CONSEQUENCE: BEYOND RESISTING RAPE
Consequence follows the adventures of Loolwa Khazzoom, as she pushes the envelopes in responding to daily doses of sexual harassment. Whether grabbing the balls of a soldier, hitting a security guard in the face, or taking on the whole damn system, her boldness and humor will bring you on a breathtaking roller-coaster ride over the edges of socialization.
Diane DiMassa: Author & illustrator of Hothead Paisan: Homicidal Lesbian Terrorist
This book bashes back! Look out for Loolwa!
Lori Dobeus: Founder, Women's Safety Project
Consequence is a detailed examination of the connection between sexism and violence against women. Loolwa Khazzoom thinks and acts outside the strictures of so-called "acceptable" female behavior...with thoroughly interesting results!
Ophira Edut: Editor, Body Outlaws
Loolwa Khazzoom's Consequence takes a daring look at young women, violence, and power. In an age of backlash and increasing passivity, Khazzoom talks about a controversial "girl power," unveiling the stigma against women who fight violence with violence. Consequence exposes the restrictions that everyday violence imposes upon young women, and challenges women (and men) to explore new ways of respecting and sharing each other's space. Through her own experiences, Khazzoom pushes readers past the possibility of women responding physically to violence. She shares the solitary (and often frightening) "outlaw" experience of a woman who makes her own rules in the name of freedom.
Michael Kimmel: Author, Against the Tide: Pro-Feminist Men in the U.S., 1776-1990
To the daily torrent of indignities and assaults, both trivial and traumatic, Loolwa Khazzoom dares to take the outrageous step of fighting back, challenging, and even hitting her harassers. Some will say that she "goes too far," others will cheer her courage, and still others will stare incredulously that a woman has the nerve to use men's weapons against them. But few, if any, will read passively.
Rivka Solomon: Editor,That Takes Ovaries
As always, Loolwa Khazzoom is on the cutting edge, writing real and raw, about the stuff that makes up our female lives.
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Reviews of Consequence
"What is street harassment? How far does attention from strangers, specifically male-to-female, have to go to be considered harassment? I suppose it’s fair to say that uninvited attention ranges from mild to extreme and women have different opinions on how far it has to go to be considered harassment. After all, the world places so much importance on female beauty that we could be led to take virtually any wanted or unwanted sexual attention barring direct physical aggression as good attention. While harassment has been a big focus of my own life for the past year and I have much to say that will not fit into this small space, ultimately street harassment has to be examined in light of the myriads of assaults on women’s human rights that occur around the globe daily, and Khazzoom herself says something along these lines in her book." (full review)
Bitch: Feminist Response to Pop Culture
"bracing and courageous call to fists"
"Hey girls! Tired of harassment? Wish you didn't take that shit? Ever feel like punching out one of those guys?" reads the advertisement for Loolwa Khazzoom's new book, Consequence: Beyond Resisting Rape. It's a challenge and an invitation to re-examine our attitudes about sexual assault, and to find creative solutions in battling harassment.
More than likely, you have already read something written by Loolwa in the pages of Clamor. If you are like me, you were inspired and challenged by her don't-take-shit stance to harassment and sexual assault. Consequence, then, is no letdown. The pages are filled with stories recounting day-to-day encounters with sexual assault, and more importantly, her calculations on how to deal with this harassment.
A major theme in Consequence is freedom, how we define freedom and how it is defined for us, and also what it means when we reclaim our lives as free individuals. Loolwa speaks to the daily experience of being a woman in a patriarchal society that is horrifyingly accepting of violence against women. She describes numerous situations in which she attempts to simply take up space, to do whatever the hell she wants to do, but constantly comes up against men infringing on her will, whether verbally or physically.
Beyond Resisting Rape, though, suggests something more than self-defense. Loolwa asks what our tactics are for dealing with (or not dealing with) harassment. Avoidance, silence, and politeness are all too common strategies that women choose when confronted by the odd stare, grope, or nasty comment. What she suggests, and actively demonstrates in her experience, is a strong reclamation of our space, our sense of peace, our bodies. Loolwa fights back, not just with words but with fists. She encourages women to find whatever tactics they are comfortable with, whether that is hitting, running, yelling, laughing, singing, talking, or dancing. By "living in the threshold of possibility," we have at our disposal a variety of methods with which to address harassment.
The act of re-examining what our options are for dealing with those who assault us is an acknowledgment that the daily shit that happens to us, as women, is unacceptable. Being leered at, being afraid to walk alone at night, being talked over and talked down to, having to explain to strange men why being whistled at is not a compliment, being physically violated, etc., is simply the daily experience of a woman.
And Loolwa says it's high time we start taking matters into our own hands. Instead of "legal self-defense" which calls for a certain amount of violence to already have been achieved, why shouldn't we rely on our own judgment and intuition? We need to set our own limitations on what is acceptable, when it's time to fight back and what tactics we will use to defend ourselves.
"Let's do something that has impact, consequence; something that will deter assault, something that will turn the assaultive energy around - in the head of the moment - and give us power instead of taking it from us...Assault against women happens every day, every hour, every minute, every second, multiple times a day in every woman's life, in many different forms. None of this assault should be happening, period. And I think it is time to stop it, whatever it takes."
Loolwa kicks a lot of ass, both on paper and for real. It gives me courage to know not only that there are women out there actively and creatively fighting back against assault, but also that I have the option of doing the same.
Sarah Stippich, for Clamor
Barbara Mor: Author, The Great Cosmic Goddess
Consequence is a 21st century Grrrl Scout Handbook!
Jill Nagle: Author, Whores and Other Feminists
After getting rejected from a number of publishers, one who described the book as "too controversial," author, educator and performer Loolwa Khazzoom decided to publish Consequence herself. This short, powerful book follows the author from place to place as men leer, follow, touch, invade, threaten, assault, insult, and rape. Most days, in most corners of the world, women get so treated, with queer women statistically experiencing more violations than non-queer women. Few if any legal measures exist that support women defending themselves against these most pervasive "minor" forms of violence and assault, and women themselves often do not retaliate in their own defense. Hence, the harassment continues unchecked, and male dominance over women prevails.
Khazzoom calls for the laws permitting such assaults to change, and in the meanwhile, to empower women to consider physical retaliation, i.e., hitting, as a possible response. If women provide a palpable, injurious consequence for harmful, oppressive behavior, Khazzoom argues, the basis for sexist oppression will wither away. The alternative is to continue living in the small spaces of fear and avoidance produced by a "realistic" (i.e., accepting without challenge) view of menÕs danger to women.
After two decades of experiencing and witnessing similar encounters, I found it hard to resist KhazzoomÕs response to being harassed by a group of men. She singled one out, told him to leave her alone, and he mocked her cruelly. Rather than flee, ignore or crumple, she recounts, "I will never forget the strength, rootedness, and pure, radiant glee that filled me, as I witnessed the play-by-play follow-through of choosing to raise my hand and give that fucker what he deserved." Now, I wonder if I have been, as Loolwa suggests, shortchanging myself by ruling out hitting as a viable option.
Some of her claims are too universal: "women everywhere" are not oppressed or endangered in exactly the same ways. I would also like to have seen more autobiographical writing about how Loolwa came to gather the chutzpah to actually throw those punches. But these are small quibbles compared to the books gargantuan, and long overdue contribution.
It is no small thing to suggest we stand up and literally, physically STOP harassers from continuing their quest to keep us in our place. Loolwa reminds us that we matter, we count, every single one of us, and the ability to fight violence against women is in our hands.
Off Our Backs
About two months ago a group of girlfriends and I went to a bar for some drinks. This bar is conveniently located directly above the off our backs office and we are familiar with the owner, so it is a place we are comfortable to hang out at. This one particular night, however, our comfort at a familiar place was compromised due to a group of men who insisted on forcing themselves into our space.
At began when one of the guys, the drunkest, would attempt to sit in one of the stools at our table every time one of us got up to use the restroom. Each time we asked him to leave. After about the fourth incident we began to get aggravated and told him that we did not appreciate the rude intrusion.
Apparently this defense of our space was as seen cute by the men and it encouraged his other friends to join in. With his friends behind him, the drunk asshole began to get bolder and started talking at us‹at our backs actually. His first comment was to my friend‹he said he liked her tattoo. The next comment was to me: "Those are really nice jeans‹and you have a nice tattoo too." We ignored him, hoping he would go away but ignoring him only seemed to engage him more. He proceeded to ask my friend what her tattoo meant as he touched her arm. This infuriated me, so I told him it meant, "Don't touch me" in Japanese. His reaction was to say, "What is your problem?" He had asked, so I told him‹I simply said, "my friends and I are attempting to have a conversation that is continually being interrupted by your rude behavior." He had no comeback so he went to whine to his friends.
The result was that another drunk guy in the group began to harass me for being "hostile." I couldn¹t believe I was the one accused of being hostile to a drunken asshole when he was the one who insisted on rudely interrupting our conversation and placing his hands on my friend. If anything, I was being extremely polite given the harassment my friends and I were undergoing.
I followed this attack by asking the asshole to define "hostile" for me. He seemed perplexed (no surprise there). I then asked if he had a mother or sisters -and he confessed that he had a mother and three sisters. I then asked what he would do if he witnessed the same situation happening to one of his sisters and his response was-"I would probably hit the guy." My point exactly.
Perhaps it was the strength of off our backs beneath me, but this was the first situation of harassment that I decided to handle in a way that was empowering for me. I didn't back away and I didn't get "hostile." But given the final response I kind of wish that I did get "hostile" and hit him. The final insult was that he tried to flirt with me, telling me he really likes intelligent girls!
Such "hostile" situations happen to women on a daily basis. They often make women feel weak and vulnerable, keeping them as caged creatures in a so-called free world. It is this exact torment felt by all women that is addressed in Loolwa Khazzoom's book Consequence: Beyond Resisting Rape.
No matter what women do, it seems that men are always there making comments and even violently attacking them. In this short, yet extremely illuminating book, Khazzoom retells some of her own experiences of harassment by men. Most of the incidents take place on her vacation in Israel, but her experiences in no way are limited to that country alone.
Khazzoom describes situation after situation, during her trip in which men felt that they had the right to infringe upon her space simply because she was a woman. She discusses all of the frustrations that I and numerous women go through on a daily basis. Throughout the book Khazzoom struggles with ways to confront the men who harass her. Should she answer their rude and disgusting behavior with violence? Or would that just be sinking to their level? Or would she feel better by standing up for herself and showing men that there are consequences for their actions?
After much internal debate, Loolwa was finally pushed to the point in which she decided that violence was indeed the only way to handle the situation. She decided to finally hit a man who was harassing her. Interestingly, after she did it, her overwhelming feeling was ecstasy.
I must admit that I felt a good deal of ambivalence while reading the book. I kept finding myself thinking, ³Come on, you know if you are dancing in the streets that men are going to harass you." As I read on, I realized that it was precisely this kind of thinking that the author is attempting to eradicate. I, like most women, have been socialized to think that I must moderate my behavior or else I should expect, and even deserve, any harassment I receive.
Instead, Khazzoom asks: Why can't women walk around with the freedom that men do? Why can't women walk around at 1:00 am and not fear being mugged or raped? Why can't women dance in reverence and celebration of a beautiful moon without being harassed or called crazy? The answer is: we can¹t only to the extent we shy from challenging the patriarchal order. Sure we may put ourselves in danger if we decide to dance in the moonlight or walk the streets at night but as Khazzoom suggests, this is no more dangerous than the state of being a woman in our society. Given the fact that women are subject to countless acts of harassment and violence, Khazzoom asserts that taking risks for our freedom by acting in ways out of the script for women is no more dangerous than simply living. Khazzoom suggests that if we don't take risks and refuse to moderate our behavior we will never experience true freedom.
After reading this book and after doing some extensive thinking on the author's points I am not sure that there is ever a "right" way to handle situations of harassment. What makes it the right way is that the choice is empowering and affirming and is a conscience and autonomous choice on the part of the woman to stand up for herself, and therefore, for all women.
Vanessa McMullin for Off Our Backs
Rain and Thunder
Loolwa Khazzoom is the revolution in motion. Fed up with constant male harassment, sexual invasion and rape, Khazzoom has decided it's time for women to assault men who threatn us. And she's started doing it. The first half of *Consequence* chronicles her very successful physical attacks against men. On page 1, she's minding her own business buying herself lunch when two men--soldiers no less--invade her space with the usual come-ons and leers. Her attempts at verbal self-defense garner nothing but derisive laughter. And she's had it. She writes, "Women's verbal resistance is all part of the power trip: *You can say no, and I will continue anyhow. You have no power whatsoever, girly girl. You have no impact. I, to the contrary, clearly DO.* For this reason, the soldiers got even more delight out of our interaction when I verbally resisted their assault. How titillating; she'd so cute when she'd angry! And look--we can keep assaulting her, and nothing will happen to us (p.4)!
It is time for consequences. Khazzoom hits the first soldier in the penis. Soldier #2 thinks this is funny. In fact, it gives him an erection. So she slams him in the balls. And suddenly--what do you know?--it isn't so funny any more. She slaps soldier #1 around some more, and walks away, falafel in hand. It's *Thelma and Louise* come to life, except Khazzoom doesn't end up dead. In fact, nothing bad happens to her. Her point is simple and compelling: Saying something--anything--is perhaps better than not resisting at all. But let's go beyond the bare minimum already. Let's do something that has impact, consequence; something thtat will deter assault and give us power instead of taking it from us. Let's go beyond merely resisting what they are doing to us; let's start doing something to them (p. 4).
And she has a plan. In the second half of Consequence she addresses the philosophical and political considerations that any liberation movement must face regarding the use of violence. "If we are going to fight for our freedom, we must be willing to risk as much as our lives. Let us not forget, however, that if we are not going to fight for our freedom, we *also* must be willing to risk as much as our lives. What woman, after all, can be certain she will come home alive or even stay home alive? (p. 67) Burning questions, asked by a woman who has proved herself by fire.
She ends with an eight-step strategy for revolution. She suggests:
1. Discussion Groups to swap ideas for fighting back.
2. Visionary Art to create alternative models to inspires us
3. Research into how dangerous or successful different fight-back tactics are.
4. Creating Books to spread the word about revolutionary self-defense.
5. Training Camps to prepare women for battle.
6. Community Patrol Groups to protect women, with guns if necessary.
7. Underground Railroad to help women who have killed in self-defense get to safety.
8. Legal Networks including feminist lawyers to defend women who fight back.
9. Guerilla Groups to introduce the "terror factor" to men. These groups would beat up, castrate or kill perpetrators.
This is serious stuff, but Khazzoom is a serious woman. She writes, "For anyone who ever questioned why more Europeans did not hide Nazi prey, here is your chance to prove you would have done differently. We need to think seriously and act subversively, and we need to do it now."
Buy this book. Better yet, gather your friends together and have a good, long talk about the price of freedom and whether in the end we are willing to pay it.
Trina Robbins: Author & illustrator of The Great Women Super Heroes
Whether you agree with her proposed methods or not, Loolwa Khazzoom brings up an extremely important problem and one that has yet to be solved. No matter what country we're in, no matter what the race or color of the man, no matter how liberated we are, he still has the power to transform our day, anger, or worse, frighten us, and steal our energy. Loolwa Khazzoom's anger over this situation is palpable, her indignation is valid. Consequence is only one step in ending the war against women, but it's a big one.
San Francisco Weekly
Putting the "grr!" into grrl power: At the Ladyfest Bay Area press conference several weeks back, Loolwa Khazzoom explained the driving force behind her new book, Consequence: Beyond Resisting Rape, this way: "I go up to men who harass me - and hit them!" The crowd, composed mainly of women save for me and a couple of other guys, let out a huge cheer. I sank lower in my chair, hoping no one noticed me. "Harassment isn't about fighting," she continued. "If men wanted to fight, they'd hit other men. I'm not afraid when I hit them." Another cheer. Khazzoom went on to say that physical and verbal abuse contribute to a bland wardrobe, a lack of public singing, and horrible back problems from constant slouching. By this point, I was trying to slouch my way under my chair.
Despite my reaction, Khazzoom's attitude at the podium - confident, righteous, even a tad amused - was invigorating, and I found myself dying to know what happens when you go up to an Israeli soldier who's staring at your chest and sock him in the balls. It was then I realized Khazzoom's book is what Ladyfest is all about: education meets entertainment, with a visceral smack."
Dan Strachota for San Francisco Weekly
Street Harassment Project
CONSEQUENCE throws quite a punch - literally. It opens with a typical day of street harassment which results in Khazzoom's atypical response: a physical retaliation against the men who are visually and verbally assaulting her.
Whether or not one agrees with her proposed methods is up to the individual woman, and is almost irrelevant. The main drive of Khazzoom's point, however, is one that most women (and hopefully men) can agree with: There are no consequences for visual and verbal assault. (Khazzoom is very careful to make the distinction that, for the sake of this book and this particular argument, she is specifically and only referring to male-to-female heterosexual interactions.) Through various examples of her experiences, Khazzoom works through the many issues and complexities that arise by experimenting with methods of reacting and creating consequences for the men attempting to objectify her body and usurp her right to be left alone.
Since CONSEQUENCE does raise so many complex issues, it is bound to be controversial, both between men and women, and amongst women themselves. But the fact that Khazzoom has been brave enough to fiercely raise the question should prompt us to read this book, and, at the very least, consider how we live our lives and how we would like to live our lives. Are our actions (or non-actions) truly choices or are they forced upon us as we grow up in a patriarchal society and made to look like choices? If Khazzoom can convince them of nothing else, readers will not walk away without a new sense of awareness of their own choices, decisions, actions, and the reasons behind them.
Alexandra Devin, for The Street Harassment Project
I'm a pacifist but I can't stop feeling that men who sexually harass women deserve to get the shit kicked out of them. Harassment is horrible enough by itself but we have to take into account the fine line between verbal and physical abuse of women. It is hard to deny that we need to give men consequences for their actions. Everything conspires against our acknowledging our instincts but deep down we know when something is wrong and in particular we know when a situation with a man is getting dangerous. Unfortunately women are taught to never stand up for themselves and to never deny a man's wishes.
Loolwa does women's self defense classes and an important part of self defence is unlearning this stereotypical feminine passivity. However, Loolwa wants to take self defense further. This book puts across a new radical feminist thesis including: Men need to be less violent but women need to become more violent. All non-violent responses to sexual harassment only reinforce the harasser's position of power. In sexual harassment situations women should be aggressive and should be the first to act with physical violence
Consequence is Loolwa's account to a trip to Israel where she decided to test out her theory. She attacks Israeli soldiers, calls the police after boys in her hostel and pursues a rapist ex-lover. Loolwa is creative and fabulously powerful at dealing with the many men who try to give her trouble, and she is a terrific storyteller.
I have not made up my mind how I feel about this particular aggressive approach but this book has certainly influenced me. Quite soon after I finished reading Consequence I got a man verbally harassing me on the street. This never happens to me so I was not particularly seasoned at dealing with such things but nevertheless I stopped immediately, turned to face this guy and gave him a barrage of verbal back for about 3 minutes finishing with the words "and you should have respect for women". He was too shocked to speak after that and I felt pretty good. I think most women would feel pretty energized after reading this book. Have a look at Loolwa's website as well for more examples of her excellent writing.
Laura Wirtz for Synthesis
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Excerpts from Consequence
"Hello, sweetie, how are you?"
It started from the moment I stepped off the airport bus. Innocuous-sounding enough, but poison in its context. Wherever I went, whatever I did, there he would be, in my face. Asking me questions, making comments. I could not lie on the beach alone, walk down the street alone, sit at a cafe alone. It was constant, unceasing, without mercy. And without consequence.
"Don't start with me," I cautioned the first two. "Whopa!" they said, simultaneously impressed and entertained by my response. They left me alone after that; but usually I was not so lucky.
Cute young men, creepy old men, and everything in-between. They saw female flesh and went for it: "Hello, how are you today?"
"I want to be alone," I replied. He kept coming towards me, still talking. "I said I want to be alone." He did not stop. "Get the fuck away from me! I don't want to talk with you, and I don't want you near me!" He called me crazy. He started prancing about, yelling about what a nut I was. I moved to a different part of the beach. I moved.
"Hello, sweetie..." The jogger talked at me as he ran by. He ran past me again, talking again. He stopped and came over to me. I tried the ignoring technique. It didn't work. "Can't you just leave a woman alone? Can you deal with the concept that I don't want to talk with you? I am really sick of this! Get away from me!"
I had been thinking for a long time about the idea of hitting men who harassed me. The prospect was looking quite delicious at this point. I was close, very close...
"Hello, how are you?" I was lying on the wide low wall bracing the stairs down, listening to music on my walkman. The sun was shining on me, and I was feeling good. The idiot kept talking. I opened my eyes a slit to see who he was. His face was temptingly close to my foot. I considered the possibilities. The moron kept talking. "Hello?! Hellooooooo?!" he said, waving a hand back and forth, as if to wake me up. I jumped up and verbally devoured him. "I'm not answering you because I don't want to talk with you! Get the fuck out of here!" I was right in his face. He freaked out and retreated, whimpering. I wished I had kicked him. I was getting closer.
I arrived at the Jerusalem bus stop, to meet a friend for lunch. We chose a tasty falafel/shwarma restaurant halfway down the block. I placed my order and looked around, only to see one of the two young soldiers near me staring at my chest. I pretended it was not happening and tried distracting myself. I went over to look at the wall-to-wall pictures of Mizrahi rabbis. How often, after all, did I have the pleasure of seeing pictures of non-Ashkenazi rabbis, even in restaurants owned by Mizrahim (Middle Eastern/North African Jews)?
"Are you from England?" the soldier asked when I returned, still staring at my chest. "What are you looking at?" I challenged. "He's looking at your backpack," his friend answered. As I struggled to think of what to say next, the friend added, "He's staring at your breasts." "What are you, chauvinists?" I replied. Damn! Just didn't sound as good in Hebrew. No punch. "G-d forbid!" the friend said in mock offense. They giggled with delight, thoroughly amused by themselves.
"Why?" the friend continued, "is it a sin for a guy to look?" I practically jumped up his nostrils, shouting at him. "Yes, it's disgusting. Women are not slabs of meat for men to gape at." I had an idea. "How would you feel if women talked to you while staring at your dick?" I leaned over sideways in front of the guy, placing my head squarely in front of his penis. "Would you like it if women talked to you this way?" They both laughed, in a way that was partly disconcerted and partly amused. "Oh, you think it's funny?" I asked. There was no stopping me now. "What about if I hit it?"
I slammed my hand under his penis.
He jumped back, startled, confused. A woman started running around in circles, yelling, "What is it? What's happening? What's going on?" The man behind the counter calmly kept making my falafel. "See," I shouted at the soldier I just hit, "that's what it feels like when men stare at my chest. It's feels as violating as being hit." By this point, the guy who originally stared at my chest had run out of the store. I ran after him. I was on a roll. I found him outside, laughing uncontrollably, with his penis partially erect. "Oh, you think it's funny?" I asked. "What about if I hit yours?" I slammed my hand under his penis, grabbing his balls. He stopped laughing. I gave him the same speech.
I ran back in the store, yelling god knows what. "Hey," I said to the soldier inside, "You've got a cute butt!" Slam! I hit it. The soldier outside came back in. "In fact, you've got a cute butt too!" Slam! This guy was really upset by now, shifting back and forth, unsure what the hell to do. I was ready to take him on. He just stood there shifting on his feet, looking thoroughly distressed. I was having a blast.
The man behind the counter finished making my falafel. The woman still was running around frantically, trying to figure out what was going on. I paid for my falafel and thanked the man, beaming with delight. I walked out of the restaurant, laughing with my head thrown back. Deep, unbridled laughter from my belly. Chortles of freedom and power. It was one of the greatest moments of my life, and I was in absolute ecstasy.
These guys thought they could get away with speaking to and looking at me however they pleased, regardless of how I felt or what I said. Our interaction occurred in a social context where women usually do not confront verbal or visual assault - or physical assault, for that matter. We usually look away; try to ignore the men; pretend that what is happening is not actually happening; or become brain dead and giggly, deluding ourselves that the men actually are flattering us. At best, we tell the guys to leave us alone; or in more colorful terms, we tell them to fuck off.
There is barely any significant consequence to male assault of women. Men can and do assault women in various forms, with absolutely no physical, economic, political, or emotional ramifications whatsoever. In fact, men can gain more social power by assaulting women than by refraining from assault. By verbally assaulting women in the street, they can score points with their pals. By raping women in a fraternity, they can score points in the old boys' network. Considering the patriarchal social context where women are used as mere instruments for male existence, assaulting women is all part of the game plan; and there is far more incentive to assault than there is deterrent.
Given these factors, women's verbal resistance is all part of the power trip: You can say no, and I will continue anyhow. You have no power whatsoever, girly girl. You have no impact. I, to the contrary, clearly DO. For this reason, the soldiers got even more delight out of our interaction when I verbally resisted their assault. How titillating; she's so cute when she's angry! And look - we can keep assaulting her, and nothing will happen to us!
Or so they thought...
A number of women think it is big deal and strong enough to verbally resist male visual/verbal assault. I propose that to see it as such is to operate from a place where we perceive the men as being above us, stronger than us, like parent or some other "authority" figures; and to perceive ourselves as children, underneath them, so that it takes tremendous courage for us just to say anything at all. Saying something - anything - is perhaps better than not resisting at all. But let's go beyond the bare minimum already. Let's do something that has impact, consequence; something that will deter assault, something that will turn the assaultive energy around - in the heat of the moment - and give us power instead of taking it from us. Let's go beyond merely resisting what they are doing to us; let's start doing something to them...
Assault against women happens every day, every hour, every minute, every second, multiple times a day in every woman's life, in many different forms. None of this assault should be happening, period. And I think it is time to stop it, whatever it takes.
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