April 3, 2011 Leave a comment
Answering the questions put forth by the Crunk Feminist Collective I linked to earlier.
In a culture where sisters are dying in alarming numbers from domestic violence, what responsibility do I have to them and to myself to choose intimate partners whose thinking and actions are sound on these matters?
All of it? I assume that as a feminist, I’m supposed to practice what I preach. This probably means that I should demand the same standards for myself that I demand for everyone else. Choosing an intimate partner (and understanding the privilege I have in the to choose) with questionable politics doesn’t really give me any credit when I ask people (those who can) to choose their partners carefully.
How can I get next to you if I can’t get next to your politics?
I can’t. This is of course a personal decision that will probably continue to make dating in the current proliferating rape-culture very difficult. If I can’t trust you with my person, how the heck I can I trust you, period?
How can I let you touch me if I wouldn’t touch your politics with a ten foot pole? Can I feel safe in the softness of your touch if you don’t feel led to question a culture where other men routinely touch other women violently? Can we really cuddle if you have the option to not care about women and violence?
See above. And really, if you’ve gotten this close already, I need to re-examine my choices. Quite frankly, if I have to mentally flinch at anything harder than a caress because we once discussed violence against women and you said something shady (especially if you showed no signs of willing to change your mind), it’s not worth it.
I can do bad all by myself.
Isn’t that choice, the choice to not care about how the world affects the woman you’re spending time with, a violent one?
This exactly. The question answers itself, doesn’t it?
How can I trust you to hold me when your beliefs hold me down?
Simply put, I can’t.