Monday, October 16, 2006

Why I'm afraid to take out the gabage

I have about 3 trash bags in my kitchen that desperately need to be thrown out. Why don't I just take them out to the dumpster you ask? Well I keep forgetting to take them out during the day, and I am afraid to take them out at night. Why am I afraid? That’s another good question, well my dumpster is next to a nice dark alley, and I am a Black Woman in a predominantly white area. I'm afraid that some drunken white college guy will see me and think hey, I wonder what it's like to be with a black girl. I'm worried that some guy period will see me as an easy mark. I am afraid of being violated in my own home.
I get so mad when I think about all of this, because this is the reality of being a Black woman in this world. The reality of being a Black lesbian in this world is that I fear that the guy I work with who I sense is threatened by my sexuality will try to "change" me. Do I really think that I chill with a man who would rape me? Not really, but you can never truly be sure. Rapists don't wear signs on their heads saying "beware I like to rape women", so I'm left to live with this constant fear that at any moment, at any place, I can be raped. No where is truly safe, my grandmother was raped at a church function, when she was a teenager. My favorite professor/ mentor/ future wife, who doesn't know it yet, once told me that sexual assault is an act of terrorism against women. I really identified with that statement because it's true; the potential of being raped is something that all women are aware of. I don't know what it is about my dumpster that makes me more afraid then walking down the street to a friend's house, but I won't walk out there at night.
My fear was reinforced as I went to Take Back the Night and I heard the stories of so many women who had been violated by men, men the knew and men they didn't. It just reminded me that no one is safe. I wish I didn't know as many people as I do that had been sexually assaulted by men. I have a cousin, who was raped by an unknown stranger years ago and she has not been able to trust men since. That one night changed her life forever! What are we to do? As I write this I grow more and more frustrated because I don't have any answers. I don't know what to do to rectify this situation. I fear that this is just the burden that I and many like and unlike me must bear.

3 comments:

Jason Hughes said...

I don't even know what to say to that...

It's a shame, it's a disgrace as to what this says about our country, it's sad that you need to even have this thought cross your mind, that you might be in danger...

I apologize on behalf of America that you feel this much fear.

And perhaps maybe you should get a dog? I know that's not always practical, though...

I know when my sister was away at college on her own for the first time, she used to get the other girls in her dorm to go with her everywhere, even down to the vending machines just a few feet away. Do you have any friends close by you could just hang out with and say, "Hodl on guys, come with me to the dumpster real quick, and then we'll go to... _____"?

I know you have inner strength to overcome your fears. I only hope it doesn't place you in danger...

Stay strong, and know that we're'll trying to make this a safer, better country (oh, god! Now I sound like a republican!! Shoot me now!!)

Who knows? In the future, we'll all have little ray guns to zap garbage and evil people into nothing with just the flick of a wrist... :D

Darkmind said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jason Hughes said...

Ahh, Darkmind, is the blog world not big enough for both of us? :D

You are an evil supervillain... not an evil person. The difference in my mind? You aren't after individuals to ruin their lives and destory their individual realities... you are after world domintaion to mold the world in which we live as you see fit.

You see? You aren't the threat to those who live in fear of being raped--you are the threat that means I may not be able to find chocolate covered pretzels when you decide for the purposes of an evil world that they can no longer be tolerated...

At least, that's how I see it in my mind... :D

“I remember how being young and black and gay and lonely felt. A lot of it was fine, feeling I had the truth and the light and the key, but a lot of it was purely hell.” ~Audre Lorde