Monthly Archives: May 2012

What doesn’t kill us…

We’ve all heard the saying. What people don’t say is that what doesn’t kill you, can still leave you feeling dead and cold. Inside and out. Recent events have made me realize just how much evil there truly is in the world. And I know how silly that sounds, especially because as girls, we spend our whole lives being warned. They warn us about strangers, about boys that will break our hearts and eventually about bad men that can hurt us. But until you find yourself in that terrifying moment of truth, all those warnings are just a few more scary stories.

To say that I am deeply disturbed to see someone that I love in the situation that she’s in would be the understatement of the year.

This. Is. Killing. Me.

No matter how many times I reply the details of that night in my head, I still can’t believe that any of this is actually happening. I just can’t comprehend how things like this are still happening to women. With all the developments that we as a people have made, all the scientific milestones we’ve surpassed and social issues that we have resolved. Why is violence against women still tolerated? Why is it so difficult for a man to understand the word NO?

Our world is in desperate need of a rude awakening. Things need to change and a revolution has been a long time coming. Fighting for the right to vote was just a beginning, women should know that we are nowhere near done.

No means no regardless of the circumstances involved. A woman can spend the entire night flirting with you, dancing and even kissing. The moment she says NO, you’re done. That’s it. It’s over. You need walk the fuck away. It seems that somewhere along the way we blurred the lines of how that scenario should go and started justifying a wrong action by blaming the woman. Like one officer said, “it’s just a case of he said she said.” Or like the restaurant owner told me, “that’s what happens when you drink with people that get stupid.”

No, that’s what happens when people break the fucking law. No means no, ALWAYS. And still, statistics show that 78 people are raped every single hour of every single day.

Getting drunk does not constitute rape. Flirting does not constitute rape. Passing out is not a green light. If she’s too gone to speak, sex is not an option.

My body, my rules. Your body, your rules. That’s pretty clear, no questions about it.

Our government was created to protect us, our laws were written to serve as guidelines to ensure that protection.That was my understanding…have I been misinformed?

 

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Sometimes a hole in the wall is just that, a hole in the wall

During a recent visit home, a very dear friend of mine found herself in a severely dangerous situation. A situation that seems to have become an acceptable staple in certain social groups in Miami, the kind of social groups that involve powerful, and much older, men and younger women. While I am seasoned enough to know the common assumptions within these groups, those assumptions are not enough to justify a women being forced to do ANYTHING against her will. It’s sad to believe that these same men that run some of the areas most powerful companies, companies that help our community thrive and grow, have developed a sense of entitlement to any and everything within their sights.

Now it’s nothing new that men in positions of power and wealth have always had a “I’m above the law” type of air about them, but my concern is when did that transcend into “I can have you because I want to?”

As human beings put on this earth by a higher power, it is our birthright to have control of our own bodies and the thought that there are people in this world that believe they can take that right away from you because of their position makes my blood boil. At the end of the day, it is YOUR body and YOUR choice with whom you choose to share it with-regardless of who they are. No means no, but again, that’s not a new concept-just one certain men seem to lack the intelligence to understand.

To give you a better understanding of my current state, here’s a summary of what went down…

Mary was invited to a happy hour lunch at a cozy little hole in the wall wine bar by an old friend, let’s call her Judas. Judas told Mary that she wanted to introduce her to several of her friends, friends that she felt Mary would have many things in common with. Mary, being a not-so-big drinker, was a little hesitant but decided to go anyway and take the opportunity spend some time with her good friend. Lunch started around 1:30 p.m. that day. There were several powerful business men at the lunch along with Mary and Judas. The ate, they drank wine, they talked and they laughed. The time seemed to fly by and soon happy hour started. The music started playing and the group went upstairs to the VIP lounge area.

Throughout the night, there was one man in particular that took a strong interest in Mary. Let’s call him Lou. He seemed nice and polite at first, although much, much older. As the night progressed, Lou filled Mary’s wine glass every chance he could, his demeanor became more and more aggressive. But still, Mary knew that Judas would not allow anything to happen to her, that she would look out for her-as friends tend to do. Once upstairs, Mary told Judas she wasn’t feeling very well and Judas suggested she eat more and feed her.

At this point, Mary asked Judas to please go to the bathroom with her because she continued to feel bad, Judas declined and told her to just go. So she did. This particular happy hour venue did not have your usual bathrooms, separate for men and women and complete with bathroom attendants. It had one bathroom upstairs, complete with tub and all. As Mary sat there, trying to pull herself together, she decided it was time to go home. At that moment, Lou barged into the bathroom, closing the door behind him.

Mary and Lou struggled and she tried to break free from his grip and yelled for him to stop but no one came to her aid. Next thing she knew, she had blacked out and came to with him holding her over the sink, with her head in the water trying to wash the blood out of her hair. She ended up with a cracked head, bumps, bruises, a few bite marks and an immense feeling of betrayal. I won’t go into further detail as to what took place in that small, circle of hell, but it is definitely a situation that no woman should ever have to find herself in.

At that point, Judas was called into the bathroom and helped clean Mary up. The group then left, in what I would assume was quite a rush and dropped Mary off at home to sleep it off. I may not have much experience in this kind of situation, but when your friend is bleeding from a head injury, I’d assume the best course of action is to take her to the hospital right? If I remember correctly, sleeping after a head injury could very well kill you. Either way, that was the course of action that Judas choose that night.

The next day, as Mary tried to put the pieces of her “happy hour” lunch together, she could not shake the disgusting violated feeling she had, nor could she stop the terrifying images of her violator from popping into her head. The saddest part of this is that when she told Judas everything that happened to her, Judas responded with “that’s what happens when you get drunk.”

No, Judas. No. That’s not what happens when you get drunk.

According to Judas, if you flirt with a guy and lead him on, then you HAVE to do what he wants even if you don’t want to. Even if you are obviously too drunk to even stand, he has every right to do as he pleases with you. YOU should know better than to flirt.

Really?

I’m sorry, I did not realize that a kiss was a non-breakable contract for take me, I’m yours. Oh that’s right, that’s because it’s NOT. Unfortunately, to some people it is and to Judas, it happens all the time. But the fact that she lets that happen does not make it okay. As people, we have every right to change our minds at any given moment. The only permanent thing in this world in death, no exceptions.

At the end of this, I know that Mary will be okay. She is a strong woman and a fighter. She will overcome this horrible thing that was done to her and her violator WILL be brought to justice. No matter how powerful he may be.

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