Why women remain silent about sexual assault

by Guest Blogger Gail Z. Martin

I’ve seen some posters say “I don’t know why women who run into a Harvey Weinstein don’t just say ‘no’ or report him.”

For the same reason that a bunch of powerful, wealthy white men (senators and congressmen) are putting up with our Abuser-in-Chief. Look what happens to the people who say no. weinstein trumpThey are fired, mocked, publicly humiliated, demeaned, have their qualifications discredited, their character assassinated and get pilloried in the court of public opinion. 45s loyalists troll them on social media and in sympathetic news media. They’ll be cut out of lucrative deals and not invited to business and social events where important things happen and movers and shakers talk. Favors and contracts will be withheld. A whisper in an ear will close doors on new jobs or plum appointments. And while 45 may not swing a punch, we see plenty of angry sympathizers ready to escalate to violence with a hint of permission that are scary enough to make anyone hesitate to rock the boat.

This is how abusers work, whether it’s a small-town bully, a gaslighting boyfriend or an emotionally abusive father. The pattern against those who are targeted or who dare to speak out or say no is ignore, mock, discredit, isolate, demean, destroy.

Intimidation is abuse.

So if Congress can be intimidated by a master abuser, let’s not throw shade on young actors and actresses who knew that no one would have listened to them when they were ‘nobody’ against a powerful person who had the ability to destroy their lives.

Gail Z. Martin is a novelist who writes thrilling fantasy and science fiction adventures. her web page is here.

 

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It’s difficult to have Republican friends these days

I certainly used to have Republican friends. In fact, I even voted for Republicans in the past. Why, in the 90s, I even voted for William Weld for Governor of Massachusetts because he was (believe it or not) more liberal than the Democrat who was running.

Hard to believe that there used to be liberal Republicans as well as conservative Democrats.

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cartoon by David Horsey

But thanks to gerrymandering, Fox News, and Citizen’s United, those days are gone. The GOP has gone farther right than anyone would have ever expected and the Democrats have moved right with them.

Issues that would have been considered moderate when I was younger are now thought of as radical liberal ideas. Just look at Europe, Canada, and Australia for examples. Their “conservatives” would be liberals here in America. It’s not that the rest of the world has moved to the left so much as we have gone so far off to the right as to be unrecognizable to the rest of the civilized world.

Many of my more reasonable conservative friends no longer call themselves Republicans, because even they see that it has gotten out of control. How can they support a party that embraces hatred, bigotry, homophobia? How can they support a party that decries diplomacy, that promotes huge deficits, that wants to install a Christian theocracy? How can they support such a childish, incompetent President?

And that’s why I just cannot honestly call Republicans “friends” any more. It’s why I won’t vote for any Republican, even if it’s just for dog catcher. Unless you convince me that you are trying your best to change the party and rid it of Trump and the alt-right, I have to assume that you approve of what the party is doing.

And if you approve of the party that only cares about rich, white, straight, Christian men; that does not speak out against nazis marching in our streets; that thinks guns are more important than lives; that wants to take away the rights of non-Christians — then I’m not sure how we can be friends.

GOP on guns: Let’s try doing nothing. Maybe that will work

GOP: Mental illness is the problem, not guns.

Dems: Women have mental illnesses in the same percentages as men, but only men do these mass shootings.

GOP: Look! a squirrel!squirrel

Later:

GOP: Mental illness is the problem. We should be addressing that instead. By the way, we’ve closed all the mental facilities, defunded money for them, and removed “mental health” from health insurance coverage. Oh, and also made it easier for the mentally ill to get guns.

Mental illness affects people all over the world. Yet, for some reason, the rest of the world doesn’t have these things happen every few weeks. Hmm, what’s the difference? What is it about America that gives us gun death numbers that dwarf all other civilized countries?  Could it be … guns?

Somehow, the gun lovers are convinced that since we can’t stop all gun violence, we shouldn’t do anything at all.

GOP: “Terrorists have used planes to attack us! Quick, let’s make everyone take off their shoes, go through huge searches, stop them from bringing toothpaste on board, and be subject to a ‘no flight’ list of those suspected!”

“Guns have killed thousands each year unnecessarily! Too bad there’s absolutely nothing we can do about it.”

Well, we can do something about it. Every country that has has seen a huge drop in violent gun deaths. Every state that has discovered that their violent crime decreased as well. Will this stop all gun deaths? Of course not, any more than laws against drunk driving have stopped all drunk drivers. But the laws certainly have reduced the amount of accidents on the road.

“Let’s give up and not do anything to solve this problem” seems to be the most unAmerican thing you can say.

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Take a knee protests are not anti-veteran

If you think these protests are against veterans, you’re either (a) willfully misinformed or (b) aware that they’re not but are claiming they are so you can dismiss them.

Neither option is admirable.

Denver Broncos versus the Buffalo Bills