Today is International Women’s Day, which means two things. First, we have to listen to people say stupid things like: “I’m not a sexist, but why isn’t there an International Men’s Day?” The correct answer to that question is International Men’s Day is in November and the more correct answer is (read in your best Hank Hill voice): “Shut up. You don’t really want to celebrate International Men’s Day. Stop being a baby always manufacturing fake controversies so you can feign outrage.”
The other thing thing that, apparently, happens on International Women’s Day is people lose their crap over a perfectly reasonable suggestion that men should not ever rape women. Zerlina Maxwell said as much on Fox News and now she is…wait for it…receiving rape threats.
“I knew going in I was going to get a lot of pushback,” Maxwell says. “I didn’t think I would receive rape threats. I can’t even go on my Facebook page; it’s full of people wanting to rape me. It’s too triggering. The amount of insensitivity is shocking.”
As Maxwell tells Salon, her point to Hannity was not about self-defense; it was about how we look at the big picture. “Telling every woman to get a gun is not rape prevention,” she explains. “The reality is that we need to be changing how we train and teach young men. We need to teach them to see women as human beings and respect their bodily autonomy. We need to teach them about consent and to hold themselves accountable.” And when we do, things change. After Canada launched a “Don’t be that guy” consent awareness campaign in 2011, the sexual assault rate dropped for the first time in years — by 10 percent.
Dear God, what the hell is wrong with people? There is absolutely no good reason why suggesting that people should not do something that is both morally abhorrent and a crime should be controversial. As Canada proved, it’s not only a valid message but an effective one if you are interesting in reducing sexual assault.
Don’t rape. Full stop. It’s really that simple.
It’s not even that hard to not rape. Yr Wonket on this post happens to be a man who has gone his entire life without ever raping anyone. Days go by, months and years even, where Yr Wonket doesn’t rape and doesn’t even think about the fact that he is not raping! This (sadly) might be a weird concept to some people, let’s push through to the end here, but someone else’s body doesn’t belong to you and you can’t do things to/with said other person’s body without their permission. Permission shall not be assumed based on skirt length. Let’s repeat that to make sure everyone heard it: Permission shall not be assumed based on skirt length. Also, it’s not ok to rape someone, or threaten to rape someone, for telling you this. No exceptions. Not even in space, to preempt an inevitable question someone out there is thinking.
It would be nice if those things could be left unsaid in 2013 America, but no. They must be said over and over again because too many of you don’t get it. Happy God Damn International Women’s Day.