op-ed: dear women in the world, please stop making a mockery of sexual violence against men

November 12, 2015

On Tuesday, social media outlet Women in the World posted an article about a black man being sexually harassed by two women with a derisive caption: “apparently twerking is a “capital offense” now.” This post was followed by continual jesting from men and women alike in the comments section. Dear Women in the World, Did you know as much as I call myself a feminist, like you all do, I still have perpetuated the very things I despise?

By KiNG, AFROPUNK Contributor 


When I was 8, I was taught men were sex hungry creatures. When I was 19, I was dating a Southern boy for just a summer. Splayed my bare body over his like a starfish in the back of an apartment. He told me he didn’t want to have sex with me, I said to him:
“are you fucking kidding me? you seriously don’t want to have sex with me?”
I still tried to convince him to sleep with me
Tried to make my body into the words lustful and temptation
Did you know he still asked me to stop?
Did you know it took an outburst of anger from him to get me to recoil?
That it took over a year for me to realize I said to him nearly the exact same thing my rapist said to me
It’s funny isn’t it? It’s so hilarious how I didn’t see anything wrong with pushing when I was taught all men will do is push sex onto me
That rape culture has taught me that men don’t get to say no when we both know they always wanted this: My body as a naked tythe. Their hips an offering plate.

Dear Women in the World,

There is something to be said about this
About living in a society where we have inundated our media with hypermasculine images, especially for men of color, to where it’s impossible to fathom they experience sexual violence too.
To where now we call them pussy for not wanting our pussy. For them wanting to understand the meaning of the word intimacy.
For them exercising their right to say no when we all think it should be a yes

Dear Women in the World,

This is called entitlement
Women in the world have been taught entitlement
We can contribute to this festering
wound called rape culture
Called patriarchy
Called gender roles
Called this is all really fucked up
This social conditioning
It gets hard to learn the word
and actually practice it
To actually practice self awareness
To realize as often as
we can point fingers as women
And that still be completely valid
We can be at fault too
We can embody the very thing
we fear and name that revolution
for all the wrong reasons
You had all the wrong reasons to do this
To pitchfork a trauma and name it comedy
To make downplaying into a parade,
with all your followers following suit
I think you are better than this
I think there’s a difference
between a drowning
and a hanging
I think you are doing both
Where everything good you’re trying to do
Is now just trying to stay afloat because
you’re too focused on pulling rope
On finding necks
On the sound of spines
being cracked into silence
There are so many black men in silence
There are so many men in silence
We both know what it means to
be covered in unwanted hands

Dear Women in the World,
It is possible for our hands to
be those unwanted hands too

Dear Women in the World,
We cannot speak this kind
of false sainthood into godliness
I repeat,
We cannot speak this kind
of false sainthood into godliness


KiNG is a 21 year old gender fluid, bisexual, biracial, spoken word poet, as well as co-founder of SLiM Poetry (an open mic at the Container Yard in the Arts District). Through writing and performing, I seek to create dialogue and develop a rapport with readers/audience members. I also intend to shatter stigma pertaining to mental health, feminism, racism, and anything social justice related as well as encourage creative communities to integrate and innovate. 


Instagram: @king.among.men