Male Privilege is Very Real

Male Privilege is Very Real

by T.L. Burgess

The Existential Crisis

America is experiencing a ‘what is happening’ feeling right now. People are realizing that men of power have been getting away with inexcusable harassment to the ‘lesser sex’ – welcome to male privilege. Since the uproar from our recent presidential election, Americans have been shocked to find that there is a serious cultural issue in this country. The country is run by rich males who are allowed to do whatever they want without any serious consequences.

Celebrities are individuals who are seen as role models. Often their actions in their personal lives are connected with their professional work if it appears they have a typical American life. Things like watching children grow up, buying a new house and getting married or divorced are all hot topics but a person is a person. Celebrities are not inherently ‘good people’ simply because the life you see in the magazines suggest it. Yet, there is always this upheaval when you realize that someone with so much power, and money and influence could do something so horrible for so long.

What Can be Done?

Yes, one issue is that people don’t report. Victim shaming is very much a contributor to this. Another issue is that traumatic experiences such as sexual assault often happens more than once. A perpetrator is likely to become a repeat offender if their victim does not report. What about the issue of privilege? Is there a reason why celebrities and Presidents get a free pass? Of course there is, because with great power comes great privilege and the safety of women under such power are inconsequential. How can we empower women, how can we empower men to use and not abuse their power, and when will consequences be equal across the board, regardless of power and money and privilege?

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The Issue with the Media’s Definition of Victimization

The Issue with the Media’s Definition of Victimization

“The issue in light of debunked media accounts about campus rape is not whether to talk about rape, but how to talk about it in a more responsible way.”

– Anne Franks, University of Miami Cyber Civil Rights Initiative

Victimization in the eyes of the media includes a slew of stereotypes, an inaccurate portrayal of accounts and a lack of police investigated facts.

There is this horrible idea that being a victim has a certain number of qualifications and that society dictates whether a person is a true victim or just blowing things out of proportion.

False reports are often the baseline for who should and should not be considered a victim.

Although less than 10 percent of reports are false, it’s the representation of sexual assault and the definitions the media imposes on acts, words and behaviors exhibited by predators that ultimately harm the impact and importance of how damaging sexual assault is.

This may be a shock to some but if you searched ‘Sexual Assault’ in the search box, you find the top news stories that pop up are using phrases like ‘no one reported’, ‘no evidence’, ‘Rape accusation’, ‘Rape was a hoax’, and ‘Suspect’.

There are plenty of other stories that pop up as well speaking more to admissions of guilt. I found this particularly interesting as I scrolled through the headliners because the majority of the articles begin by recounting the accusation and then following it up with a lack of evidence to prosecute.

So, I see this disconcerting depiction of reporting sexual assault, combined with slut shaming, general American acceptance of Rape Culture and a very pressing ‘keep quiet’ culture and I can’t really tell if the producers are trying to help or hinder with shows like Thirteen Reasons Why or movies like I Spit on Your Grave. Is feeling the revenge of a ‘victim’ truly making people understand the emotions someone feels.

Are these shows depicting ‘the perfect victim’ where if you experience anything less, then you needn’t bother others with ‘complaints’.

Is victim the right definition for all people experiencing assault? And Who decides the measure of what someone feels or how being assaulted should affect them?

Are we addressing sexual assault and rape culture properly, with respect but also determination to see things change?

By Tanya Burgess



The brutal act of violence – “Corrective Rape”

The brutal act of violence – “Corrective Rape”


Screams of the wounded soul cry for help;

Shattered by the result of lesions of deluding theories

Inflicted by the dear ones that shall haunt for a lifetime

Living in a hell is no less than living with this reality

The despondent blade cutting the victim open every single day

Whispering traumas into the silent screams of delirium ……..  –  the endured moments of pain witnessed by the victim.

How would one feel if the caring hands that nurture you, push you into the dark dungeons of rape? Shocking isn’t it? But the reality of Corrective rape is so blood curdling that it draws the victim into the deep descending agonous abysm of shock, disbelief, hatred and self- blame forever.

The disturbing reality of Corrective rape:  The term “Corrective Rape” was first coined in South Africa where this inhumane practice of raping gays or lesbians for converting them into heterosexuals was in existence. In simple words, members of the LGBTIAQ community especially the gays and lesbians are subjected to rape in an attempt to cure them of their sexual orientation or homosexuality. Corrective rape is considered as a curative tool and is often facilitated by the family members of the victim – “a distressful reality”. How can parents or family members inflict such a monstrous harm on their own child?

It has been noted that in most of the cases, the perpetrators are cousins, relatives or some close family members and therefore the victims refrain from reporting such crimes. There have been instances where families have handpicked the rapists to discipline and correct their gay/lesbian child. Do you even think these people are humans in the first place?

Homophobic violence is the root cause of Corrective rape that stems out as a hate crime. Every human is entitled to live his/her life freely and with dignity. Likewise, no one is entitled to invade someone’s privacy, freedom and right to safely and freely walk on streets without any fear.

The vicious circle of constant fear, torment, humiliation, stigmatization and unfair discrimination towards LGBT needs to be broken. Stringent laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and rapes have to be formulated to curb such evil happenings. It is quintessential for all to preach about Humanity and consider LGBTAIQ members as humans in the first place. A mere sexual orientation of a person does not entitle perpetrators to rape them, the police to ignore their pleas and society to stigmatize them with unfair discrimination.

A free soul resides in a free body and a free mind and that’s the true essence of being a Human”.