Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Anniversaries, of a Sort

My first thought was "Wait, it's a few days too soon. It's not the 20th yet." April 20th. Waco. Oklahoma City. Columbine. (1)

We're hearing some, on the news, that this was a premeditated act, which kinda/sorta reinforces that idea. Someone had an axe to grind and an itchy trigger finger.

Then, there's what we're hearing about how the first shooting (in the dorm) was a "domestic" dispute. I was thinking that the University was to blame for minimizing what they saw as a "typical" boy-shooting-girl-who-rejected-him event; thinking the incident contained, they didn't see the second shooting coming. I have to confess that when I heard the words "domestic dispute," I leapt to a similar conclusion: "Man, oh man. Here it is again. A woman has the audacity to say 'no' to Mr. Magic Penis, so he blows her away." (2)

What sort of sad commentary on our society is THAT, I ask you, when we become numb to this scenario, when we see it as stereotypical? The Husband said that I may be putting too much of a feminist spin on this. I'll allow that possibility, but part of me wants to articulate how women have to learn a different set of rules – from how to stay safe when we're out alone after dark, how to stop an attacker, and rape spam, to how to dress and behave so as not to attract unwanted (male) attention. It's the never-ending background music. Men are the predators – women, the prey.

/pound head

Too many grey areas, too little answers. What the hell do I know writing about this?

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(1) This isn't entirely true. Technically, the Waco raid and Oklahoma City bombing were on April 19th, Columbine High School on April 20th; and my first thought was to try not to spit the bottled water I was drinking all over my keyboard (I called up the Yahoo! news headlines right when I returned from lunch).

(2) I hear that the gunman is of "Asian descent," so I leap to additional conclusions about his degree of testosterone poisoning, need for male dominance, etc. I'm just as susceptible to stereotyping as anyone.

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