Thursday, May 5, 2016

Maybe.... We Need A Different View

I never expected this picture to be a source of conflict, yet that's exactly what it became on a friend's Facebook page earlier this week.

People were decrying her for posting it saying "This seems like a very bad way to portray all men" and  "it doesn't make sense" and just in general critizing with the impression that it was wrong.

To me it says... blame the criminal, not the victim. To me it is a reminder that we have to teach people to treat others honourably. Maybe the satire of this meme is unneccesary, maybe it will have absolutely zero effect on absolutely everybody who reads it, but....

Just Maybe.

It will reach one person. It will reach that one boy who grew up in an abusive home, who was never shown or told that you needed to treat other people with respect, who was shown that women were there for him to use and abuse.

Maybe I'm giving too much strength to a meme. Maybe others aren't giving it enough.

There are people who are hurting in this world. There are people who simply haven't been taught the proper way to interact, to have relationships.

There are boys and men who believe women are theirs for the taking. There are boys and men who don't know any better because all they've ever seen is women being used instead of being loved. There are boys out there who have been inducted into gangs and rape because that's what is expected of them. They may even not realize the depths of how wrong it is.

Yep. You can argue with that statement, but think about it carefully. If all you ever see is hatred, violence and abuse; if your largest people of influence think that is okay and promote it, will you truly see the danger and risk of it?

Maybe it will speak to that one girl who has been sexually victimized from as early as she can remember. Maybe it will tell her that it's not her fault. That her existence does not mean she has to remain a victim because the crime, the shame, is not hers. Maybe it will give her the strength to start believing that she has value.

Maybe that girl thought she could only be loved if someone was using her sexually. Maybe she doesn't even realize yet that she's been raped because ... it's only ever been taken from her.

Maybe, this just brings home to one person that rape is not the victims fault. Maybe, the next time you sit on a jury this meme will ring in your memory and you will look to the suspect, not the victim to explain why they are sitting in the courtroom. Maybe, just maybe it might start to change societal views, police attitudes, justice....

Maybe.... if we started looking at it differently, we'd start seeing a different result.

Let's be honest. It's a meme. It's using satire and humour to address a very serious issue. It's not a perfect representation, but isn't it time someone said it?!

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