So, two sets of honorees this week distinct, but related.
First, to President Obama and Valerie Jarrett, for the White House anti-sexual assault initiative. OK, this type of criminal and social ill is typically the pervue of local government (10th Amendment and all that), which is what makes colleges a good starting point (federal money = dance the White House’s way, plus the college educated set is supposed to constitute the nucleus of community leadership). However, the right of individuals to control what happens to their bodies including making uncoerced decisions about sexual activity is a sadly pervasive issue. Even sadder when you think through the roots of it—the misconceptions of what sex is and what it is about, about intimacy between two people and how it evolves, how you achieve it with another person, about how sometimes, you don’t always get what you want. Typically, men are the aggressors and women the victims, but not always. And, actually, I think the worst part of “rape” in our culture in all of its forms, unquestionable or ambiguous as it can be is the role that women play in perpetuating it and don’t play in stopping it. Women raise males, it’s important to raise them into men. Women condemn the innocent (if not innocuous) behaviors of other women, and perpetuate myths and gossips. For a day when we are nicer to each other as a starting point.
Second, to the coalition of, like, thirty-nine countries that are meeting with Syrian leadership to try and talk some sense into their recognized government. Your country is flying apart = you’re doing something wrong. It’s time to start listening.