Me too. I will. Four simple words, not so simple concept. As I have no experience in a woman’s mind or body, this will not be an attempt to identify as such. That being said, until recently sexual misconduct has been an ongoing issue throughout all written history with little discouragement of practice. Different variations in different cultures, ultimately all leading to the same accounts of unwilling participants in a sexually driven world. The lines often debated, the arbitrary guidelines often changed, research driving most of new legislation. Not to imply globally, but at least on a national level. In a world full of sexual innuendo and provocative advertising, where does the line get drawn? It should be simple, the two letters that so easily roll of the tongue into one syllable; NO. Easy but not simple, this world isn’t black and white, divisive situations that often blur the lines tend to leave more issues to be dealt with than should be. Personal responsibility in most other factions of life rarely being taught bleeding into what is often perceived as a cut and dry issue. Confusion being spread, hypocrisy running rampant, ever-changing misconceptions too often jumbling the morality of an act that through history has taken many different forms and holds varied reverence in many different cultures.
Who’s at fault? Well that should be a simple answer. Yet it never seems to be. Jumping too quickly at the implication of malfeasance without evidence ruins lives. Social dictation generally driving this outcome, shouting to the masses “victim shaming” when the opinion differs from that of the emotional majority. That has been shown in many cases throughout the country in esteemed educational institutions. Men deprived of their educational experience due to a false claim, regardless of the evidentiary rebuttal. No formal indictment, solely discretionary hearings dictated by the college’s board and disciplinary committee. One could make the observation that this practice also presses on the legitimacy of the argument. In taking it upon themselves to dictate the repercussions of alleged misdeeds, the esteemed institutions also undermine the legitimacy of the legislation put in place to protect all people. Without being able to accuse or face your accuser, no resolution can be made. This system, set up to protect the victim and the wrongfully accused alike fails to effect change if it isn’t being utilized.
It’s simple, no means no. But is it that simple? I recently read a girls account of a night that she contributed to the sexual misconduct epidemic. If I could remember where I read it I would put a link to it. A friend and herself ended up at a party. Both got intoxicated, and ended up in the bedroom. In her account, she recalls that during the encounter on several occasions she would come to (her senses) and realize what she was doing. They would stop for a short time, start making out, then back at it again. She recalls waking up the next day and realizes the deed she ended up doing the night before, and much to her horror the friend she had been doing it with. Essentially in the reading she was comparing this to a #metoo situation. Why? Because she couldn’t take responsibility for her at minimum reckless actions. By no means is it ok that she felt she had been taken advantage of, but she was complicit in the act. Drinking too much (not to be confused with sex with a sober individual) doesn’t negate someone from being held personably accountable. Learn from mistakes of not only yourself, but of others that do share the horror stories related to partying.
The movies show worse, it wasn’t that bad, she asked for it anyways. Here comes that word…. No, no, no, no she didn’t ask for it. We are not some pre-evolutionary species that can only assert ourselves by sexual domination. Unless she’s invited you to take a tour of the land down under, your passport is denied. Regardless of how much cleavage was showing, regardless of how short the shorts were, there is no all access pass for you based on her attire. It doesn’t matter if she winked at you the one time at Starbucks while you were standing in line. None of it unless she specifically states her willingness and desire to fornicate gives you cart blanche. But she came to the party knowing what could happen. No. Her being passed out on the bed is not an open invitation for you to cross the border. Arguments like these are as unfounded as they are idiotic. Unless she explicitly tells you she wants a token on the It’s A Small World ride, its shut down for maintenance.
Now with the previous being said, I will reiterate the fact that a woman’s attire or demeanor does not imply a person’s proclamation of consent. Without the explicit continued consent, you are raping her. However. A big however. On an evolutionary basis, procreation is essential to sustaining life by definition. As sophisticated as we may have become, with the abilities to control our own actions, there is still a primal instinct in our makeup. While we are a species that performs sexual intercourse for pleasure, we still follow social and visual cues to attract or show attraction for potential partners. What am I getting at you ask? If we can almost see your nipples in your shirt and your ass cheeks are hanging out the shorts you are wearing, don’t be surprised if a man makes mention of it or at minimum takes notice of it. Well he should respect me, he shouldn’t stare at me, he shouldn’t be harassing me. Again, regardless of evolutionary greatness, we are still mammals and you are giving full display of the available goods, even if not so available. While a constant barrage of inappropriate comments or any unwanted physical contact is distasteful, disgusting, and wrong, an attentive reaction is common and I would be willing to say engrained behavior (to an extent). To be naïve to that is absurd. Dressing more conservatively isn’t an assault on your freedom, it’s a tool to bring less focus on your breasts buttocks and vagina (all the areas among others used in sex and foreplay).
Well we are tired of the objectification of women. Hypocrisy rearing its vengeful head. Millions made by participants in careers such as modeling, acting, singing, and other various career choices beg to differ. One simplistic answer. Don’t do it. Don’t want objectification as a model, don’t do it. An industry specifically dependent on how an article of clothing looks on the body. Acting. Regardless of noble intentions to portray a character, an industry perpetuated on selling tickets, and as the old saying goes, sex sells. Provocative clothing, scenes, and actions in conjunction with a well written script are part of the pillar of selling tickets. Again, stand up and don’t do it. Singing or other entertainment venues, there’s no need to wear a one piece overly customized leotard, there’s no need for ass cheek length shorts or skirt with designer customized brazier. People are there to hear you sing first and foremost. The expression my body my choice gets shouted in relation to other hot topic issues, yet the choice is never made to wear something that doesn’t invite objectivity. A woman’s choice is entirely her own, but one thing I can say, to make the choice to stand up to objectification can also mean sitting down. Denying the opportunity for one to cast you in such a role. All that being said, is only true if you feel objectified. Again, my body my choice also means not caring what anybody thinks of what you’re wearing.
Considering so many “prominent” “men” being shown for who they really are, I am thankful that people are finally coming forward. The only way to address the issue is to bring it to light. Hopefully one day sooner than later, wrongs such as what have been recently reported on can be stopped in its tracks before they claim countless victims. But the focus of the discussion can’t be boiled down to one narrative. While this may be a seemingly singular issue, the topics of discussion are far greater than simply sex and abuse. It’s an issue that must be expounded upon in every facet of life. Many different viewpoints need to be discussed to come to a solution and begin to truly educate.