Being beautiful and sexy isn’t a crime, rape is.

Sexual assault.

Unwanted advances.

Non-consensual sexual language, touching, or “come ons.”

Sexual harassment.

“Cat calling.”

And at it’s worst, sexual abuse that leads to rape.

It seems to always begin the same way; a man sees a woman that he wants to be sexual with, he makes his move.  The woman either accepts the sexual advance or she does not.

Now, a decent man will accept the woman’s NO as just that, NO.  He will not pursue it further, he won’t take it as an insult to his masculinity that needs to be rectified by him ensuring that he gets what he wants.  Most men will move on.  Let it go.  Find another woman to connect with.

And then there are men like Harvey Weinstein.  A man who apparently, according to reports and allegations not only didn’t accept the word NO.  So much so that when asked by Ambra Battilana Gutierrez why he grabbed her breasts he responds with:  “I’m used to that.”

What does that even mean???  Touching a person’s body without their consent, how is anybody used to that?  How does that begin?  Like at what age was he when he just started touching women’s body parts that he wasn’t in a consensual relationship with?

This is unfortunate.  It is unfortunate for so many reasons, but the greatest reason is because of the damage it does to the women who he deemed “up for grabs.”  I’m proud of the women finally, after all these years speaking up against him.  I’m proud of the journalists, and lawyers who believed them enough to break the story, and to stand behind them.  I’m proud of them because we all knew what would happen the minute they did.  They, the women, would be blamed.  The roles would be reversed and in some way it would be their fault.

It isn’t.  It never was.  Regardless of what people say about you in the media, or on social media, this has nothing to do with you.  You didn’t nothing wrong.

From the time I was 9 and started to develop breasts I’ve have had to deal with boys/men who think that groping a woman is completely within in their rights.  I’ve dealt with men who think an unwanted sexual come on is a badge of honour.  That in some twisted way, we the female, who not only doesn’t want it, didn’t invite it are “lucky” that that man finds you attractive enough to grope you, or say disgusting sexual things in your ear in a crowded room.

I’m here to tell you as a recipiant of these “romantic gestures” they are not a compliment, and I can sadly, and confidently type that there is likely not a single woman on this planet who has not been sexually assaulted.  The bottom line is that none of this is okay.  It is assault, and these men are wrong.  Regardless of whether or not you, a woman are having drinks with a man over a business dinner, or you’re in a hotel room having a meeting with a producer or CEO of a company.  (I believe even YB has had meetings in hotel rooms in the past.)  None of this gives a man the right to take what he wants simply because you’re a woman.  A woman isn’t giving consent just because she’s dressed beautifully, and has a beautiful body, and is having a meeting with you.

This is NOT consent.  This a woman putting her best foot forward in an industry that has been built on physical attributes as being the most important part of the job, in the case of 95% of the actresses out there.  If Meryl was told she wouldn’t work because she wasn’t deemed “beautiful enough” for a role; imagine the pressure other women are feeling to “win the role”???

So if you’re one of those armchair critics sitting back, or speaking out like Donna Karan, thank God I don’t own a stitch of her clothing, I find drab and boring, and now I’ll never support her in a million years; saying that in some way shape or form these women; “asked for it.”  You need to take a long hard look at yourself, and ask yourself the one question that I feel usually snaps dumb asses like this out of their stupor:  “WHAT IF IT WERE YOUR DAUGHTER, OR GRANDDAUGHTER?  WOULD YOU FEEL THE SAME??”

And keep this in mind.  Last time I checked it wasn’t a crime to be beautiful, or sexy.  But sexual assault/harassment and rape all are.

5 Comments

  1. Sharla, Thank you for sharing your story, and I’m sorry that one of your daughters experienced the ugliest part of life. I pray, that with your help it makes her stronger, and she may be a voice of empowerment going forward in this wild and wonderful journey called life.
    Much love,
    Shantelle

  2. Gropers. Lived it and I was skinny as a twig with chest as flat as a boy.
    I was told, he (they) didn’t really mean anything by it…. you’re just over reacting.
    PTSD, Borderline Personality Disorder, OCD defined me for many year. I married a gentle man who really had no idea what he was in for. I purposely gained weight (350+ pounds) as protection but found that if some pervert wants to screw with your mind as well, fat isn’t the answer. For all the beautiful and classy ladies who have fought mauling paws, keep shouting.
    Oh, after years of therapy & weight loss (165 now), I learned to make NO mean something, especially when one of my young daughters was molested. Now I pray (and watch like a hawk) my early developing granddaughters know what to do to protect themselves.
    Final note: groppers and molesters are NOT limited to males only. Too many women like touchy-feely as well Maybe those women defending bad behavior are predators as well.

  3. Ohmygawd YES! I’ve been livid for days now, reading as the stories come out. The “worst kept secret” in Hollywood is surely just the tip of the iceberg. And boy, do I feel for those ladies in that position = to have to actually debate (even for a second) whether “giving in” is the right thing to do. This is not a question anyone should ever have to ask themselves. Ever.

    I bloomed early as well, and I spent most of the last part of grade school and pretty much all of high school swatting guys’ hands away from me. For whatever reason, my breasts were deemed public property. I complained to teachers, and nothing was done (surprise). And then I was labeled a “bitch” for not playing along. This is me, in school. I can’t even imagine what it’s like when you think that your career depends on your reaction to this sort of behaviour.

    I spit in the eye of DK and anyone else who so bravely blames the victims. I feel sorry for you and the life in hell I hope is your comeuppance.

    You’ve raised strong daughters, for which I’m sure all of you are grateful. I think we’ve done the same. They can handle themselves. BUT THEY SHOULDN’T HAVE TO.

  4. You are so right, This isn’t right, EVER. Dressing and looking beautiful NEVER means “come and get me” We ask for appreciation and respect and NOT sexual advances or disgusting actions and not a single woman has ever Asked to be raped. Karan is an idiot or should I say Moron.,
    Thanks again for your strong words..

  5. Equally horrendous is the system of agents, secretaries and studio execs who either helped lure these women to his room on pretense or who turned a blind eye. Like Bill Cosby. These predators could not succeed if not enabled by others complicit in their exploitation of women. While this may be how Hollywood rolls it’s wherever men have power over women’s careers. I rejected a guy in the common room of his fraternity house. Next thing I knew I was on the floor and he was on top of me. Other guys walked passed like nothing was happening. Luckily I was strong enough and loud enough to save myself and embarrass the Hell out of that kid. So this entitlement boys feel to act on their sexual urges starts young and is abetted by other males. It’s that feeling of entitlement and that conspiracy women and the men who love us have to fight.

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