16 Days of Activism against Gender Based Violence is an annual UN Women international campaign that kicks off on 25 November, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and runs until 10 December, Human Rights Day.
The theme this year is domestic violence, a timely one due to the global pandemic driven spike in gender based violence against women.
Join me to #orangetheworld together!
25 Nov is International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, in remembrance of Patria, Minerva and María Teresa Mirabal. 3 leaders of the underground Dominican Republic resistance, brutally murdered by their dictator Trujillo on Nov. 25 1960.
This sparked outrage and countywide reform, leading to a transition to democracy in the late 1970’s. The Mariposa (butterflies) as Dominicans call the sisters, became symbols of both democratic and feminist resistance.
Even in 2020, not everyone knows objectification is from the eyes of the person and cannot be incited by the way someone dresses, behaves or moves. Modestly dressed women are raped, abused, stalked and harassed as much as scantily clad females.
People rather blame it on her dressing or her actions because then they can delude themselves if they make right choices, they will be excused from patriarchal harm, they aren't complicit in self deputising to police women out of their own volition, suddenly choice is out the window when financial, psychological or social currency overrides justice.
The existence of the female body is at once meant to be consumed by primarily the male gaze then policed by their dutiful handmaidens, desperate to earn their favour. They perform solidarity by loudly pledging alliance to women's rights or feminists then hypocritically victim blame with the other hand, they slap and then they soothe, keeping themselves busy inside a pointless cycle and believe they have done some imaginary good, proven their moral superiority. They merely used survivors for self serving feel good vibes, show us how invaluable we're and how weak they're, not the kind that will ever really protect us, making their grandstanding even more fake and their promises all the more impossible.
They don't understand how every part of a victim's self changes, her mind, her body and her spirit is torn apart. Even simple things like seeing make up as a kind of self care ritual can take a turn for the worse, she can start hating the idea of make up, even if she sees it as art and not solely for beauty. The moment she realised make up couldn't cover bruises on her face, this mask becomes useless, she is still humiliated when people can see physical evidence of her abuse.
Why don't you JUST leave, they shout in exesperated glee, glee because it wasn't them, they're the intelligent, strong, competent ones who made the right choices in life.
The ones who supposedly love themselves above survivors, the ones who're confident, with high esteem, the high achievers.
Exasperation not because they think her life matters, she knows no one came to save her then and no one came since, because they want to silence her, erase evidence of the possible fate of a woman, until they become 1 of the 3 and realise oh it really wasn't her, then they start to understand their intelligence, strength (imaginary or real) isn't the problem.
The irony is they're at the highest risk because they don't think it can't be them and she is left with the foresight they do not possess, sadden at their over confidence and laughing at their ignorance, they can't see good advice over their inflated egos, blocking everything they need to, because they're the real weak ones. They just met their low standards of intelligence and strength, these people can be confident and have high esteem too, they just don't have much achievements and aren't ambitious.
She has to harden her heart and try not to take it personally, after all, they also didn't take it personally enough to rescue her, caring but not caring enough is just disappointment, she knows better than to pin her hopes on them.
Solidarity, where is it?
On average it takes 7 times to leave, they try and they try, "stay for the kids", "what about my finances?", "what about the family's reputation?", "
maybe he will change", "I want to help him", so many considerations, all used to keep her trapped with her back against the wall at every turn and they make it about a lack of SELF DETERMINATION.
Like as if they didn't fail to exhibit self determination by not standing by long enough for her to realise she really needs to go. They're conveniently self determined to ignore it as a problem until it becomes their personal one.
No one said self determination can't be misused. They mean themselves over yourself but they expect you to believe in solidarity.
We're like cows, livestock to be bought and sold, objects to be use and property to be policed, fenced in and kept hidden from view.
We produce milk for our masters and they still want to negotiate the bride price of the cow.
But have high self esteem, be confident, be positive, why don't you smile? LOL, what a circus, full of clowns and circus masters who can't see how a caged lion will get sick and tired one day, when she's pushed to a corner and have nothing left to lose, then they're in trouble.
Oh no, that's not how a good woman thinks, we're suppose to lay down and wait for rescue, tolerate being called useless good for nothings, exploited with slave wages when we work and then be thankful to be saved by the benevolence of our masters, settle for crumbs and sometimes not even that, but we're still witch suspects, our altruism doubted at every turn, called bitches when we finally get tried of being everyone else's servant.
Healing is a process, rewriting your book takes time, it's OK to move at your own pace and not compare to someone else.
Resilient competent women are often mistaken for clueless airheads, who smile because they don't know better. But be positive, be strong. LOL. Handmadiens don't listen to women, no matter how brilliant. But autonomy amirite? Independence amirite? So free to not wear masks, prefer to die and drag others down with them.
Freedom! Liberation! Make lousy choices without being called out! Be super irresponsible but feminist, smart, not privileged and mediocre!
Seek no approval, prioritise yourself, self care before other care, just this alone will open you up to massive amounts of judgement, you selfish greedy bitch! LOL.
God forbid if you take a break, you must toll away 24/7 but in a way everyone else wants, shove your own needs aside, put your life on hold and they call it feminism, I say pay me like a white man or shut the fuck up.
Some days everything goes wrong and you want a redo.
I am worthy, I am loveable, I am kind, I am good.
Even if the whole world loathes me, I know I am all these.