Trigger warning: Abuse
As we are all aware, it is 2018. You’d think by now, “Oh, men and women are fairly equal, a lot of problems resulting from misogyny have vanished, we’re all good.” WRONG.
Women have come a long way, but this is not just about equality; it is about the dynamics of power in our international society. Women have risen into many positions of power, and can make executive decisions thanks to years of fighting and suffering. However, men continue to abuse women because of men having positions of power. Abuse includes everything of the sort: Sexual, verbal, physical, and all that comes with it.
What does it mean to be abused by someone who holds a powerful position? The situation is complicated. One who has been abused can simply come out and charge the assaulter, right? Not always. The whole situation is complex because even though the victim has the right to fight back, often they are intimidated by the person in power because of their power. Power can inspire fear, and power can bring injustice, as demonstarted throughout history.
People who abuse their power tend to dismiss topics deemed to be important to other people. They are too privileged in one way or another to realize the consequences of their demeaning actions. They fail to realize what the victim may suffer or feel — or they just don’t care.
Recently — and by recently, I mean the beginning of this month, multiple events unfortunately occurred, which prove my point exactly.
On August 30th, the Philippines’ president Rodrigo Duterte claimed, “As long as there are beautiful women, there will be rape.” Has he been taken away from office for indecency? No. He has not officially been held responsible for his words. Sound familiar? President Donald Trump said it was okay to grab women by the pussy. Duterte has also stated that rape is okay because “Nobody agrees to do it on the first try.” What does one expect from a person, that calls his daughter, his very own, a “drama queen,” when she reported to him that she has been sexually assaulted?
The very next day, on the other side of the globe in Detroit, Michigan, Ariana Grande was groped. Not only by a bishop, but at a funeral of another woman, Aretha Franklin, who is a feminist icon through her songs and life. Grande did not fight back, as she was placed on the spot in a holy place in front of a large sum of people. She is not obliged to fight back because she should have not been placed in this situation to start with. People tried blaming the situation on Ariana’s “short” dress; that reasoning is invalid. Groping is groping.
Bishop Charles H. Ellis III apologized, and, shockingly — please note my sarcasm — has not suffered the consequences.
Last, but maddingly not the least, in the last week of August, a fertility doctor surrendered his license to the state of Indiana because he inseminated women with his own sperm. Ronald Cline admitted to the felonies, but again, is not being held accountable because no law in Indiana criminalizes his actions. Dozens of people are confused and now think he may be the father, as he did not admit to many of the cases, and has left families shattered. Yet, he was given power to medically treat women.
Men get abused too, but women get abused and assaulted more frequently than men do. Why is this? Abuse should never even happen to anybody. When will we give this topic the importance it deserves and not just joke about it, and laugh everything off? Victims should not be blamed or ashamed that abuse happened to them. When will people with powerful positions be condemned for their actions? Just because someone is powerful does not mean that they are right.