"The problem with an incident like this is it is obviously the work of a madman." -Sheriff Bill Brown of Santa Barbara, California
Yes, Bill Brown. It would be a hell of a lot easier if this were the work of a madman. It would be a lot more convenient to sidestep the implications of thousands of years of patriarchy and misogyny and male privilege. We could all sleep easier at night if this were an isolated incident. The kid was crazy, right?
Or maybe he was the product of a system that teaches men from birth that they have the right to have sex with women. No matter if the woman doesn’t want to have sex- she’s just being coy. Don’t worry if she says no- you just have to convince her. She’ll probably like it once you get going anyway, right? If you’re nice to her, she has to get into bed with you.
Wait, she didn’t? You bought her dinner and she didn’t fuck you? You stopped for flowers and she didn’t kiss you? You used your best moves and she still said no?
She’s just a slut then. Worse- she’s a fucking tease. She used you. Nice guys always finish last. She wants an asshole, they all do.
Wrong. Totally, completely, horribly wrong. We don’t owe you anything. Dinner isn’t a voucher for sex. Just because you’re nice to us doesn’t mean we have to sleep with you. And when we kiss you but push you away when you put your hands up our shirt, back the fuck off.
The entire world feels heavy today but the worst part is, it’s this heavy for many women around the world every day.
Pay attention. Do your part. Stand up for what you believe in even if you’re standing alone- that’s integrity. Even if the boys don’t think you’re cute anymore once you say you’re a feminist- they’re not the ones you want anyway. Stay educated. I know how tempting it is to turn off the TV, to shut off the evening news because it’s upsetting but we can’t afford to turn a blind eye to the consequences of the proliferation of anti-women, anti-feminist, misogynistic ideals. We have to listen to the horror stories. We have to help our women. We have to make the world a safer place for our daughters. It’s okay to get angry. You should be angry. We should all be angry.
Please, pay attention. Even when the news makes you cry, keep your eyes open. When you want to cover your ears with your hands, listen instead to the cries echoing around the world every single day. Get angry and stay angry.
Six people are in an early grave because male privilege made a man think that death was a proportionate punishment for women not wanting to sleep with him. If that doesn’t convince you of why we need feminism, I don’t know what will.
Rest in peace to the people lost in this tragedy. I can’t find the words to say how heavy the weight of the world feels today. I’m so sorry.