FEMME FEED | AN INSTALLATION OF “OF THE MOMENT”
STORIES FOR GIRLS IN THE KNOW.
Upon first seeing the tape released last week of Presidential Candidate Donald Trump proudly bragging about his affinity for being an overall sexual predator, many initial responses were to laugh. Not because it was funny — it’s anything but that, in fact it’s repulsive and deeply offensive — but because many of us knew he had it in him. America was alert yes, but shocked no. It was like an ad campaign for just how prevailing rape culture is in our everyday. A wake up we seemingly needed after a year of mildly addressing campus rape, Brock Turner, and many others. It feels like 2016 is the year of rape culture, not because its a new concept, it has always been around, however it’s the year that we look it in the face and address it as we can no longer ignore it.
As Michelle Obama said in a speech earlier this week in New Hampshire while supporting Clinton’s campaign, we as a country should be made up of individuals “…who think that our nation’s leaders should meet basic standards of human decency”. This something that Trump has shown over, and over that he does not. He has however highlighted boldly that rape culture in America is still prevalent, and engrained in our nations systems from top to bottom. FLOTUS reminded us that “…to dismiss this as everyday locker talk is an insult to decent men everywhere.”
Michelle isn’t the only woman leveraging her platform in the limelight to fight the good fight. Writer Kelly Oxford also took to her Twitter, enraged no less, to start the hashtag #NotOkay where she fueled women to share stories of their first sexual assault evoking that “it’s not just stats.” In 160 characters women came together to overflow the Twittershpere with an overwhelming amount of stories.
It was powerful to see how as a community we are so inflamed by Trump’s words that we came together to share painful, and private scenarios to make an impact. You only have to scroll through the hashtag #NotOkay to feel that every woman has been affected by sexual harassment in some form or another.
We want this mishap of Donald Trump’s to be the final dose of gasoline that ignites us to keep fighting against rape culture, and to finally end it. To quote Michelle Obama one last time, this is a “disrespect of our ambitions and our intellect.” as women.
What you can do to fight rape culture: First and foremost it’s important that you stand by your community of sisters across America and the world to hold strong against what Trump calls “locker room talk” and what we call sexual assault. Second, be a voice for fellow girls who don’t have one by not letting this kind of behavior slide. Third, it’s important that you vote for a candidate that can protect, and fight for your rights. Lastly, go and thank the upstanding gentlemen in your life, as they will be the ones by your side changing the way we deal with this issue.