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Saturday, March 16, 2013

OF RAPE CULTURE AND CONDITIONAL BIGOTRY: KILLING US SOFTLY



TRIGGER WARNING!!  THIS POST CONTAINS MY PERSONAL OPINIONS ABOUT RAPE AND BIGOTRY. Nothing is explicit. I have strong opinions and I do not wish to send anyone into a rish of anxiety or distress. I have not posted this to offend or disturb anyone, least of all, victims of rape, abuse, and bigotry. I have been raped. I don't go into details, but strong triggers may go off. I apologize profusely for not having this warning up right from the start. I want to make it clear that I in no way intend to diminish, belittle or discount anyone's experiences or life history. I do not in any way believe that death is better or would have been better than rape. We are all valid and worthy human beings of living a long productive and healthy life. My point is only to say, it that we are forever changes, and set on a different path than otherwise would be the case. I am so sorry to my friends, and one in particular, I am crushed to have offended. I am so so Sorry.

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There are a couple of things in the news right now, particularly in my current State of residence, Ohio, that are really rubbing me wrong. The first is the Stuebenville gang rape of a teenage girl. I've been hearing all day long about today's testimony, centering on the girl having been flirting. What does flirting have anything to do with a crime of violence. When will our society get it through it's thick skull, that rape is a crime of barbarism and violence, and not of sex or sexuality. The perpetrators get to go ahead and "kill" their victim. And yes, I boldly use the word "kill" because that is exactly what they are doing. They are killing the innocence of their target. They are killing the hopes, wishes and dreams, killing a lifetime of thoughts and feelings, killing their heart and soul, and inflicting into their targets minds a lifetime of worry, fear, rage, hate, inhibition, impediment, regret and myriad sentiments and feelings that diminish the life of every human being targeted for rape. Simply put, to rape someone is to kill them. That person can never ever be the same person. They are dead and gone, and no longer alive as they once were

I speak from experience. In so many ways I was robbed, and killed, away, from the person and life I might have lived. Having been born with labia, that was later mutilated, and fused together, subjected to over seven years of poisonous testosterone to force a male puberty onto me, are just the tip of the ice burg. I too was raped. I was raped and abused over a more than two year period, by a neighbor that confronted me and my transgender identity. He comforted me, befriended me, showered me with girl clothes and pretty things, then used it all against me.

It all took a most horrible twist when he took me to see a matinee of Fantasia, while I was dressed en-femme. We strangely sat way over to the side of a very large, ornate theater. I don't remember if there was anyone else there, because my world was forever changed, and I can never watch Fantasia to this day. It was unspeakable horror, that I have only recently come to grips with. This man continued to have his way with me for two more years, until I had the ability to beat him off of me once and for all.

That wasn't the end of being "killed" though. I was violently raped by a man who by knife point, backed me back into the women's restroom at a park I was crossing at 4 am while doing my morning papers, dressed en-femme. I was 14, and I had just ended the other 2 year ordeal. I was 2 years into taking testosterone, but still had much of the natural female characteristics. I'm only now coming to grips with all of this, 35 years later. This happened because I am Transgender, and because I am female. These things never would have happened had those two things not been true. But I was so afraid of telling anyone because I would be discovered as a deviate, a freak. Most likely they'd lock *me* up and I'd be raped by numerous men there. Or beat up, or they'd tell me I was wrong to think of myself as a girl.

You see, I understand being raped. I lived it. No matter how generous and kindly it is, and how many gifts are given, and facilitating of ones true identity the perpetrator is, it is always a crime of violence. Each time it kills you, and continues to follow you and kill you all your life. To hear today, that the young girl here in Ohio, was "asking for it", that she flirted with them, and thus deserved what she had coming, is a sign that we are a very very sick society, that we would even entertain such ludicrous notions. Just because your "wild oats" are happening to you, does not give you license to kill. You never ever have licence to perpetrate, either sober or drunk or stoned. These jokers are admitting what they did, but they say, "she was flirting with us, so she wanted us to gang rape her and manipulate her lifeless body". On what planet are they from? No hominid can ever get away with such things.

We need to see these fowl representations of the human race go to prison for 40 years without the possibility of parole. There needs to be a message loud and clear, that this can never be tolerated. Men do these things, *kids* do these things because they know full well, that even if they are convicted, which is usually 90% unlikely because it is never even reported, that they may face 5 years, 1 or 2 with good behavior. The Commandment in scriptures is, "Thou Shalt not Kill". It is *not* "Thou Shalt not Murder". It is Killing people that is so much more meaningful. There are myriad ways to kill people that have nothing to do with turning a warm body, cold. It is foolish to think of a rape and our (America's) Rape Culture, as anything but a "Killing Culture of Violence against Women".

The other thing I wanted to get off my chest today was the change of heart of Senator Rob Portman, a Republican from Ohio, and longtime anti LGBT Bigot. I'm hearing so much praise heaped on him, but I'm sorry, I'm just not feeling it. Being that I'm living the results of conditional love being inflicted upon me, I'm keenly aware of the notion of "Conditional Bigotry". Sen. Portman doesn't get to be a conditional bigot and not be called out on it. He has ruined the lives of thousands of LGBT people. His son coming out as Gay, doesn't get to wash away all the heartache and bullicide that has ocrured in a holocaustic genocide against LGBT people engenderd, fostered, coddled, aided and abetted, enfranchised, and empowered by codification efforts to put evango-nazi and Christo-fascist religioistic doctrine into American law.

First of all such efforts by the Radiacal Religios Right go against many Church's own doctrine, as it does mine. I am ashamed and embarrassed by the LDS Church's past efforts to dis-edify LGBT people. A most Un-Godly and decidedly anti-Christ act. No Jesus or God I know, or would ever care to know would sponsor or ever acquiesce to such efforts. We don't get to force everyone into "our" Church by virtue of forcing them to abide our Church Doctrine against their free will and agency. It is direct violation of the 11th article of faith and D&C 134. It also a direct violation of the Constitution, "equality under law", and "freedom of and from religion". What about the ever increasing number of religions that are LGBT welcoming and inclusive. We are in violation of their religious freedom.

So, I posit the theory of "Conditional Bigotry"...be it Religioistic, Ignorant, or malevolent...is all the same, and should always be called out and utterly opposed with all vigor as to wrestle the Earth From Fools and Make Heaven a Place on Earth for all mankind. Lets take Religious bigotry. If your religion espouses bigotry, that's fine, just keep it in your own Church. You have no right to perpetrate it, and no promise to flout it in the public square. Ignorant Bigotry, the kind some Homophobes, Transphobes and other LGBT people seem to wallow in and claim "I'm not a bigot, *but*"/ "Love the sinner, *but* hate the sin/ "just because I'm for traditional family values *doesn't make me a bigot"--DIATRIBES.  I want to make something very clear to these folks, the *effects* of the causes you are making *are* killing people...and killing them cold and six feet under....as in a holocaust, a genocide.

The targets of the 3 Bigotries (Religioistic/Ignorance/Malevolence) are not given the benefit of distinguishing between the styles. They, all LGBT people, only know we are hated, despised, denigrated, dis-edified, kept separate, inferior, alienated, otherized, dis-enfenchised, dis-empowered, and prevented from loving committed relationships. Being prevented from partaking in Love, Empathy and Compassion is incomprehensible. It doesn't matter what your lifestyle of bigotry that one engages in, it's effects are all the same. People to one degree, or another, are a diminished as a direct result of your actions or acquiescence's.  All three of these are lifestyle choices, unlike what being LGBT is. Claiming your religion asked you to be a bigot, or claiming ignorance of the end results of the effects your causes were and are making, does not and will never absolve anyone of the sins of being a bigot.

We all need to work on it. I am not perfect. I have to work on *Un-learning Bigotry* every single day of my life. Our society, our culture, does so much to foster tribalism, supremacism, and bigotry. It is the worst part of an otherwise wonderful world we live in. I actually thing things are pretty good, and getting better every day.

Senator Portman doesn't get to be a hero though. We need to thank him for joining the 20th Century, but we need to inculcate into him that it is well worth it to join us in the 21st century. You don't get to claim you were only engaging in conditional bigotry. Bigotry is bigotry--hate is hate--Love is Love....there are no conditions to any of it! I have never conditionally loved anyone. I loved my wife when we married, and despite what I'm going through I love my wife every bit as much. I lover the family members, in-laws, that ostracized me 18 years ago. I also am a *bigot*, and proudly so......I absolutely have unconditional bigotry for bigots. I will call it's wretched stink out every single time whenever, whatever, or however it rises up by Un-Christlike choices, or any kind of choices. I am duty bound to do so, *because* of my faith, my hope, may charity, and indeed my Love, Empathy, and Compassion....thus my name, Leanora(h). Those are my core principles and I'm sticking to them.

6 comments:

  1. I think you're a little harsh on the Ohio senator. Everyone has a right to change their mind and it takes a lot of courage to stand up and admit that he was wrong.

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    1. I appreciate your comment, Seagulljaap. I can appreciate the Senators change of heart without elevating him to hero status, or diminishing the lives his bigotry effected. Yes, he has joined the good side, and I like him for it. But I will not applaud him for something that human beings should already be doing. These two subjects in particular. I will stand beside him to defend him against the new bigotry he will face in his own party and ideology. Yes indeed. Everyone does have the right to change their mind. I hope and pray my family changes their mind about me, but that is a change over conditional love rather than conditional hate. In the end, nothing is for me to judge. Period. Only one can ever judge.

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  2. NO, Leah is RIGHT. Now this Senator changes because the LGBT struggle has a FACE on it, a FACE he helped bring into the world. He is NO BETTER than the bigot in Mississippi who says he cannot be racist because he has a "black friend" he drinks coffee with every morning at the plant, never mind he laughs at racist jokes with his white friends the rest of the time, would NEVER vote for President Obama, is staunchly Republican, and hasn't conceded that the South lost the war. All this time persecuting LGBT people,and now that it benefits HIM, he's changed his views? REALLY?

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    1. Elisa,
      Thank you for your comments, and support. You and I are in agreement on this, that people don't get to be called hero's because they are "Unconditionally" loving their Child, even after admitting to being someone you formerly hated. Everyone should not have to have a child or parent, relative or friend come out as LGBT, in order to convince them that there bigotry is wrong. It should not even take a Church Leader announcing by Proclamation that it's okay not to be bigoted any longer. I personally worked on campaigns against Portman. I saw him call us vile hateful names, that we cared nothing of God, or Families, that we were not on the side of good or righteousness, that LGBT people deserve not to be considered fully a human being, worthy of equality and fairness. He spoke willfully and deliberately to sanction and target LGBT people for discrimination, injustice, and inequality. His willful words gave direct aid and comfort to malevolent bigots that did go out and commit hate crimes. He comforted those that spew their hate all over our society, engendering them, emboldening them with hatefulness and superiority. A supremacism that says they are deserving of special rights than certain people shouldn't have. Yes, Portman definitely persecuted LGBT people.

      All of that will be answered for, and it is not for me to make judgement's. But I really have a problem with all the hate in the world. In fact I hate, hate. So much so, I will always call it out. The time is always the right time to do the right thing--MLK.

      Humbly,
      Leah

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  3. On your comments on Rape, I hear you and agree with you.

    On Portman, I wish he had followed up his statement immediately with an offer of restitution -- which would also naturally flow out of his faith tradition. He should have offered to get crackin' and do something good, posted his email and phone number and said, "I've done wrong by not standing for the right because I couldn't see the light before, but now I do and I'm ready to undo harms that I have assisted in creating."

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    1. Dear Kuato,
      Please give me correction, on how I should view rape. Maybe I don't think it vile or terrible enough? I could move to a more harsh view of rape, but I doubt I will ever soften my view on the severity of the criminal act. I should have prefaced that these are my opinions. I don't think everyone's experience with rape is the same, only that this is how I feel, and this is how it effected me. I simply am not who I may have been had those things not happened to me. I will never ever have a chance to know who I may have been. None of this defines me.

      On Portman, I agree with what you say. That would have gone a long way to assuage my feelings for him, not that he'll ever have my vote for anything.

      I think I regret posting this blog post. But I'm going to leave it up to show that I'm not so perfect. I'm a flawed human being. People will disagree with me, and I will hurt and offend my family and very best friends. I am hurt whenever those I love are hurt. It hurts me when anyone is hurt. I have learned a valuable lesson. Never post a reaction to the news, especially when my *own* triggers have been set off, without setting it aside at least for a few hours, if not a day or so.

      In Love and Humility,
      Leah

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