If all the men who have sexually harassed or assaulted or catcalled or otherwise objectified or inappropriately touched without asking or refused to believe allegations made by, another human under the guise of toxic masculinity and rape culture wrote “I’m sorry” in their status lines, people might begin to acknowledge and lift the veil on a problem so pervasive that we’ve put the onus on victims to self identify when we ALL know that we aren’t outliers. We are the norm. That can only mean one thing. Statistically these abuses aren’t being committed by masked men or particularly damaged men. They’re being committed by people we know. This problem is everywhere and we are surrounded by this problem. My heart hurts with the knowledge that we are the norm. But it also roars that if that’s to be the case, then the other side of that norm must also be made visible. Nothing but the whole truth.
To everyone sharing their stories, I’m sorry. I see you and I love you.
Not a single person weighing in deserved what happened. Not a single person weighing in is responsible for what happened. Somebody else is. And that somebody is shielded and coddled and reassured by a history of justifications, and deferences, and a cultural willingness to erase and downplay transgressions no questions asked particularly when the assailants have some proximity to power and nevertheless when the assailants are white.
We cannot act like these circumstances exist outside of race, and class, and gender identity, and sexual orientation, and privilege. We know that society LOVES to maintain the appearance of protecting white women, at all costs, while doing no such thing. AND ALSO we know that some of us don’t have the luxury of those appearances. We know that simply existing as black, or brown, or trans, or queer, or gender non conforming, or some combination of various marginalized identities renders you inherently unsafe. Rose McGowan wants to act like women are the new what? Replace the word “woman” with what?! How many trans woman of color have been killed this year? 27? Is this even accurately tracked? What has been done? Do we know they’re names? Why the fuck not. Does the ability to self identify on Facebook/ Twitter ask us to consider things about privilege and power? Are some of us more safe to self identify than others? I appreciate that this may be cathartic but is it REALLY loving?
Nothing but the whole truth.
We cannot heal what we refuse to see. We cannot heal what we refuse to admit. We cannot view our healing as anything but inextricably link. I will never be the victim of another victim. I will never be threatened by the needs of another human because those needs will never take from me. I’m not interested in liberation or a revolution or a resistance that does not include all of us. The default behaviors, assumptions, reactions do not include all of us. So if we’re just saying things, or doing things based on our singular perspectives then ASSUME that someone is being left behind. The world teaches us to be unwell and so acting from that unwellness STILL creates more sickness, no matter how well intentioned.
The alternative must be active. It must be conscious. It must be humble and compassionate. It must be eyes wide open and eager to heal even if doing so is uncomfortable and scary and forces us each to look in the mirror before taking the fight anywhere else.
My priority is our shared safety. Our shared sacredness and humanity and deservedness of LOVE and nothing less. Just because, we are worthy. No reasons needed or given. Just because.
So, Me Too.
fuck this exercise.