blood. And it’s not funny in the slightest.

One billion have been rising today to protest the continual violence against women across the world. Seven billion of us saw today just why these protests are still needed.

Related to this:

* One of the ‘jokes’ mentioned above about Reeva Steenkamp’s death is Caitlin Moran’s now-deleted tweet. My first instinct as a feminist is not to make some flippant joke about the violent death of a woman. Obviously Moran’s is. So many people look up to Moran, I wish she was just better.

* The lowest of the low, I have no words.

* You Are Not a Family Man If You Kill Your Family: A Primer on Writing About Domestic Violence.

Wave of support to end violence against women (one of the many articles on One Billion Rising)
The UN reports women aged 15 to 44 are more at risk from rape and domestic violence than from cancer, car accidents, war and malaria.

The 22 People Who Voted Against The Violence Against Women Act

CHRONICLES OF MANSPLAINING: Professor Feminism and the Deleted Comments of Doom
Like most women, I currently live in a society where violence, harassment and scary shit can break out at any moment, just because I told some random asshole “no” without bothering to be nice about it. Doing that is so dangerous that most women don’t dare; after a few scary incidents, they learn to make up excuses, to smile, to be sweet and welcoming, to act as if every single random asshole on the street is a precious new friend that they would just LOVE to stand outside of the Chipotle and chat with FOR HOURS, if only cruel fate had not intervened. That’s what it’s actually like, being a woman: Playing nice with every random asshole, because this random asshole might be the one who hurts you. And then, if he hurts you anyway, they’ll tell you that you led him on.

This post is so good, go read it in its entirety.

6 comments:

Rambling Tart said...

I feel sick to my stomach after reading the last quote, for she just described how I felt when a man was trying to get into my apartment to rape me. It makes me sick to think of it. I was so scared of what he might do if I caused a scene. It took me two hours to call the cops. Sick. Thankfully I'm stronger and wiser now and would pitch a helluva fit if anyone tried anything now. But it makes me sad that this legitimate fear is so prevalent, that creepy men get away with traumatizing and annoying us.

Sally said...

I love that Tiger Beatdown post. The articles you share always so deftly express the anger I've been holding in, unsure how to release. I should start collecting them and sending them to the people who start "mansplaining" when I try to discuss these issues with them.

Anonymous said...

bravo

Hila said...

Krista: That's awful, I'm so sorry. I find it very hard myself to explain to some of my male friends this permanent state of awareness you have to embody as a woman - this awareness that the world you live in has already marked you as a potential victim. And people wonder why I have strong views about feminism.

Sally: I love that post too, because she expresses that anger I keep locked in too. I suspect we're not the only ones.

Anonymous: !!

rooth said...

What a tragic, terrible loss of life.

Hila said...

Agreed, Rooth.