I got a bit grumpy the other day.
When I realised that if I had been attacked that night, I would have gotten no justice.
Let me explain.
As a woman, I am near the bottom rungs of society, as a white person I am near the middle of the ladder, but as a woman, I slip a few rungs. This is not right.
My best friend is a mixed race woman and, depressingly enough, she still gets asked where she’s from. She will reply honestly “Kent”. The people asking will look non-plussed and ask again, as if a woman of colour couldn’t possibly have been born in the UK. Well, guess what, she was.
I digress. In the chains of society, there are rules, old unfair rules that haven’t been changed since before a plague wiped out half of Europe, a fire wiped out half of London and people with epic beards and shady fashion sense failed to wipe out the government. Women are at the bottom. The rungs of society’s ladder are greased and very few are given the correct gloves or cleaners to climb higher. We couldn’t possibly have the average Joe or Joanna climbing to the top of the ladder.
Inconceivable. Especially not a Joanna.
Quite a few years ago I was attacked. I was lucky, my rapist was my then-(long gone) boyfriend, so at least I knew my attacker. That’s deemed almost good, by horrific acts standards.
I went to the police, they were more interested in his tax evasion and bomb making. Probably because they could prove that. He told the officer, that would arrest him just after, everything he had done, including some things I hadn’t told the officer. Officer in question later came and told me he felt sick by what he’d heard.
When my ex was under arrest officially, he changed his tune and refused to give any answers besides “Not guilty” or “no comment”. The police knew what he had done, but because he had said it all before he was officially arrested, it wasn’t admissible to a court.
Eventually I gave the police a bargain to give to him, I would drop the charges, as long as he left town and never came back. A few weeks later, the female ‘rape specialist’ officer who got grumpy with me because I was crying while giving my statement called me at work and called me a liar. Amongst others things. One day, Karma will find that officer and make her learn a very valuable lesson.
I told you that story to tell you this story.
I was walking back to my car after my aerial dance class last week. I have to wear vests in the class as flowy tops are dangerous. They get caught in the hoops and silks and can lead to dangerous falls. A large group of boys walked on the other side of the road, loud and brash, talking about nights out, drinking, getting laid and taking drugs. The usual young male affair. I realised my hoody was unzipped, my shape could be seen and I quickly zipped up my hoody, half ran to the car, got in and locked the doors in record time. Just in case.
Then I realised.
I had run away from a group of boys, fearing I would be attacked and receive no justice because the shape of my breasts were clearly visible.
Is it just me, or is that a very wrong world to live in? To know that if I had gotten raped while wearing my exercise gear, someone in the court room would declare “well, look at what’s she wearing.” Because I exercise.
That is wrong. So very, very wrong. If I were a black woman who had gotten raped while wearing my exercise gear, I doubt it would even have made it to court.
And that ladies and gentlemen is why I hate inequality.
Everyone has a right to justice, no matter their colour, gender, sexual orientation or anything else for that matter.