This was wonderful, thank you! The election has been looming in my mind for a while; I'm really torn between voting strategically for Tory, who seems more likely to oust the Fords, and voting with my heart for Chow. I've always been a heart-voter but I really really really can't stand the thought of another Ford in office.
And I'm SO torn on Tory. He has a lot of garbage-y conservative ideas, but he's also a huge supporter of the arts (and, incidentally, an investor in the arts organization I work for) sooooooo blerg, basically.
I should have said, before I got into it up there, that this is a really wonderful, well-crafted piece, and also I'm absurdly jealous you got to do the writing residency in Banff. Congrats on both accounts.
@sdguy I appreciate that you recognize your comments were poorly worded. I stand by my assessments that you were rude and nit-picking where you have no place.
This is the author's personal story, and the personal stories of people she knows. Even though this is the internet and you're technically free to say anything you want, it's still rude and disrespectful to tell her that what happened was her own fault, or her story is irrelevant. You wouldn't say that to a friend who told you this same story. This isn't a case study; the author is a person.
Your comment is exactly the kind of thing that shames and discourages victims of abuse from talking about what happened to them. I think we can both agree that the best thing for breaking cycles of abuse, particularly the types we don't hear much about, is to encourage more people to report and talk about their experiences.
Again, there is nothing in here that calls all men out as abusers, but points out a trend of abusive men in positions in power. She writes that she shared stories with other women, who were all harassed by men. Then she refers to the abusive men as "These men." The only way the author could have been more explicit is if she posted a disclaimer stating that not all men are rapists, and who does that benefit? Does this sort of personal account really warrant qualifiers?
@sdguy A relationship doesn't have to be non-consensual to be abusive, for one party to take advantage of the other, to create long-term emotional damage, etc etc. The author shared her own very personal story, about a professor who initiated an inappropriate with his student (many times, apparently) and who made forceful advances on her when she was intoxicated. If you have no sympathy for her based on your own experience, I guess that's fine for you; but you are not the author and you're not qualified to invalidate HER experience, just as she would have no business assuming you're a victim without knowing yours. You're being rude and dismissive.
Male victims of abuse are indisputably under-represented in narratives about rape, abuse, and harassment, but a) a woman sharing her story of abuse (whether or not you think it qualifies) does not delegitimize the stories of male abuse victims, and b) the author is very literally talking about a group of specific men. She shared a story with other women in her field, and they all shared stories about men who abused them. It's not a sweeping statement, that men are always the abusers and women are always the victims. It's an extremely literal 'they'. And even if it wasn't, there doesn't need be a "not all men" disclaimer if we're talking about abusers -- of both men and women!
For someone who is supposedly sticking up for abuse victims, your nit-picking over what constitutes rape or abuse or harassment makes me think you're a terribly poor ally for a man who has been abused, considering how many men and boys do try to speak about their experiences and are totally dismissed.
"DOES IT NOW"
Bless you and your transcripts, Jia.
Susan Schorn, I like you a whole lot.
CANADAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! [aggressive flag-waving]
Also the goal post has a Twitter account already: https://twitter.com/GoalPostEh
THIS IS SUCH A GOOD AND IMPORTANT STORY.
Also, fuck that one teacher who called you stupid. What an ass.
YESSSS SO EXCITE. I just bought this for my Kindle, based mostly on my extreme love of Reading Between the Texts but also because the one-sentence summary is my life. LOOKING FORWARD TO READING HOW YOU INTERPRET BEING ME, KATIE HEANEY.
Dear god, if only all customer complaints could be handled thusly.