speaking up 3

Here are speaking up and speaking up 2.

More events in my life:

I am on the metro in Washington, DC. It is not rush hour. I am reading my book.

I suddenly realize  as the metro stops, my car is empty. I am the only one in the car. One man gets on. I am hyperalert. He walks down the car and sits next to me.

The car starts up. I stare at my book.

“Hi.” he says, “What’s your name?”

I don’t answer.

“C’mon. What’s your name?”

“I am reading my book. I don’t want to talk.”

“C’mon, baby, be nice.”

I stand up, purse and book. “Excuse me.” I step by him and stand at the metro car door. I get off that car at the next stop and move to the next one with people on it. Shaking with both the threat and anger, that I have to deal with this.

2. I take a dance class in Washington, DC. I work at the National Institute of Health. I leave my car at NIH and ride the metro.

One night I get off the metro at NIH and I am riding up the escalator, with my backpack.

A man, clearly drunk, steps up on the escalator beside me, and says “Hi, baby, what’s your name?”

“LEAVE ME ALONE!” I snarl and stomp up the escalator. It is dark and there are very few people at the stop and in the lot. I am in danger from this drunk.

I am walking fast at the top, away from the escalator, when I hear running steps behind me. WHACK! He takes a swing at me and runs off. He hits my backpack and not me. I am screaming at him.

He is gone. I run to my car, get in, and sit there, hands on the wheel. Shaking. There is a part of me that wonders what I would do if he crossed the road in front of my car.

My next class is not dance. I take tae kwon do.

3. I have used my tae kwon do once so far. Where? In first year medical school.

No way, you say.

Yes, way.

We have lecture after lecture in the same hall. We usually sit in the same places. I am newly married. The guy behind me starts tickling my neck during a lecture, with a pen. I twitch a couple times and then hear muffled giggles and realize that it’s the person behind me.

I stiffen and wait until I am really ready. Breathe. The tickle comes. I snap a basic block back and forward: and have his pen.

He SCREAMS!

The whole class turns towards us. The lecturer stops, staring. I am facing forward, holding the pen down low, not moving. He has the entire room staring at him, everyone but me. He doesn’t say a word. You could hear a …. pen…. drop.

The lecturer shakes his head and continues.

I keep the pen.

Just think, he’s a doctor.

I took the photograph when we were in Wisconsin. I went to UW Madison. I like being a badger.

beer and the Supreme Court

I want to reblog this and ask: Mr. Kavanaugh, you drank alcohol as a teen. How do you feel about your daughters drinking alcohol as teens? Is this acceptable? Is this expected? Will you turn a blind eye? Or do you have a double standard? Can teen males drink but teen females are “asking for it” and are “bad girls” if they behave the same way?

This matters. I don’t want a Supreme Court Justice who thinks it is fine for either teen males or teen females to drink and use drugs. So, sir, speak up: what message are you sending to all teens in the United States?

https://therecoveringlegalist.com/2018/09/28/the-elephant-in-the-kavanaugh-hearing-room/

hope for change

I want us to have a culture where teens don’t drink to black out or to where they tell themselves that it’s ok to harm another person, where women are not punished for speaking up, where neither boys nor girls nor men nor women tolerate rape or domestic violence or discrimination or hatred.

fall

For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: fall.

Trigger warning: speaking up 2, to follow speaking up.

So: why do the WOMEN have to speak up?

Why don’t MEN speak up? Ok, gentlemen: every man who participated in a “train” or a gang rape or who had sex with a woman who they now are not sure consented or who has made more money than a woman in the office and knows it or who has sexually abused a child: how about YOU speak up. FALL ON YOUR KNEES AND SPEAK UP.

Confess. Pay reparation. We know you are out there. Are you waiting for ALL of the women to speak up? How about you step forward, bust yourself, bust the other men? When are you going to be MEN? When are you going to take responsibility?

Why do WOMEN have to speak up? Let’s see the MEN speak.

Our tears have been falling for years. It’s time for men to speak, to bust each other, to break the silence, to confess: speak up.

Bill Cosby and the Real Men

I do not want to decide if Bill Cosby is guilty. I am not on a jury nor am I his judge. But I do have a question: Where are the men?

Women have come forward. Woman after woman. They were younger than him and he was already famous and on his way. But there were men there too, who worked with him. Why haven’t we heard from them? We have heard from only one man.

Various people say how dare these women come forward after all this time. But back then, I think that if a woman had gone to the police, the attitude may well have been, “You were out with a married man. You can’t prove anything, you slut whore.”

Why do I say this? In my second year of medical school, in 1990, we had a lecture about domestic violence and rape. A day or two later, I was with four people from my class: we were two men and three women.

One of the men said, “If I were a woman who was raped, I would never tell anyone.”

I said, “Oh, I’d be in the emergency room getting a rape kit done for evidence and I’d have his ass in jail immediately.”

Silence. Then he said, “Um. Wow. Can I ask why?”

I explained that I had been sexually abused by a neighbor at seven. Being a bit clueless, I asked my mother about what it meant when a guy rubbed his penis on a girl. She explained sex. I got worried that I was pregnant, I was sure that I was no longer a virgin and I thought it was my fault. And I told my four year old sister never ever to go near him. I think my mother had no idea what was in my head. I had a doctor appointment a few months later and decided that I probably was not pregnant, because surely the doctor would have noticed. I felt guilty and at fault for letting it happen. I was seven. On the school bus to second grade I thought sadly that I was the only girl who was not a virgin.

I was lucky in the I could and did stop it. It was not a family member. I stood up for myself at seven.

I revisited it in college. I heard a program about how rape victims feel and how guilty and at fault they feel. And how they are often treated with suspicion, what were they doing to inflame the man? I was so stunned as they described the feelings that I had at age 7 that I burned the bacon I was cooking.

“So,” I said, “If I walk naked down the street, I am fine with being arrested for indecency. But no one can rape me. That is violence and it is illegal.”

The medical school men continued to look at me. “See?” I said, “I am ok. I think the perception is still that women are “ruined” and destroyed by rape. The numbers of women experiencing rape or domestic violence is one in four.”

“Yes,” said one of the guys, “But I didn’t believe that.”

“Well, we have three women here.” We all looked at the other two. One nodded yes and the other shook her head no.

After the child abuse lecture, the male student came to me. “I thought of you during the lecture. What you said will make me treat women who have been abused differently. Thank you.”

So: where are the men who worked with Cosby? Was this an open secret?

If the women are telling the truth, then the men who worked with Cosby know. I am afraid that the silence means:

They didn’t want to know.
They turned a blind eye.
They tell themselves they can’t prove it.
He was the goose laying the golden egg.
Those girls deserved what they got, he was a married man.

So: Where are the REAL MEN who worked with Bill Cosby? If it is true and they stay silent, they are accomplices. Every single one of them should call their lawyer and say, “I saw evidence that supports what the women are saying. Please contact their lawyers so that I can make a statement.” Or: “I am willing to make a statement that I worked with Bill Cosby for x years and never saw anything suspicious.” Not a statement for the press. A statement that they will stand by in court: that it’s the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

And think if it had been men being preyed on. Take that as a scenario. Men would have screamed the house down and what’s more they would have been believed. And they would not be accused of leading him on or being whores or being sluts or asked what they were wearing.

Will the Real Men who worked with Bill Cosby please stand up.