Saturday, January 5, 2013

"be the change you want to see in the world...."

“Everything I do is going to contain the message that men who are going to be comfortable with powerful women are going to be more powerful men.” ― Joss Whedon

     Right now if you are reading or watching the news it is almost impossible to ignore the issue of sexual assault. The headlines detail the sickeningly vicious gang rape and death of a young Indian woman in New Delhi and has uncovered the brutal sexual assault of an unconscious teen aged girl by a group of football players in Steubenville, Ohio. Rape is a violent act used to control another human being. Rape is about power. Although both men and women can be raped, women and children are more likely to be victims of sexual assault because they can be more easily physically subdued. There is no typical rapist. Studies show that men who commit sexual violence come from every economic, religious, ethnic, racial, age and social group. 85% of rapists are men known to their victims.

      Exactly what are some countries and societies teaching boys and young men about women? Certainly, I am not naive to the fact that violence and rape have been used to control people since the beginning of civilization. Have we, as a country, been teaching men to respect the rights of girls and women? Are men and yes, even some women in the United States respectful of the fact that a woman has the right to control her own body including the right to contraception, sexual activity, abortion, childbirth, and even marriage? All of these factors add up when contemplating women's rights issues. When men read news articles, watch movies or speak to actual rape survivors they must allow themselves to fully feel compassion. No matter how harsh, men must allow themselves to view rape victims as their mother, wife, sister or daughter. When we speak to young men about equality and respect for women we must remember they are observing their own fathers, friends, mentors as well as being influenced by the culture around them. When men speak of women they must show respect, love, encourage empowerment, choice and understand a womans right to her own mind and body. Acts of violence, murder, torture and rape are human rights abuses that occur all over the world.

 “Woman's degradation is in mans idea of his sexual rights. Our religion, laws, customs, are all founded on the belief that woman was made for man.” stated social activist Elizabeth Cady Stanton over one hundred years ago. We live in the United States of America, a country I love dearly but is not even on most "top ten lists" of best countries for women to live and thrive in the world. Are you surprised? I sure the hell am.


  1. Lisa, just want you to know that this is a very well-written and informative article. I really love the layout of your blog, the white-on-block, the quotes along ther sides with the photos, etc. You are obviously a very experienced blogger, and I'm learning a lot from you. I am a fellow freelanced member, too. I love your post about the animals and the theme about their abuse and neglect. The quotes are powerfully related. Keep up the wonderful work that you're doing. I'm a night owl,too. Take care. Feel your sensitivity.

  2. Thank you, Lesmotsique. I am so grateful for your support and encouragement. Passion for change can keep one awake for many many hours. Peace to you always.