In response to Zerlina Matthews on Sean Hannity's Show on 3/9/13 a few listeners attempted to prove that the average IQ of a Fox News Listener lies somewhere between a rock and a moss plant. You would have thought we were living in 1692 Salem and Hannity was Judge Hawthorne pronouncing judgement on one of those accused of witch craft to hear the demands for her to be raped and killed.
Ms. Matthews, who is herself the victim of sexual assault, had the sheer audacity to suggest that arming women was not a solution to rape and that maybe telling women what to do was not placing the responsibility for confronting rape where it belonged, with the men.
With in minutes of making this point Ms. Matthews was besieged with comments such as one Michael Shapiro(probably not his real name) who stated in a Twitter, "N*****! I hope you get raped and your throat slit. Maybe then you will understand why white women have to be armed! Die B****."
This incident will not go away quietly. Ms. Matthews was on MSNBC on 3/11/13 on the Ed Show suggesting she will not be bullied into silence. MSNBC is not above exploitation to improve its ratings any more than Fox trumps up controversy on its part. Guns and gender wars sell listeners and are a marvelous diversion from the collapsing of our nation economically, but no one seems invested in real solutions.
Lately the Conservative solution for everything has been to go get a gun. Have a problem with violence in the schools, arm the teachers. Have a problem with violence in the streets, arm everybody. It is truly a wonder that Republicans haven't suggested arming the unemployed as a solution to unemployment.
After thirty years of pushing extreme Individualism America now is a detachment disordered society. Rape and sexual assault are two major symptoms of this failure of Americans to feel a sense of connection to each other. As our willingness to accept corporations destroying jobs and whole communities for profits so aptly demonstrates, even human beings are now a commodity, at least of the disposable variety.
It would be laughable if the statistics weren't so tragic when you hear Republicans blame Gays for the failure of heterosexual marriage. Our low wage economy is far more destructive of any relationships than being Gay. But that gets us to the underlying culprit, fear.
For the last thirty years America is nothing if not a fearful place to live. We have been fed the idea that we should be afraid of immigrants, terrorists, Gays, the poor, the government, men or women and anyone who doesn't look and think like us. Ultimately fear creates a sense of learned helplessness into which the Right injects the idea that you can confront your fear with firearms. They seductively suggest that firearms give you the only power you will ever have. You have to be ready for , for what?
Guns only have the ability to confirm power if you live in a survival of the fittest world where every aspect of life is reduced to a struggle for survival. Guns do not give you a sense of a spiritual connection to a power greater than yourself. The power to create life, or to take life is a mimicry of God but you can only really know God through love, love of others not narcissistic self love, which is the only love society teaches because narcissism is profitable.
Life is cheap when life is a commodity in some phony man made Free Marketplace that is little more than a crass manipulation of the sin of greed, and avarice. It is not living because living requires some sense of spiritual connectedness to each other that fear destroys. Fear is the very absence of faith.
It doesn't require women to arm themselves to confront rape any more than it takes a gun to confront ones fears. It takes men who are willing to be men and take responsibility for the fact that men can be expected to control our own feelings. A man doesn't rape because the woman wore a bikini to the beach. Rape is not about sex it is about power and control and a sense of lacking both.
The power of being a man once came from within. After thirty years we should have learned by now being a man doesn't come from the caliber of your gun. As the Hannity show the other night proved, lots of little boys can fire big guns and when the smoke clears they are still little boys. Can you fire your imagination and rekindle your hopes and dreams and can you work to rebuild relationships based on respect and caring?