Wednesday 11 August 2021

Your Midweek Update for 08/11/21

Here’s my thing with feminism.

Oh god, I just lost ten followers with that sentence alone. Hear me out, please.

I grew up with the ramifications of the 70s serial killer era. When people left their doors unlocked and it was totally normal to hitchhike across the country in an unmarked white van. Let’s be real: there’s never been a point in history where it was “safe” to be a woman alone at night but in the 60s and 70s, it was more commonplace to walk the streets without your keys tucked between your knuckles.

Then everyone was murdered and enough people cared that everyone’s daily habits changed. Doors were locked, the manufacturers of pepper spray became trillionaires, and it was still a nightmare for women, but at least serial killers had to get more creative.

But that’s all it was. People didn’t stop killing each other, they just changed their tactics. All the tricks women do to keep themselves safe when their alone: it’s a challenge, not a deterrent. If you ever feel like you’re safe, you’re in more danger than ever. It’s safety theatre – like the TSA. If you go through the motions, you can pretend you’re safe but the truth is: the bomb was never in your shoes to begin with.

This is all aimed at women because, well, statistically they’re more likely to be attacked because the world is a terrible, terrible place. But that’s why I enjoy going after men. I can use the same tactics that have been used on women for decades and men are too na├»ve to believe they can be victims. The truth is: everyone could be a victim. No one is safe, only a portion of the population were raised to believe that, while the others were told… nothing. It makes them easy targets.

I know I should want to change that. Equity means teaching mean to be safe and to not attack women because they think they can get away with it (which they likely can). Equality means treating my victims equally, but you just can’t use the same tactics. I can’t lure a woman into the back alley of a club with the promise of too-drunk-to-consent sex. I can’t ask a man to pretend to be a friend and walk me to my car because some creepy guy has been following me. Obviously, there are exceptions because everyone has the capacity to be awful. It’s just not the same.

I should want to change the culture. I should want to shy away from utilizing stereotypes to get what I want. It’s just that… well… the stereotypes work to my advantage. I like to think that these men have it coming if they genuinely believe that I don’t notice them slipping something into my drink. And some of them might just want to walk me to my car but I know part of the reason why these nice men want to do that, is because I’m a woman.

Of course, I want to see a change in our culture. I would love to not get written up for having messy hair one of the days I go in to work while my DAUGHTER IS MISSING. At the same time: being able to use the stereotypes to my advantage makes my job so much easier.

But, like the TSA, I just have to adapt with the times and find new ways to take advantage of people’s perceived safety. It is a challenge – of course it is – but, like my serial killer forefathers, I will change.

I will face the challenge head-on.

As always, dear readers,

Stay Safe 

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