NO! The Rape Documentary and #LoveWITHAccountability creator Aishah Shahidah Simmons is the Spotlight Feature in Hematopoeisis Press, Issue 4 - Perricardium.Read More
The Westwood Baptist Church in Richmond, VA where Rev. Michael Lomax is the pastor will host a FREE all day conference on sexual violence, accountability and healing on Saturday, April 21, 2018. There will be a panel, a screening of NO! The Rape Documentary, and a keynote by #BlackFeminist sister/scholar/comrade/friend, co-founder of The Feminist Wire, and the first lady of Westwood Baptist Church, Dr. Tamura Lomax.
SPREAD THE WORD. This FREE intergenerational gathering is open to all. You can register here.
Aishah Shahidah Simmons weighs in on Trump and violence against women in the New York Times:
The offensive video of Donald Trump talking with Billy Bush and other men is the latest reminder that the work being done to end violence against women is never-ending. These vulgar and egregious conversations about women happen regularly throughout this country: What’s unique is that Trump and Bush were caught on tape.
But despite the overwhelmingly negative response, and the immense progress women have made over the past 40 years, the threat of violence against women is still a very serious problem in this country.
While many have jumped to condemn Trump, others have sought to dismiss his comments as mere "locker room talk" or, even more disturbingly, just "what happens when alpha personalities are in the same presence." These excuses illustrate how this violence is perpetuated when powerful men are not held accountable for it.
When high-profile white men assert what they see as their right to do what they want to women, it sanctions all men to do the same. This type of behavior becomes normal, excused as a “boys will be boys” phenomenon. It transcends race and culture because it’s about dominance over women, but more often than not, it is the most marginalized women who suffer the most. Men may not be able to degrade a famous actress to her face, but if they feel free to speak in such vulgar terms about her in private, imagine what they might feel they could say or do to another woman without the same visibility. Or, more broadly, imagine if Trump's defense of "locker room" language is accepted by judges or those who end up on the jury of a sexual assault case.
This "locker room" talk has trickle-down consequences.
Not only do attempts to brush off Trump's comments minimize the everyday experiences of survivors of sexual harassment and sexual assault, but it buries our fight under an extremely dangerous excuse — that this is just how the powerful talk.
Wealth, privilege and power are never excuses for any type of violence, against women or otherwise.
'[…]After over a decade of working to build transformative community responses to child sexual abuse, I know that small victories can have the greatest impact and continue to be our markers of progress. They are small guideposts that we can use to get through the worst of the storm. A compass for where we want to go next.[…]’
Mia is a Just Beginnings Collaborative Fellow. Read more here.
For many Black/People of Color, the harm doers are ALSO in our families of origin and our chosen communities. They, too, have been harmed and are often unable or unwilling to examine the ways that they harm. However if this excruciatingly painful and relentless work doesn't happen, our communities will never be liberated.