I LIVE IN A MAN'S WORLD
I live in a world of violence. I live in a world of pain, of sadness. I live in a world of rape and coercion.
I live in a mans world.
I live in a world where the normal man is masturbating to Hustler magazine and gonzo movies. I live in a world where I watch women be relegated to body parts for the profit of males.
I live in a mans world.
I live in a world in which men buy our bodies for sex. I live in a world that sees its men masturbating to rape, violence and underage sex with women.
I live in a man’s world.
I live in a world in which women are being forced to act out the painful, degrading images that men view and want from us. A world in which the men are able to walk away from Nike shoes but not from the degradation of women.
I live in a mans world.
I live in a world where empathy is given only to men. A world in which men expect women to allow them to have anal sex with them and who use it as a means to degrade the woman they’re with.
I live in a mans world.
I live in a world in which the women do it for the amusement of men.
I live in a world where it’s perfectly normal and acceptable for a man to fantasize about children and rape.
I live in a world that tells me orgasms are worth more than lives. Where everyday men tell me I’m a prude and a fascist for feeling empathy for women and their degradation.
I live in a mans world.
This is the world I live in, this is the world I wake up to every day. A world in which orgasms are worth lives and the right to abuse women is touted as Free Speech to protect the interests of the men who wish to harm them, control them, dominate them.
I live in a world in which the most popular pornographic movie ever made, Deep Throat, starred a slave. A woman who ran from her abusive husband and whose husband then dragged her back, a world in which the men in her life forced her to have sex with animals, with objects and it is touted as a ‘Right’ for men to view this.
I live in a world in which 4 men can ejaculate on a woman’s face and it is called empowering. A world in which men have taught our daughters that it’s appropriate and right for our sexuality to be used as men see fit.
I live in a world in which No doesn’t mean No. A world in which women die and are raped and beaten by men. A world in which the screams of the sex slaves and the cries of the prostitutes and porn queens are forever silenced.
I am amazed at the world in which I live. I am amazed that so many of our brothers and fathers are quick to organize boycotts and political protests against the injustices surrounding them. Except when it comes to women.
I am saddened by a world in which our bodies become commercialized. In which our sex is on display. I’m saddened when another woman tells me her story of being forced to act out scenes in pornographic movies and magazines with men.
I am saddened that our fathers, brothers and husbands do not care.
I am hurt that our pain is ignored. I’m afraid of the man who looks at pornography, afraid of what that man may ask of his wife or girlfriend later that night. I am afraid for his partner, afraid for her pain and her degradation. If you look at porn I fear for the women in your life. I fear for their safety, I fear for their self-esteem and their state of mind.
I fear for the safety of our children when men sexualize children and place them, like so many lambs to the slaughter, upon the alter of Male Pride and ego. It frightens me that men do not want to save their mothers and sisters from the pain of rape. It saddens me that they say they are against rape and then help themselves to pictures of women being raped but never volunteer to work at a rape crisis center.
I live in a world of doublespeak. A world of free speech for the ones who can afford it at the expense of the most vulnerable in our society.
Men, in our society, do not care about women and it hurts me because I believe they can care about us. I hear the words from the men and they ring, large and hollow in my ears. The empty excuses crafted to protect their freedom of speech at the expense of women and children’s lives.
I feel defeated by a culture in which I am leered at, whistled at and abused in front of men and they turn their heads from me.
It saddens me that I am expendable to my lovers, brothers and husbands.
It creates a void within me when yet another man stands upon the podium of male power and tells the women who have felt the vicious sting of their pride that we are prudes.
Are we prudes because we cannot, will not tolerate your idea of our sexuality? Are we prudes because we hear the women screaming and we cannot handle the sound of it? Are we prudes or are you just sick?
What does it say about you? What does your porn say about you? Does it say that you have empathy for people? I think not. Does it say that you have compassion and understanding for women? No it doesn’t.
If I were a man I would live in a world that told me I was better than half of the population. If I were a man I could take my power from women around me. If I were a man I could get off to images of women being degraded and dehumanized and it would reaffirm my place as superior in this world. If I were a man I could walk down the street unmolested, in comfortable clothing, unafraid of rape, of men taking my sex.
If I were a man I could scream from the rooftops that I was against rape and then, in private, I could masturbate to rape. I could tell people that I was against torture and abuse of children and women and then, I could go on my merry way and not bother with helping them, it is, afterall a ‘Woman’s issue’. I will have done my part to simply speak out against it, acting against it is something I would have the luxury of not bothering with.
If I were a man I could go to church on Sunday and show everyone just how pious and godly I was before going home and getting on the internet and looking up, “Hot teen pussy”.
But I am not a man. I am a woman and I cry when I hear another story of abuse and degradation at the hands of someone’s lover or father.
These men who choose not to help, these men who claim they are for women’s rights, that they are against rape, have rarely stood out from the crowd to contest the offenses. I go to a rally and I see no male faces in the sea of women. I go to the shelters and I see no men working towards ending the suffering of women and children. The faces aren’t there, or they are there in such small numbers that it boggles my mind.
I know that men don’t care. I live in a world in which I know I am expendable to men. My suffering remains unheard by men though they readily absorb the falsified cries of delight from a woman who is being penetrated by 2 men.
This world is a scary world, it is a large world and it eats us alive. Women are born into this world and labeled as girls first and foremost. We are trained to behave in the ways that men have decided we should behave. Women fear the night, we fear the streets and we hear your message, You do not care about us.
We hear that message loud and clear. We hear it every time you say you hate rape but continue to engage in behavior that puts you at risk of masturbating to someone’s rape. Some woman’s degradation. We hear you say you hate rape but hear you say that ‘nagging’ a woman to have sex with you is a-ok.
We hear your message and we are saddened, angry, frustrated at your ignorance and selfishness. We are unable to understand how you can cry against the abuse of women and yet turn your face from the eyes of the porn star, the eyes that are dead and empty. We hear your excuses and we see them for what they are, excuses.
We are puzzled that you are so angry about Iraq, so infuriated about the Iraqi war, and yet, you are not horrified at the rapes being played out every day on your favorite free internet porn site. We are horrified and your silence scares us.
But there are some among us who refuse to be silenced. Despite our fear and despite knowing that your hands hit and your dicks stand ready to rape us we walk. We are willing to walk amid you, willing to fight you and scream at you, to tell you that you remain deaf to us, to our suffering, as long as you remain in the grip of pornography. There are those among us that do this work, who speak against it and you hate us for it. You wish us death and call us names.
We hear your message. We hear that you are saying we are expendable and it saddens us and makes us afraid and confused that our lovers and brothers can look at us so angrily, that they can be so cruel and cutting, all for a picture of a woman being raped.
We are shocked at your inability to understand rape and molestation. How you can eagerly say that women who are posing in your pictures do so of their ‘own free will’ when that free will entails a history teeming with rape, abuse and molestation. That you can so readily convince yourself that their ‘free will’ is actually free after a life of being primed to be degraded.
Quite frankly we are appalled at your behavior; we are saddened to see that our boys, whom we’ve raised with the love of a woman, have turned into such heartless creatures. So far removed from females that our rapes and our pain is dead to you. That you would look at a girl being posed in your photos and get off to them knowing that they have spent a lifetime being abused and hurt by men, that you would call this ‘free will’.
We see you rise up against manufacturers that use child labor. We see you boycott Wal-Mart when it comes out that they’ve locked illegal immigrants into their stores overnight. But never do we see you stand in solidarity with women when it comes to the largest violators of our rights. The Pornographers and the Pimps.
Instead you cry out, “We just need to stop the abuse! No reason to throw away an entire industry because of a few rapes!” You scream it indignantly while never giving the same to Wal-Mart or Nike or Reebok shoes.
I ask you this, you say that the industry is salvageable. That one bad apple doesn’t spoil the bunch. What I ask of you is how much sewage do you need in your wine before you throw the wine away? You tell us everyday that the entire barrel could be sewage, that over 50% of it could be sewage and yet you drink that wine and claim we should keep it.
We are confused as to why you hold these things so dearly, though, when we think about it we understand that you are afraid. You fear women and you fear the power of women. You fear that we are as good as you, as decent as you, as worthy as you and those of us that walk among you tearing the filth from your hands scare you the most.
We understand. And, to us, you matter.
You matter because you are our brothers and fathers and lovers and your fear is as palpable as the fear of the woman you slobber over in your glossy pictures or on your dirty computer screens. We rise up with you against the Iraqi war. We fight by your side to end the humiliation of the Iraqi people, yet, for our fight, you are not there. You refuse to stand in unity with us because there is power in your pictures.
Yes, there is power in porn. There is power in a medium that seeks to destroy us for your gain, for your benefit. You probably turn to it when you’re stressed, when you’ve had a bad day at work, when your wife scolds you for something. You probably turn to it when you’re feeling powerless because it tells you the lies you want to hear. The lies that make you feel better about being a man, the lies that tell you that women like to be hurt and degraded.
I live in a dangerous world. A world in which I have been raped, punched, strangled and tortured. A world in which my sex has been bought and sold like so many loaves of bread. I live in a world in which pornography has been used to rape me, to hurt me and to rape and hurt so many unheard thousands of women that their screams become ineffective. We hear your message. When you tell us, “Not in MY porn”, when you tell us that you have “Good porn!”. When you earnestly try to tell us that you have a RIGHT to your porn we hear your message,
We do not matter