It struck me today that one of the first steps we all must take in the fight against gender based violence is to start actively paying attention and noticing gender based violence.
How we each do this will be different, but for me, since starting my work at ILF, it means filtering the world through a new lens and quietly asking myself “was that gender based violence?” or “is there a message here about gender based violence?”
When someone like TMZ decides to post a video that is an extreme and obvious case of gender based violence (as in the Ray Rice situation) it is easy for everyone to say “well yes, that was a case of gender based violence, we need to do something about it.”
But what about all of the non-obvious, non-in-your-face examples?
- What about the two kids that I always see playing in the local playground, sometimes with their 2 year old sister. Why do they NEVER want to be at home?
- What about the gym teacher at the local high school who constantly smirks at his male students when one of the more well-endowed girls jogs by in class?
- What about the sad little girl who went to the day home next door to my house that nobody noticed until the caregiver’s husband went to jail last year for molesting her?
If we are observing the world like everyone else all of these may slip below our radar.
But, if we start actively watching for gender based violence (and I am not saying this is easy, so take care of yourself) the number of incidents starts to become more and more clear, and it is only then we start to realize how important the commitment to ending gender based violence really is.
So, what was it that struck me today and brought this realization into the light?
The song Face Down by Red Jumpsuit Apparatus. This song has been out since 2007 and is tied as the longest-running song on the Modern Rock Tracks chart at 52 weeks. I have heard it countless times and thought nothing about it other than “great song, I like it”.
Today I watched the music video, with my new found GBV filter, and, wow, was I missing the point:
Share your ideas about making gender based violence more obvious to the world in the comments below.
Love & light,
ILF Team Member & Guest Blogger