So this one needs a bit of set-up.
This past week there was a news story about a local yoga “guru” being charged with sex with a minor. You can read the story (posted at bottom) for the details, but I’ll just add that in my early days here in Delray, I was seeking a good yoga class, read mixed reviews (some overwhelmingly enthusiastic) of this particular studio that’s close to our house, and tried one class, led by the subject of the article. It was awful. He put his hands on me without asking and generally had the demeanor of a sleazy used car salesman. I never went back.
In the wake of the news story, someone in our local Facebook group (I will refer to her as WW, for Woman Warrior) thought it reasonable and relevant to post a story of events that took place in Alabama (also posted below). In that case, which was different but not entirely dissimilar, the community and justice system rallied around and protected the perpetrator rather than the victim. WW feared the same might happen here.
And thus begins her conversation with the man I will refer to as DD, for… (actually I shouldn’t say what it’s for because, let’s just say, it’s not very nice).
[DD:] Let’s examine where the fault lies… I thought she was a kid? How does the town not burn down that bar or make a law where underage girls can’t be in bars or wander the streets alone for that matter? Sharia Law would have prevented this. No alcohol. No women wandering alone. As wrong as it sounds, you know it’s right.
[WW:] It’s stories like this that make it abundantly clear why victims hesitate to report and file charges against their assailants. How many times have we read that the victim becomes victimized by prosecutors, defense counsel, police, rape counselors, etc., abandoned by friends and relatives, disbelieved, shunned by townspeople, clergy, and those who are supposed to help them? It’s horrible and things need to change. Far too many women have been scarred for life by unwanted encounters and far too many end their lives because of the way society treats them.
[DD:] Ladies, is your right to drive alone and go into bars alone worth causing the number of women who get raped and killed by strangers because their animal instincts tell them to get alone with strange males? Be honest. If you only leave the house accompanied by a close male relative then you might be safe. If I was a woman, weaker of the species among men, I wouldn’t use all that freedom, it would be too risky and not worth the cost. It’s fun and exciting because it’s dangerous and risky. Or am I way off?
[WW:] Thank you so much for bringing this to my attention. I’m never going to drive alone or go into a bar by myself ever again. I’ve never realized how weak I was, being a female. I better just stay in the kitchen and the bedroom. I’ll be safe there.