AMERICA CAN DO BETTER PART 3

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Submitted Date 09/28/2019
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America Can Do Better
Part 3

 

It's that time of year again when our precious littles are heading back to class after another long, hot summer. There is so much I have to say that I'm not sure where to start. So let's go with the ridiculous body-shaming our young ladies are enduring at the hands of school administration.

When I was in high school, the only dress code violations I ever remember were committed by those daring students wearing Big Johnson t-shirts. For those of you not old enough to have experienced the 90s, these colorful shirts with bikini-clad, big-breasted, cartoon broads and nerdy or redneck dudes depicted in sexual innuendos.

For example:

 

Nowadays, however, it seems dress code violations have gotten out of hand due to our society's constant sexualization of the female body. Young women who are dressed in conservative clothing are being blamed for being a distraction to the classroom solely because her body has curves now. A teen was reportedly told she violated her high school's dress code by being "busty" and "plus-size," and now she's seeking legal action. And in South Carolina, a principal announced to the entire school that only girls who are a size 0 or 2 are allowed to wear leggings as pants because any bigger and you look fat. So basically he implied if you're a 10 on the hot scale it's ok but if your ass looks like mashed potatoes you better dress accordingly.

 

We have taken leaps backward in the equalization of men and women by sexualizing every aspect of the female body. Case in point: breastfeeding in public. Now I personally never experienced any flack for breastfeeding my daughter and frankly, I'm surprised considering she nursed until the age of 3. Have we gotten so hung up on pleasing all the prudes in society that we see breastfeeding as sexual and disgusting instead of the beautiful and loving bonding moment between mother and child?

Are the men in our lives still like the cavemen of old, grunting and grumbling at the sight of the female flesh or is it that other women are so insecure with themselves that they are shaming the women who are confidently raising their baby as nature intended? When did it become ok to blame our young women for enticing our boys and being a distraction in the classroom because a bra strap is showing? Why are boys not being taught how to be respectful to women and treat them like a sister instead of a sex object designed for their enjoyment?

Everyone is quick to blame the internet for all of society's problems but this is not where the problem began. We are failing as parents, as families even, by allowing the system to continue to blame women for the actions of men who cannot control their sexual urges. Time and time again I see news stories of rape victim's reputations being drug through the mud, "she was dressed provocatively", "she was asking for that to happen" et cetera, ad nauseum.

When will our criminal justice system treat rape cases like they are real crimes against real people? Why do we continue to protect these predatory low lives who take advantage of women and defile them for their own sick pleasure?

I was appalled when I read the story of the boy who filmed the rape of an unconscious female at a party and then sent it to all his friends. Thanks to the incompetence or complete disregard for justice by the local police, the boys were instructed to delete the video and damning evidence was forever erased.

Or what about the 26-year-old school bus driver in upstate New York who groomed his 14-year-old victim with gifts and alcohol before inviting her to his home where he raped her? He was allowed to plead guilty to a lesser charge and given probation for his crime.

Our criminal justice system needs a complete overhaul on how it views the crime of rape, how it treats the victims, and how it merely shakes its finger at the perpetrator because we can't just go around destroying these young men's lives with such a negative label as a rapist. What about the victim's life? Who is going to help her understand why she is being blamed for the animalistic behavior of these disgusting and disturbed individuals?

Is it because all too often we hear of women who claim they were raped by someone famous and it's just about getting money or getting even? I agree things can get cloudy when it comes to defining rape and trying to place blame on the victim rather than the attacker. What will it take to open everyone's eyes with regard to how traumatizing rape can really be?

Well, let me tell you a story I experienced first hand and see what you have to say about what we need to do to change our world for the better. I worked as a school counselor in the inner city and during the first week of classes one of our students, a 12-year-old girl, was walking to school when a homeless man dragged her into an alley and raped her.

This innocent child had done nothing more than walk to school on a public street in broad daylight dressed in a school uniform, not a worry in the world other than who she might sit with at lunch that day. A sixth-grade girl with hopes and dreams and now I have to help her understand why this atrocity fell upon her when I myself, at 30-something-years old cannot even begin to comprehend it.

How do I help her understand that she'll have to be tested for STDs and that for the next several months, possibly years, she will have to get tested for HIV? What do I do to help stop the nightmares that now keep her awake at night when just the day before her biggest fear was what her friends would think of her new hairstyle? When will she stop flinching when someone touches her on her arm or taps her on the shoulder?

America needs to do better. Otherwise, what's the point anymore? Stay safe, stay strong, and be a better human being for the sake of us all.

 

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