First and foremost, it is quite a saddening and somber fact that violence against women happens everyday, at an alarming rate. I was raised completely sheltered from this reality. I rarely saw it first hand and still to this day it seldomly occurs before me. Yet I know it is very real. My limited knowledge and experience on the problem narrows my scope on what common factors are linked to this. All I can say is that the lessons I learned from my mother engraved in my morals to be “good” to women.
The example my father and mother set for me, whether I like them or not, are the cornerstones of my character. I do not know or understand what mental/emotional process a male would go through to act violently towards a woman who is more often smaller, and physically weaker. It is as if these men prey on the weak, which to me is a trait of a weaker, sick individual, who is in turn a dishonorable coward who must be punished to a dangerous extent. I don’t believe social class has anything to do with it, though culture might, because of the submissive, or slave-like roles women play in some cultures maybe?
I recall talking to a Ugandan militant who worked with me and a small team of Marines in Iraq. I vividly remember me and him talking about how they handle rapists and molestation in his home country; he said to me when they caught a man raping a woman, either during or after the event, the man was burned alive in the street, everyone watched… including the police. The crime was taken so seriously no one intervened to stop this man’s punishment. When he told me that I was surprised and stoked at the same time.
Rape is a horrible, horrible thing and it has serious effects on women. I have heard stories from women my age of how they were sexually assaulted or raped; the mental effect on them is astonishing.
In America I feel it is what young males are exposed to that builds chronic mental distortions of women. A man’s individual perception is HIS own uniquely shaped reality and it may not fall into the status quo: everything that falls outside of the status quo is where problems lie. There are so many bad examples/role models, demonstrating negativity, violence, sex, drugs, and immoral behavior that is glorified in pop culture that lead to bad behavior i.e. violence.
I do not think that a man wakes up one morning and says, “Hey I feel like raping and beating a woman today.” It has to stem from a pattern of thought from a wrong perspective built up over time… from x and y. The only reasonable form of prevention in regards to rape and sexual violence has to be through education.
–DK is a Mexican American country boy. He grew up in a very small town in the foothills of California and attended elementary school with Feminist Activist. He started college after completing a stint in the Marine Corps and enjoys surfing every chance he gets. He claims he’s “not a feminist but” he has always felt women are equal.