Dear Feminists, Will You Also be Marching in N***erwalk?
1 year ago
The SlutWalk movement misses the mark
The only thing more irritating than people doing absolutely nothing to make the world a better place are those actively trying to make it worse, but coming in a strong third?
Those whose well-meaning efforts to make the world better are so misguided that they actually make things worse.
I was reminded of this when I happened upon the “Slutwalk” protest taking place in New York this past weekend…with my mother. (If you’re looking for something super memorable to do with your mom in the Big Apple might I just say that Broadway shows have nothing on watching a bunch of adults parading around in their underwear in broad daylight in the name of allegedly making a serious political statement.)
Now before the SlutWalk army gets their undergarments in a twist and adds me to their enemies list, let me state for the record that we are on the same side when it comes to the issues. But when it comes to execution in addressing said issues? Not so much.
For those who don’t know SlutWalk (yes that’s the actual name) originated in Toronto when a group of students organized a protest in response to a police constable’s comments that “women should avoid dressing like sluts in order not to be victimized."
Months later, the first so-called SlutWalk was held.
Like every person with a brain and any person with a heart I find that constable’s comments appalling. Just as I found the acquittal (on the most serious charges) of the so-called NYC “rape-cops” appalling. But we’ve all heard the saying, “Two wrongs don’t make a right.” Well two stupids don’t make a smart, something Slutwalk is a powerful reminder of.
According to CBC News Canada the event’s website at the time read, "Toronto Police have perpetuated the myth and stereotype of the slut, and in doing so have failed us…Barnett [the organizer of the event] said she wants to use the walk to reclaim the word and also demand that victim-shaming change.”
That’s certainly a worthy goal. But here’s a newsflash for Barnett and the organizers of the other SlutWalk protests which have begun to spread throughout the world, you can’t “reclaim” a word defined by a predominant group in power unless you are a part of that group. Just ask all of those people on a mission to “reclaim” the N-word for black Americans or the F-word for gay Americans. (How’s that working out by the way?) As long as white males in power (or anyone else) can use a particular word as a pejorative to denigrate a particular group — and you acknowledge that them doing so will offend you as a member of that group — then you using it is not “reclaiming” it but simply perpetuating it.