Thursday, August 14, 2014

How Far We Haven't Come

The internet’s response to what happened to Christy Mack has bothered me on so many levels.  It fills me with horror that someone would beat someone so viciously.  That if she hadn’t gotten away when she did, he could have killed her.  

It frightens me that the majority of the responses have been that she deserved it.  That she asked for it.  Along the lines of “What did she expect?”

Unless the specific words “Please beat me and break my bones and turn me into someone unrecognizable” pass your lips to someone else, no one, NO ONE, asks for this.  

No one wants to have to face their bruises in the mirror.  To ache and wince when moving.  To hide behind long sleeves or sunglasses.  To make up flimsy excuses to doctors or friends or loved ones.  

And certainly this woman who happens to have a profession so many deems “unsavory” didn’t ask for it or deserve it either. 

Let me ask you this: If the pornography industry is so disgusting, so beneath them, then why does it generate millions of dollars in revenue every year?  If it’s the worst thing on earth, who’s watching it?  Have we compartmentalized this into believing that the bodies belonging to the genitalia on screen aren’t actually people?  Do we view them as being subhuman because of their profession? 

I can’t look at those pictures of her without wanting to cry.  I don’t give a good god damn what she does for a living.  No profession, no matter how lowly you might consider it, makes a person deserving of treatment of that nature.  

What we do to rape survivors in the age of the internet and its anonymity isn’t enough?  Now we’ll add in domestic violence.  We are an awful, shameful species if this is what we have come to as a people.  

Technology may have progressed but it’s left humanity far behind.   It’s opened the door for every ignorant and hateful person to have a voice and express that voice without thought of its impact.  It’s allowed humanity to regress into a dark mob carrying torches and pitchforks. 
It scares the hell out of me.  

How can you bring awareness to an issue that’s been going on for time out of mind when the overwhelming response is “She asked for it”, or to be called a whore, or worse?  

I feel compassion for what happened to Christy Mack.  I feel empathy for her.  I feel admiration for being brave enough to post her statement and her photos of the abuse knowing what sort of response she could anticipate from the masses – and she did it anyway.  I don’t care what her profession is.  Wouldn’t matter if she was a porn star or a particle physicist.  Because no one deserves to be beaten.  No one asks to have 18 bones in their face broken.  Men have been beating women – and women have been beating men – forever.  It shouldn’t be acceptable.   Victim shaming shouldn’t be a thing.  And it is.  And it breaks my goddamn heart. 

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