Posted originally on November 18, 2016, at Girl w/ Pen. This week, we are thinking about attention to what is said and done, and preparing for Women’s Equality Day on August 26.
This is sex as political football. Sometimes the games have the veneer of lightness, like a game you play after Thanksgiving dinner. Today, though, I was writing about the use of rape as tool of war.
In 1996 the International War Crimes Tribunal focused on rape in the Bosnian war, and prosecuted people involved. Discussion of one of those prosecutions was here, and this quotation gripped me:
In a reply to his accusers, Mr. Mejakic, who along with others under indictment remains safely in Serb territory, described Ms. Cigelj as being old and unattractive; he added that he wouldn’t have leaned his bicycle against her, much less raped her.
And then I looked at this, from 20 years later, last month (October 2016):
Donald Trump on Thursday adamantly denied claims he forced himself on a People Magazine journalist more than a decade ago, responding to her accusation of sexual assault by saying, “Look at her … I don’t think so.”
That’s today’s brief reflection on normalization, 1996-2016.