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The Saturday Sex Blog [Slut]: Why I’m Marching in SlutWalk NYC

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Why I’m Marching in SlutWalk NYC

Rapists rape people, not outfits.

I was at the Occupy Wall St. protest the other day, when a young woman handed me a flyer with the words “Marcha de las Putas” emblazoned at the top. I started laughing and called her back and asked her if she knew what the words meant. She laughed and asked me to turn the flyer over, and there it was, a flyer promoting “Slut Walk NYC.” I thought the idea was so fuckin’ cool and I wanted to know more.

I learned that Slut Walk  (click here) is a global movement to end sexual violence that began in Toronto. After a rash of sexual assaults across the York University campus a police officer told a group of college-aged women that in order to avoid being victimized they “should stop dressing like sluts.” This set off a wave of marches across the globe dubbed: SlutWalk. SlutWalk means many different things to many different people.

Some might object to the usage of the word “slut.” I happen to believe it’s a great response. A huge diversity of women, men and trans people marching under the banner of SlutWalk ridicules the term slut, makes it devoid of meaning. It poses a challenge to what it means to be slutty and tears down the barriers between women that our sexist society attempts to erect. Rather than attempting to reclaim the language of misogyny, the SlutWalk phenomenon has the potential to pose a direct challenge to the idea of the “deserving victim.” The truth is that one in four women is raped in their lifetime — regardless of dress or behavior. The majority of women who are raped are subjected to it by a partner, friend, family member or a person previously known to them — not a seedy stranger in a dark alley.

The premise is simple: anyone who is raped did not deserve it and certainly doesn’t deserve to be blamed for the attack. To suggest it is a woman’s fault that she was raped because of a dress she may have worn is utterly disgusting and disrespectful to humanity. There have been over 70 SlutWalk marches worldwide since April and now it has come to the Center of the Known Universe, the greatest city.

I’m marching because no woman, no human being, experiencing the horrible violation of a sexual assault should have to stand alone.

I’m marching because living in a society in which 1 in 4 women get raped is unacceptable.

I’m marching because slut-shaming and anti-sex values have no place in an evolved society.

I’m marching because no woman should be afraid to give voice and to stand up to sexual predators.

I’m marching because I am sick to my core of all the stories I hear — the so many women who tell me they’ve been raped, many of whom have never shared that with anyone else.

I’m marching because I don’t want to live in a rape culture that teaches sexual predation is a form of love.

But most of all, I’m marching because the following, written so many years ago, is still, tragically, relevant today…

 * * *

Missoula Rape Poem

— by Marge Piercy

 

There s no difference between being raped
and being pushed down a flight of cement steps
except that wounds also bleed inside.

There s no difference between being raped
and being run over by a truck
except that afterward men as if you
enjoyed it.

There s no difference between being raped
and losing a hand in a mowing machine
except the doctors don’t want to get involved,
the police wear a knowing smirk,
and in small towns you become a veteran whore.

There s no difference between being raped
and being bitten by a rattlesnake
except that people ask if your skirt was short
and why you were out anyway.

There s no difference between being raped
and going head first through windshield
except that afterwards you are not afraid of cars
but half the human race.

Fear of rape is a cold wind blowing all the time
on a woman’s hunched back.
Never to stroll alone a sand road
through pine woods;
Never to climb a trail across a bald
without that aluminum in the mouth
when I see a man climbing towards me.

Never to open the door to a knock
without that razor just grazing the throat.
The fear of the dark side of hedges,
the back seat of the car,
the empty house rattling keys like a snake’s warning.
The fear of the smiling man
in whose pocket is a knife.
The fear of the serious man
in whose fist is locked hatred.

* * *

Info:COME JOIN US FOR SLUTWALK NYC ON OCTOBER 1, 2011! SEE YOU AT UNION SQUARE AT NOON FOR THE MARCH!THIS EVENT IS RAIN OR SHINE!11:00 AM: SIGN MAKING AT UNION SQUARE (BRING YOUR OWN MATERIALS)
12:00 PM: MARCH STARTING AT UNION SQUARE
1:00 PM: PERFORMANCES AT UNION SQUARE
2:00 PM: RALLY AT UNION SQUARE!

MARCH ROUTE: UNION SQUARE TO BROADWAY, BROADWAY TO 8TH STREET, 8TH STREET TO TO 2ND AVENUE, 2ND AVENUE TO THIRD STREET, THIRD STREET TO LAFAYETTE AVENUE, LAFAYETTE AVENUE BACK TO UNION SQUARE

 
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Written by:

Published on: October 1, 2011

Filled Under: Culture, Education

Views: 712

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  • Reggie

    Damned interesting post Eddie.