Some violence against women and girls is overt, immediate and terrifying. Unfortunately, much of it is covert and pernicious. For instance, I have a friend who once accepted a ride home from a man she found creepy because she didn’t want to offend him. And she didn’t want to take the subway alone at night. In the event, nothing happened. Not until I jumped up and down and flapped my arms and said “No. No. No. Say no. Sometimes you must say no.” Violence against women proliferates because we live in patriarchal cultures. Here in North America, my friend can’t say no because she is reminded a dozen times a day that pleasing men is the key to her welfare. It’s a very good idea to demand that governments around the world make and enforce laws that protect women and girls from violence. But we also need to raise awareness about the root of the problem, which is male domination of women. To put it in the worst possible terms: we don’t signify unless we are prey. If we recognize this, each one of us can combat the oppression that legitimates violence, and threats of violence, in all its forms. We don’t need to depend only on the government and the police for safety. We can also depend on each other. And we can harness the power of NO.
Credits to creators
boots: lassitude & ennui (from the L’Accessoires black friday event)
glasses: Swallow (open gift in store)
necklace: 7891 (resizable; from fi*friday)
fur: (fd) (at Collabor88; Portia wears only fake fur assembled by garment workers paid a living wage and subject to no sexual harassment)
I don’t know who that clown is, but I encountered him at Rotten Defiance.
This picture was GIMPed.