Women deserve more respect.
At this point in our nation’s history, it unfortunately seems like this action may be easier said than done.
Women have remained loyal to their fellow men, but too often they’ve been rendered as second-class citizens in a nation they helped to fortify. From Betsy Ross to Angela Davis, women from different backgrounds have been responsible for crafting the framework of our society. A string of recent events in New Delhi, India and Steubenville, OH where a woman and a young girl were brutalized by the hands of degenerate boys and men has become another potential defining moment in modern history. The time has arrived for all men to galvanize around women and acknowledge how we’ve allowed this insane amount of degradation to exist without taking steps to properly address it.
During the founding of our nation, women were relegated to being homemakers and, in the case of Black women, slaves and property. As White men dominated the political and social structure, women could never be seen as their equals. Women played vital roles in securing independence from a colonial empire, the abolitionist movement, and numerous wars through the centuries. Blacks were given the right to vote almost sixty years before women.
It took the suffrage movement of the early 20th century for women to finally gain the right to vote, which remains as an undeniable blemish on the nation’s history. After receiving suffrage in 1920, women weren’t allowed to participate as soldiers in our military until 1948. Even today, women face discrimination in the workplace by not receiving equal compensation for the same position. Why this train of thought continues to reign supreme in our culture is beyond baffling.
Through the years, there have been countless examples where violence against women has been largely ignored by the people who can combat it. Many times women are viewed as the problem rather than the actual aggressor. Suspects are pushed to the background while the victims are placed front and center in the court of public opinion. The inner turmoil and unbearable pain a victim faces on a daily basis after being attacked is immeasurable. A significant number of these cases don’t go to trial or the suspect goes unscathed and it becomes a scourge on our fragmented judicial system.
The remaining unsolved cases involving the raping or abusing of a girl or woman makes one wonder if women will receive the justice and equality afforded to them under the highest law of our nation.
According to the Center for Disease and Control (CDC), “Nearly one in five women has been raped during their lifetime in the United States. One in four women has been a victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner in her lifetime. One in six women has experienced stalking victimization during her lifetime in which she felt very fearful or believed that she or someone close to her would be harmed or killed. Much of stalking victimization was facilitated by technology, such as unwanted phone calls and text messages. On average, 24 people per minute are victims of rape, physical violence, or stalking by an intimate partner in the United States.”
These statistics underscore a persistent problem in our nation that needs to be rectified now through law.
Republicans continue to make themselves a spectacle when it comes to addressing women’s issues. They’ve refused to vote in favor of renewing the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). Their ridiculous stance has been nothing short of abominable and reprehensible. Two noteworthy candidates for senate seats during the 2012 election campaign cycle made infamous comments regarding rape. Richard Mourdock and Todd Akin’s absurd platforms, luckily, didn’t result in them winning their respective states.
The nation is better off without having such idiocy patrolling the halls of Congress. But many of their conservative allies still promote their jejune agendas. Congresswomen Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Diane Cook (R-TN) are in the process of introducing a new bill to defund Planned Parenthood once the 113th Congress commences next week. This war on women is very real and needs to end.
How did we get to this point? Women are the reason mankind continues to flourish. Memo to my fellow men: Women are more deserving of our protection and respect. We have to become more accountable in policing our brethren and teaching young boys that (mentally, emotionally and physically) abusing girls and women is flat out wrong.
Men must be cognizant that when you attack a woman, you’re hurting someone’s mother, sister, aunt, niece, or cousin and doing irreparable harm. One of the more common forms of abuse is street harassment. Street harassment frightens a woman; it doesn’t make her want to give you her phone number. Respect her space and time. Putting your hands on her in any way is illegal. Stop. These simple truths should be understood, but somehow it keeps going over the heads of many men.
If we are to fully progress as a nation, we must end this unjust war on women once and for all.