Thursday, 3 July 2014

SWTO2014 Countdown: Acknowledging the good

The countdown to SlutWalk Toronto 2014 continues, with just t-minus 9 days and counting until we march.

I know that we often get caught up in the really horrible things that are going on. It's very hard not to, because these things so often affect our own personal safety and remind us of how far we have to go and how unsafe we often are.

There are some really positive, funny, and inspiring things going on around sexual violence, and for this post I'm going to focus on a few of those.

One thing I'm really enjoying about social media is how regular folks can band together and point out the stuff that's really not right and break it down into relatable terms. For example, turns out quite a lot of people have taken umbrage with Robin Thicke's predatory habits and aren't afraid to let him know it:



 
I laughed. I laughed a lot. But, I'm hoping that this can also be an eye-opener for both Robin and other folks that the stalking and emotional manipulation of his ex-wife are not kosher, nor is creating a veritable rape anthem.

There have been a lot of cases of regular folks on social media banding together to shine a light on issues. Despite the progress of getting these issues out there, many of them are hard to read and so I caution readers they may be triggering.

A few off the top of my head have been:
I purposely left off with Safety Tips for Ladies because it brings me joy.


Another thing that gives me hope is the hurdles that CAFE has been encountering.

I absolutely support efforts to address the issues that negatively affect men. What I don't support are organizations who use men's pain as a front for their misogyny. 

They may have temporarily pulled the wool over the eyes of the CRA, but their lies and obfuscation weren't enough for their "Equality Day" to go ahead or for them to participate in the Pride Parade. We see you, CAFE.

I'm also seeing more educational campaigns, articles, and discussions going on that can help really break down myths and misunderstandings about consent, sex, human anatomy, and sexual violence.

Some of my favourites that I'd like to pass on are:
The creation of more and more of these types of programs and campaigns tells me that we're gaining a better understanding of the ways our community attitudes towards sexual violence can have a huge impact on our safety. If we stand together and do not tolerate the attitudes that lead to victim-blaming and rape apologia, then we can cut down on the support systems that allow abusers to commit crimes under the complicity of those around them.

There are many more positive things going on in our culture that give me hope. If you know of some I've missed, please share them in the comments.

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