Oh look, a post.
I've covered something like this topic a while ago, before this blog existed, but now's as good a time as any, and the circumstances of now make it appropriate for me to phrase this as a letter.
I know it "hurts your feelings" when I get annoyed at you touching me without my consent. It hurts my feelings when you touch me without my consent. It hurts my feelings when you yell at me for being annoyed when you touch me without my consent. It hurts my feelings when you touch me without my consent in a way that I've asked you not to do more times than I can count. It hurts my feelings when you yell at me for being annoyed when you touch me without my consent in a way that I've asked you not to do more times than I can count. It hurts my feelings when you promote rape.
Yes, I said "promote rape." Because once you establish that consent does not matter, the difference between kissing the back of someone's neck and putting your penis in their vagina is a difference only of degree, not of kind.
I'm not worried about myself, because I don't listen to you anymore. But my sister will probably have a boyfriend in a couple of years - what are you going to say to her if she comes home and tells you he raped her?
"So he put his penis in your vagina without your consent. Oh my god such a big deal."
"You'd better not break up with him over it."
"In life, people are going to have sex with you sometimes. Deal with it!"
That's, of course, if she tells you. I certainly wouldn't.
Are you disappointed that the only safety videos you could find when we were kids were ones that said that you are the only one who can let someone touch your body? Would you rather have shown us ones that said that our parents were the only ones who could let someone touch our body, and it was their consent that mattered?
Even if you accept that there are situations where you will have to be touched, isn't it better to start from a position of "No one can touch you without your consent" and carve out exceptions from there, instead of taking as your axiom "People will touch you. Get over it"?
I don't see why it's so difficult to understand. Having sex with a consenting person is, at worst, bad sex. Having sex with a non-consenting person is rape. Hitting a consenting person is sport, or BDSM, or Fight Club. Hitting a non-consenting person is assault. Touching a consenting person is affection or theatre or medical examination. Touching a non-consenting person...?
"It hurts my feelings" is an understatement. It makes me feel sick to my stomach. I keep my mouth shut almost 100% of the time - when friends of friends hug me without asking, when my grandmother puts her hand on my thigh or pats my behind or when my aunt comes up behind me and squeezes the back of my neck - because I've decided it's not worth being yelled at every single time. You have no idea what it took just to tell my roommate's boyfriend off when he ran into the room and jumped on me before we'd even met. She may think I'm a bitch for it. But that one time is the anomaly among all the times I am touched against my will and decide I don't want to be punished on top of and for being violated.
You are supposed to be the people I can trust. You are supposed to be the people around whom I don't have to worry about my social credit.
I guess I should be glad that so far these confrontations have only taken place in private. Every time this happens is another object lesson: if you touch someone against her will, telling her to get over it and not hurt your feelings will let you get off scot-free. Is this the attitude you want to be cultivating? Do you want to be telling people how to sexually assault your daughters, and your daughters to shut up and take it?
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Oh look, a post.
- ▼ 2009 (82)