Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Unintended Consequences of #MeToo Viral Weaponization


medium  |  Human civilization is made of rape. For millennia, all over the world, women have been commodified and kept as property for the purpose of receiving male reproductive fluids and raising their progeny, regardless of our will. During this time we were kept at home while men invented religion, money, economics, war, government, hierarchy, class, culture, rules, laws and traditions, including the laws of the marital bed. Civilization has been arranged so that each man receives a woman to own, with whom he may have sex whenever he wishes, between building, fighting, destroying and conquering in accordance with the will of whatever ruler happened to be running the show at the time.



This is only just now beginning to change. A woman’s will for her own sexuality is only just now becoming culturally relevant, a blink of an eye from a historical perspective.

Spousal rape was not considered a crime in all 50 states until 1993, and there are still seven states where there is a marital exception to certain sex crimes. The full anatomy of the clitoris wasn’t recognized by western science until 1998. The G-spot was given its name in the 1980s after a male gynecologist, Ernst Gräfenberg, who spent time in the 1940s studying the stimulation of the urethra. Birth control pills kill sexual desire. A third of women reported pain in their last sexual experience. There is a little-known, virtually unresearched and untreatable condition called vulvodynia that causes such intense nerve pain that some women consider suicide, and it is more common than breast cancer.

Just sit with that. A third of women reported pain in their last sexual experience. They didn’t just not enjoy it, they gritted their teeth through it. Why? Because for a myriad of reasons, we don’t feel like we have a choice. That’s rape culture.

Given that interest in a woman’s will for her own sexuality is just barely beginning to enter social consciousness on a large scale, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that it is only just now in 2017 that sharing our experiences with rape culture is beginning to go mainstream.

Rape dynamics are woven into the fabric of society far more pervasively than anyone realizes, and by pulling this thread, the whole mad tapestry will necessarily unravel. This can only be a good thing.

Our species is at a crossroads. It’s become self-evident that we’re about to either collectively experience some kind of enormous transformation, or go the way of the dinosaur. Parallel to our unprecedented ability to network and share information and ideas with our fellow humans all around the globe is a death march toward either ecosystemic disaster or nuclear holocaust which so far shows no signs of slowing down, and one of these two factors will necessarily win out at some point in the near future. Thus far our attempts to shift trajectories have failed spectacularly. If something is going to save us, it’s going to come from way out of left field.

Women everywhere feel the significance of the #MeToo phenomenon. A lot of us are scared to say anything about it for fear of hurting the feelings of the men we love, fear of retribution, and fear of being eaten alive by the intimidating, debate-culture defenders of patriarchy, but there’s a widespread sense that this thing is much bigger than it seems. Some leaders of conventional feminist thought have been speculating about some kind of progressive political upheaval, but in my opinion this is infinitely more revolutionary than that. We are about to experience a plunge into completely unknown and uncharted territory.