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Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Man Am I Plastered...As a Meme!!

So, there's this really cool thing I did for a group called UniteWomen.org. I sent in my picture to them, along with a quote they could use, about how I stood with Jane Doe of Steubenville, Ohio. Seeing as I wrote an article about the case from the standpoint of rape culture, and how much it's pissing me off, I was happy to contribute to their latest ad campaign. Well, today the director of the Ohio chapter tagged me when she posted the result. Then the director of the overseas site also tagged me with the same meme, so take a look. I'm so thrilled to be part of this!

Rain Stickland - Unite Against Rape Campaign for UniteWomen.org
I'm very proud to be a part of this campaign, I have to say. There have been many celebrities contributing to this campaign. (No, I don't consider myself a celebrity by any means - just someone who wants to help out.) Margaret Cho, Courtney Love, Sandra Fluke, Drew Reyes, Roseanne Barr, Jane Pratt, and Erin Scott, to name a few, have all contributed their own memes to the campaign. Now I have joined their number.

Additional great news is that I'm now listed as a contributor to the +UniteWomen.org website, and they're going to be linking my blog as well. I signed up on the website for Feministing, as well, to start contributing there, although I'm not quite sure how it works just yet. It looks like a massive blogging site for feminists such as myself, so I might just carry over my blog postings that relate to feminism. Considering how much I write on that particular subject, I'm sure I'll be considered a regular contributor.

All yammering about my writing aside, the issues that I write about are often extremely important, which is why I chose to be a part of this ad campaign for the survivor of Steubenville. This girl went through so much. She was drugged, raped, filmed and photographed, she was dragged (unconscious) from party to party, and then, when she had the courage to come forward and testify against the animals who did all this to her, she was subjected to public humiliation, rapist sympathizers in the media, had her name aired for the 'viewing pleasure' of millions, and finally she ended up receiving death threats. What should be the most surprising aspect of this, yet somehow it isn't, is that the rapist sympathizers and persons uttering the death threats are female.

CNN reporters couldn't get over the fact that such 'promising futures' were over for these rapists. Fellow students were angry because the football players they idolized would no longer be able to play. Are you kidding me?! I mean, I wrote the article on it that I linked above, and got such a vicious headache from writing it that it took several days to get rid of it. These things upset me on an almost visceral level. There's a primal protectiveness in my nature that gets simply ferocious at the thought of everything that was done to this child. Yes, she is a child! A high school student who will now have to live with this horror, over and over, for the rest of her life. Unless you've been a victim of rape, you can't possibly understand what it does to you.

There will soon come a day when I actually write, publicly, about what happened to me. I haven't thus far simply because it will take a fair bit out of me. I've dealt with it, inasmuch as is possible, and I live with it quite well. I am no longer angry about my own experiences, as I've reached a point in my life where I would actually chose to go through it all again just so that I could end up exactly the same person I am today. I wouldn't be feeling too good about it as it happens, but I would make that choice.

Most people would be asking why I would ever want to go through it again, and the answer is quite simple. The moment someone touched me in a way that violated me, the person I should have been died. I don't have a clue who that person was now. Maybe if I'd been older, and had had the chance to get to know myself, I might not feel this way. I might feel the loss of my other self more keenly. I was only about six or seven years old when it started for me, though, so I don't remember who I was before then, and my real personality had yet to develop.

If I were able to do so, and went back to change my past, I would completely lose the person I am now - the person I know, understand, love and respect. That person would never have existed, and I would be somebody else I've never met before. I can't bring myself to wish for that, as sad as it might be to think that that person had to die.

On the other hand, if I were Jane Doe, I'd be wishing fervently for a return of my real self. She is now going to have to deal with the loss of that person, which is something they don't explain to survivors very well. It always seems to get missed in all the therapy. What they should be telling her, and maybe what I should have said in my meme, is, "Your old self has died, and you will have to accept the loss of that person as though your best friend has just died. You are now stuck with a new person inside of you. An angry, bitter, traumatized person who will try very hard to make you self-destruct, and you will have to fight against that person for the rest of your life."