He explains that he understands compliance intimately by sharing this story: as younger men he and friends were stopped and robbed by police. Their choice, he suggests, to face the wall, hands up as told and accept the stick up, saved their lives.
The training, racing, and creative process...is a triumph over the physical and psychic conditions just outside the parameters of control which would censor and stilt performance.
So we had a Title IX briefing. My ears were weary; my soul hurt; and my brain nearly exploded. But before it did I recorded these to share with my colleagues sometime after I meet the Wizard and get myself some courage: Pro-tip 1: Transgender, homosexual, non-binary, bisexual--none of these are synonyms for pedophile or [...]
Rape culture is NOT gendered. We make a mistake of unwittingly participating in the victimization of those who are also, or are in danger of being, affected and moreover abused by it when we don’t acknowledge that.
It is no easy demon to face who has dressed you and your entire context as “fine.”
Trust me, I am not hiding anything in my art, my writing most specifically, any more than when it was layered in imagery. It is all there. Pause in the white space and you’ll see that you get it after all. Okay so maybe I would rather people not pause because that art is my heart and soul on Front Street
I am here to talk about silence. And the violence of it. How it traumatizes the body that practices it as well as the bodies it is imposed upon. I want to talk about how it (silence, I mean)—and I made up this word—invisibilizes. And how that act—to render someone, a body, invisible is violence. [...]
He took sex instead of your life; maybe the glass bottle he threw at you missed; you were named “bitch” and any other list of monikers that do not appear on your birth certificate; the old woman turned on the porch light and startled him and his pistol away; he left you in the street alone and lost in a city that was not your own. You made it out alive. None of those were missteps of the fragile male ego or drunkenness. They were not about how you lead him on or were rude or rash when you refused to comply to his demand for your attention. They were about the agency you have over your life and how you live it and being denied that agency so often
We know that the rules of engagement; the strategies for survival that Baldwin and Johnson try to outline are flimsy at best.
I don't typically celebrate these kinds of anniversaries. But I do know that I have need to say that they existed more than that they died. Just like we exist and will cease to. I hope we are all remembered by the lives we lead and that the way life leaves does not supercede that part.