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Fuck Politeness

This is a revolution, not a public relations movement

I live not too far from my boyfriend. Sometimes he stays here. Sometimes I stay there. Mid week though, sometimes I’ll pop over for some quality time and either he’ll drive me home, or I’ll walk.

One night a few visits ago, I got wigged about the walk home. It was particularly late and I had one of those granny carts with me, with a squeaky wheel, and I wasn’t wearing my ‘stealthy shoes’…I couldn’t quite articulate why I’d been fine to walk home other nights, but not this one. But I managed the whole “I’m not feeling comfortable about the walk past the bush” explanation…which is true…but not all of the story, not that I even had *words* for what the story was…I just knew I didn’t wanna walk that night, and it wasn’t about tiredness/convenience.

Walking over there tonight (before it got dark) in a shortish dress I suddenly realised what was bothering me. In this dress suddenly men are tooting and honking and staring – not cos I look particularly hot, just cos “Chick. Bare legs!”, so I was pondering masculinity and the consequent strange attitudes to women – take a random sample of passers by and they’ll perve and honk at my 30+ legs which are blindingly white and show my love for food, but in another setting those same dudes will absolutely slag women my age for daring to show their thighs in public. So one minute my thighs are “Woohoo – sexy”, next minute their cause for nausea, all dependant on…what exactly? The mood of the guy? The company he’s in?

Anyway (bear with my rambling brain) I started to think of baring my thighs in summer as activism, that’s right ppl, check em out…they’re curvy, and pretty well shaped, but they’re also squidgy (which, let’s be honest, feels pretty nice) and white – they don’t look like Barbie legs, and I’m not gonna forgo a doughnut if I feel like one, spend hours at the gym then fake tan it up before I feel I have the *right* to bare legs in summer. It’s HOT in Australia in summer! So I figure, right…bare the thighs more often, the more often ppl see ‘real’ thighs, *perhaps* the more they’ll realise the ideals are…are, like totally fucking ridiculous…right? Maybe? *Sigh* Probably not. Whatevs.

Anyway, I also felt kinda naked in this short dress, exposed, like you know, it might be taken as an invite to attack me for me to walk..alone…in a dress which happens to be shortish…in summer…in Australia, where we like to point the finger at everyone else for having bad attitudes towards women, conveniently ignoring our own damning stats. I hated that it crossed my mind…but I dunno. I’ve read the rape cases…and *BAM* – just like that it hit me. Part of the reason I don’t wanna walk home at night in the dark after visiting my boyfriend? Semen. It will still be on my body, and say if I get raped (a possibility always on my mind when I walk alone at night) and the medical examination finds my boyfriend’s semen as well as that of whoever attacked me…that gets raised in court. I’ve read this shit. The implication seems to be, well, slut, if you had sex once tonight, then walked around on your own, you’ve only got yourself to blame, cos a/ if you did it once you’re clearly *up for it, no questions asked* (they never do seem to distinguish between sex and rape) and/or b/well, men are like rabid dogs, and they’ll smell *sex* on you and then, well, we can’t expect them to be responsible for their behaviour or act like decent human beings, can we?

Anyone who thinks I’m being a psycho bitch feminist? I defy you – read the effing rape cases and then get back to me. Read the sentencing of Bilal Skaaf (the guy accused of ‘masterminding’ a series of organised gang rapes across Sydney) if you please, where in distinguishing the actions of these men who organised by mobile phones, the judge was at pains to distinguish it from other (less repugnant goes the implication) gang rape cases where drunken men *siezed an opportunity that presented itself*. You! Women? That’s what you are to the legal system…an opportunity to rape. If you’re there and they ‘seize the opportunity’…well…what can we say? Unlucky girls…you presented the ‘opportunity’.

So, y’ gets to me. I walk home from my boyfriend’s house at night – which is actually a damned pleasant walk in summer – and the legal system that’s meant to protect me as well, since, you know, it *claims* to be all neutral and protect everyone equally, has cast me, by their own comments in rape cases as an opportunity to rape, who deserves it for being a slut in a short dress who had sex once already that day.

More on this (more well thought out, I promise) sometime soon. Tonight I’m going to bed.

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