Monday, 6 November 2017

What Is Happening?

Sexual Harassment has been around for years and now that the flood gates are open, people are finding the courage to discuss what's happened to them. We're seeing it everywhere - on Twitter, on Facebook, the trade papers, and in the news. The evidence is mounting, the calling out is public and global, from the cafeteria worker, to the banker, to the entertainment industry, basically the general workforce. The #metoo revolution has begun and I'm hoping it will bring about a change. Sexual predators need to know that there will be consequences whether it be assault charges, employment loss, civil suits, tarnished reputations, loss of income or public shame. They don't get to repeatedly abuse others and get away with it. The victims are sharing their stories, as painful as it is for them to come forth, they are finding their voices. Kudos to those for being brave, for not being silent, for not taking it anymore because they feel threatened or bullied into being quiet about it. It's causing many to think back and say, "That's happened to me, too."

Sometimes it take a little reflection to jar the memory of it happening. We hear someone else's story and it sinks in. "That's happened to me." Back in 2004-2005, I worked for a start up internet radio company in South Florida. They gave me a show and crappy time slot. After 26 weeks of me making it work, the owner suggested that I sleep with his wife in exchange for better promotion and new time slot for my show. It was all a big joke to me at the time. Looking back, it was a form of harassment. So.. #metoo. After brushing off his offer, he suggested me and a certain pretty, thin co-worker attend a XXX Convention Show in Miami, and offered to pay for the hotel rooms but only if I left my other co-worker behind because she wasn't "the right fit" for the event. My other co-worker was heavier. He stated "...people didn't want to see that."  I promptly quit after that. It wasn't until this new "Me Too" movement started that I realized I had been harassed. At the time, I was angry about him suggesting I drop my co worker because of her physical appearance, but the part about him offering up his wife didn't process until now. Sexual abuse comes in all different ways. That's the part men don't realize. Maybe after reading or hearing more women talk of their awful experiences, in whatever form they took place, maybe then people will start to understand and take responsibility for their actions, and hopefully change their ways. Whether they have done it, or covered it up. It seems simple enough: If you wouldn't say or do it to your wife, mother, daughter or sister - don't say or do it to ANY other female. Same goes for young boys. If you wouldn't do it to your own child, don't do it ANY child. (On another note: Mr. Spacey, certainly don't blame it on your sexuality!) Be an adult, act like an adult. Quit abusing your so-called "power" or "status" to intimidate someone into giving you what you want and maybe figure out WHY it's so important that you get it, at any expense. Identify the fact that you've got a problem. YOU have a problem. Man up and fix it before involving someone else.

In other news, another mass shooting in America. This time in Texas, at a Sunday mass. Another white male shooter killed people with an AR-15 automatic weapon that he purchased LEGALLY. We'll have the NRA repeatedly bringing up our right to bear arms and the gun enthusiasts waving their fists in agreement. The fact remains that no one is disputing the right, we're basically trying to change the laws about purchasing guns. I don't understand why anyone would oppose stricter laws regarding criminal background checks, mental health screenings, and banning automatic weaponry that no civilian needs to protect themselves, their family or their property with. In fact, the civilian who spooked the Texas shooter and got him to stop shooting and leave, did so with a hunting rifle. Unless you are a solider or a serviceman, trained to use an automatic weapon, why else should they be for sale to the general public other than to cause sheer carnage? I don't know any hunters that use them. I don't think you need one of those to shoot rusty beer cans off logs in your back yards. I don't know any situation in every day life that would warrant the need for them or even a bump stock, for that matter. Get a pistol, get a revolver, get a rifle, to make yourself feel safe or have your fun shooting at gun galleries but why on earth would you feel its necessary to get an AR-15 or an AK-47? I don't know how a gun lobbyist can sleep at night or a politican who's pockets are lined by lobbyists can hold their head up in the face of all that's happened. If you want to use high-powered weaponry, Mr. Joe Public, sign up for the military. In the meantime, the fact that someone with a medical history of mental illness can legally obtain a gun or that a criminal background check/screening can be bypassed, in most cases, should make any gun enthusiast a nervous wreck, but instead they fight against any change that could make themselves or the public safer. Makes no sense to me.

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