What’s specious about talking about a few Black people who’ve been in power is that you have dismissed the very real systemic problems that exist, even for them. Remember our friend who was the AAG? How many times do I have to tell you that story? Essentially telling people of color to suck it up and stop complaining — just go organize is completely tone deaf and yes, out of touch with reality.

My impulse is to start quoting to you again the statistics of just what a huge percentage of the women in this country and the world have been and are routinely harmed and abused in one way or another but I’m tired and not sure it would even do any good. The World Health Organization (and the CDC) say that violence against women is an epidemic that has serious repercussions around the globe for the health and well-being of women everywhere. But we’re not supposed to talk about that because that’s acting like a victim. You’ve got to be fucking kidding me! Also entirely tone deaf and out of touch with real world problems and how they affect millions of real world people.

This doesn’t mean I don’t also care about men and the ways that they are also victims of crimes, sometimes at the hands of women, although overwhelmingly violent crime is perpetrated by men both against other men and against women. Did you pay any attention at all to what I said about how street harassment begins for girls at about age 10 and how pervasive that is? These are little children trying to walk home from school or church, trying to do the things that children do and be able to trust the adult men around them not to prey on them. That’s not remotely like walking the streets of Moscow at 3 am with a large sum of money.

Yes, the club is a controlled environment, and the only reason we can’t have that in a larger society is that there is not enough demand for the same kinds of standards. Harassment and sexual violence aren’t perpetrated by every man, but plenty of men stand by and let it happen without saying a word, without demanding that it stop. Until they do that, certain men will do as they please, because there are no consequences. That’s the entire point of all of this! It can’t change or get better until people like you stop defending the status quo and start being a part of co-creating something better. The solution to that is not to make women responsible for some men’s poor behavior; it’s to ask that more of society demand better behavior from those who out of line. Crime will always exist, and some precautions will always be necessary, but you do not run a constant threat-assessment sub-routine in the way that women do, and that people of color do — and that is also the point!

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Dispelling cultural myths with research-driven stories. My favorite word is “specious.” Not fragile like a flower; fragile like a bomb! Twitter @ElleBeau

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