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Sexual Abusers and Abusive Sexuality (14)

February 3, 2018

About the calls of “Whoa. Slow down. Innocent people-men might get hurt” (here’s the one that I just now read, by a reasonable Kathleen Parker): I’ve found, over the years, that a story from the African-American experience is applicable, again and again (I first read it as collected in Botkin’s Anthology of American Folklore—I’ll regularize the orthography; but as you read it try to hear the wonderful voice when it was told, probably deep in the night, or while taking a break from the hoeing or picking):

Old Sister Goose was sailing around the pond. Brother Fox was lying in the bushes on the bank. As she went around and around, maybe day-dreaming some, Sis Goose floated in closer and closer, until, Bro Fox leaped up and caught her! “I’ve got you now, Sister Goose, and I’m going to fry you up and pick your bones!” “Hold on there, Brother Fox, you let me go!” cried Old Sis Goose, wriggling in his paws. “You know I’ve got just as much right to float around on the pond as you’ve got to hide in those bushes. I want my case adjudicated in a court of law.” “Well now, that’s okay, Sister Goose. I’ll see you at the court house at noon next hearing day. So on the next hearing day Sister Goose arrived at the court house, just a few minutes late. She rushed inside and looked around. You’re probably guessing what she saw there, just waiting for her to arrive. The sheriff was a fox. The bailiff was a fox. Both of the attorneys were foxes. The judge was a fox, and all the jury were foxes too. And they were licking their lips.

So children, when all of the people in the court house are foxes, and you are just a common goose, there ain’t going to be much justice for us poor colored folks.

So let’s all try not to be foxes; but let’s not ask women to go on being patient about finding justice in an unjust culture that is rigged to serve dominating men. (I’ve also just now read Uma Thurman’s story of her patience, told to Maureen Dowd, and I think it’s instructive of the psychology.)

If we want the accused to receive due process, in whatever form that rightly takes, in the context of the alleged foolishness, misbehavior, informal assault, or crime, then men, in particular, had better step right up to unrig the many unjust systems in which they participate as protected beneficiaries.

As we unrig, some men, and some women, are going to be unjustly blamed, and penalized. I’m thinking that that’s the patriarchal fix that we’re all in.

Btw, how long do we get to be patient in the case of our Foxer-in-Chief?

Well, while we’re waiting, let’s not forget to breathe.

[Pages (1) and (13) of this episode.]

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