Violence against women has been a hot topic lately. I think a lot of important points are coming to light. I also think some people are blowing things out of proportion.

In response to the outcry of violence against women #NotAllMen has emerged. I really want to say that it is stupid and unnecessary, but alas, I cannot do that.
I would think that most rational people know that not all men are abusers. Not all men are creepy. Not all men.

Unfortunately, there is a small subset of radical feminists who insist that it is all men. That even if a man doesn’t engage in predatory behaviour himself, he is guilty by virtue of being a man.
I don’t understand this mentality. Do these women not have fathers, brothers, sons, friends? Surely they have not been victimized by everyone in their lives.
How can these people justify labelling someone as guilty based on gender? Imagine the outcry if it was reversed. Or if it was based on skin colour or ethnicity, or the colour of someone’s eyes.

Maybe….maybe, it would be possible to argue that all men have, at some point, inadvertently made a woman uncomfortable. However, I imagine that the reverse is true as well – that all women have made a man uncomfortable at some point. I know I have.
And really, some of that can be remedied by building up the confidence of women. In almost all cases if you tell a man that his comment, actions, etc made you uncomfortable, he will apologize and stop.

Men are not monsters. We need to stop treating them as such.

Oh, safewords! One of the first things that many people believe is a “must” in any type of BDSM play. I am not disparaging of safewords, they cam be integral, but I truly believe that too many people in the BDSM community disregard the idea of plain language.

Plain language is just that – words mean words. If either partner says “stop” or “no more”, it means stop. Clearly, this wouldn’t work if you are engaging in any type of consensual non-consent (CNC), but it is particularly good for people who are new to these types of activities.

Many subs feel that they are somehow disappointing their Dom if they safeword (I am not an exception to this, even though logically I know it is not true. I still struggle to safeword). Some also feel that it is awkward to say a predefined safeword as it doesn’t feel natural in the moment – which some may argue is the point, that the safeword stands out. And that point is not wrong. I just want to suggest an alternative to the standard “you must ALWAYS have a safeword!” advice that is so often seen online.

I do believe there are some benefits to using plain language (perhaps in with a safeword as an added backup!) when starting out on the journey into BDSM. I have often found myself in relationships with vanilla men where I tried to introduce BDSM into our relationship, my partner was always afraid of hurting me. Which is an understandable concern, most people have been raised not to hurt others, and when they are not getting any inherent sexual enjoyment out of causing me pain it is difficult. Despite repeating over and over that I would use my safeword if things got to be too much, they all continued to struggle.

With my current husband, I moved to the idea of plain language and he felt much more comfortable. “Stop” and “Please no more” became my safewords. It was clear to him, there was no confusion.

Let me start by saying that I am fairly racially ambiguous, but I am clearly “not white.”
I also grew up, and live in, a very liberal, progressive part of the world so my experiences will be vastly different from what a person would experience in other parts of the world.

Racism exists. There is no denying that. However, I feel that too many people jump to racism as a conclusion with no evidence. Just because a person is an asshole/rude/mean to a person of colour or ethnic minority does not mean they are racist, maybe they are just an asshole.
I struggle to empathize with people who insist that racism is the cause of negative interactions without any other information to go on. Is there a pattern of shitty behaviour towards minorities? Maybe, but often in isolated incidents past behaviour is unknown…. so we cant just assume racism.
Is it overt? Does the person say something that is explicitly racist? No….? Then we can’t jump straight to racism.

Personally, I have never felt that I have been treated differently because of my race (and I look most like a very marginalized type of people – although, I am actually something different). I have had negative interactions with people, and later, while recounting these interactions to others, some people have suggested that they were racially motivated. I have never assumed that, if anything I just assume the other person is an asshole. I mean, it’s possible they are a racist asshole, but I can’t confirm that and it isn’t safe to just assume that.

I have had this conversation with a lot of people. Most people seem to agree with my perspective, yet, there continues to be a persistence in jumping to racial motivation. Emotionally, it is easier, it makes sense, racism allows people to blame others rather than look at their own behaviour.
I believe that if we look at each of these interaction critically, and determine which ones are actually racially motivated, it will be easier to stop or minimize racism. We would be able to deal with individuals, organizations, or policies that are racist rather than dealing with things that might be racist.

I am sure there have been times that I have been treated differently because of my ethnicity…. But that is not the reason I jump to. And I am glad that it’s not, if it was, it would be so easy to be angry at the world. To have little faith in humanity…