If, during a moment when rape victims are speaking out in force to detail the awful treatment they endure at the hands of school administrators, police and the criminal justice system, you’re using your time, energy and published words to argue that America’s rape problem is overblown … perhaps a little Twitter heat should be the last thing you’re worried about. Being on the wrong side of history should be the first.
And if, after hearing story after story of women abused by attackers and then the system meant to protect them, you spend your time opining that poor men have to go through the trouble of getting an explicit “yes” from their partners before engaging in sexual acts, maybe you need to spend less time writing and more time on a therapist’s couch. After all, who besides a rapist thinks that getting an enthusiastic “yes” to sex is an unreasonable standard?
I am a feminist. I’ve been female for a long time now. I’d be stupid not to be on my own side.
- Oh my god, I hate her.
- Ah, me too.
- You have no idea who I’m talking about.
- Solidarity sister.
'Somebody’s there!' cried the voice unalarmed. 'Who are you?—Manfred, St. Christopher, or Queen Victoria?'
'I’m Don Juan!' Amory shouted on impulse, raising his voice above the noise of the rain and the wind.
A delighted shriek came from the haystack.
'How do I get up?' he cried from the foot of the haystack, whither he had arrived, dripping wet. A head appeared over the edge—it was so dark that Amory could just make out a patch of damp hair and two eyes that gleamed like a cat’s.
'Run back!' came the voice, 'and jump and I’ll catch your hand—no, not there—on the other side.'
He followed directions and as he sprawled up the side, knee-deep in hay, a small, white hand reached out, gripped his, and helped him onto the top.
'Here you are, Juan,' cried she of the damp hair. 'Do you mind if I drop the Don?'
Beauty privilege is very real. None of us are imagining it, and if we aren’t born genetic lottery winners, our only option is to compensate with style, grace, and charm. Of course, none of that shit comes cheap. That’s kind of the whole point. It’s all meant to be aspirational and exclusionary. We’re supposed to feel depressed by our skin, agitated by our bodies, and anxious about our invisibility. That’s the insidious subtlety of social control.
The worst part is that we know in our rational minds that it’s all bullshit, and yet we’re still plagued with self-loathing when we can’t live up to unattainable beauty standards. No matter how much self-acceptance we achieve, we can still look in the mirror and instantly catalog all the things about ourselves that we don’t think measure up. It’s maddening. It makes us feel like hypocrites even though it’s not our hypocrisy.