Lena Dunham has done some fucked up things in the past, but now I am thoroughly soured by her. It is one thing to be so mad pro-choice you say something dumb like how you wish you had an abortion. But when you side with a man accused of raping a woman (technically only 17 at the time of the assault) because he’s your friend, I draw the line.
There is a wave of women coming out against the men who have either sexually harassed, accosted, or assaulted them. The MeToo movement has risen enough to become Time’s Person of the Year. Which when Time came out with the title in 1927, it was Man of the Year. Prior to 1999, four women were granted the title as individuals: three as “Woman of the Year”—Wallis Simpson (1936), Queen Elizabeth II (1952), and Corazon Aquino (1986)–and one as half of the “Man and Wife of the Year”, Soong Mei-ling (1937). That gives a snippet of why now it is so important women are speaking out.
The first time a man touched me without consent was when I was in middle school. I was at a party where I shouldn’t have been. I was drinking and smoking pot as I shouldn’t have been. Everyone had passed out and he saw his opportunity. The only thing that saved me that night from him penetrating me was my tampon string. When I told the details I could remember to my best friend, next her sister, then my mom, then my therapist. No one believed me. He was absolutely right, no one believed me. I can still remember him telling me it is all a dream as we was violating my body.
In my high school class as students were slowly making their way in, I was sitting in my desk when I caught the attention of a boy I had known when I lived in a previous neighborhood. He was a goof and liked acting out. He came over to me, grabbed my shoulder and put his shirt over my head mimicking the motion of getting oral sex. I fought him off me and the teacher who saw the event sent us to the dean’s office. The dean said the offense warranted expulsion and that the boy would be sent to an alternative school. The dean looked directly at me with the boy sitting directly next to me and asked me if I thought the boy should be expelled. I shook my head and he dismissed us back to class.
The man at the party I shouldn’t have been at eventually attempted to rape my best friend. Only then did she believe me. She called me and I listened to her and not once did I ever say I told you so.
I don’t believe the boy in class ever went on to be a predator. I do believe he was intending it as a joke not realizing the actual deed would be reprimanded so harshly by teacher and what the dean threatened. They never did make a mark on his record for it, nor did they even give him a detention or suspension. When it comes to reporting harassment, it’s with the scope of protecting the perpetrator or assailant. It is in my whole-hearted belief that this is a man’s world and we women are still just living in it.