You need to read this. You all need to read this. I will never, EVER, disbelieve a woman (cis or trans) who tells me she has been raped or abused. Because it happens to too damn many women. And that’s not okay.
Why does everyone beleive you, even though they don’t know you? Your blog description.Seems like an act of a revengeful princess ‘bitchface’.
This message motivated me to start writing more personal follow-ups to something I wrote that was a pretty big deal in lots of peoples lives. This gets long and full of my feelings. Sidenote: this girl is friends with the little sister of Nino, my rapist. His partner told me tonight that he hasn’t told any of his family, which was against the terms of our initial accountability process. Personally I’m really fucking angry that something that has dominated my life and interactions with my family has managed to be easily hidden from his, and I’m really a bit scared that teenage gals are being allowed to socialise with him while he refuses to accept what he has done. Gross.
I grew up around lots of stubborn women, and a very conservative mother who raised me with all the traditional narratives about rape and DV “fight tooth and nail if someone attacks you, go straight to the police, never let them get away with it”, as if it’s always that easy. And I always thought I would. As a teenager, I looked down on women who DIDN’T report their assaults, I thought they were weak and probably said things like that in discussion (fuck I hope I had the manners not to say it to their faces). I hadn’t been exposed to feminist thought and honestly, I didn’t know any better. I wanted to feel safe and powerful and the only way I knew how to do that was by agreeing and siding with men, and shit was never ever their fault, was it?
Getting to know better was a gradual process; starting uni and studying a little more, coming out as queer and seeing how people who didn’t conform to the gender binary were treated by institutions (like hospitals, the police, Centrelink etc), and big-time when I started sex work and was in all-female workplaces where people spoke intimately about the relationships with the men in their lives: fathers, husbands, boyfriends, ex’s, brothers. I heard stories about abuse (physical, sexual and psychological), dripped out over years of grooming and degradation. I learned how women are trained to accept violence and aggression as a part of male expressions of love: from boys pushing you in the playground in kindy meaning that they like you, to the pressure to be sexual in high school, to putting up with having sex in a relationship because ‘men have needs’.
When I started dating women and people who were raised as such, when I started to develop more mature friendships with women I started to hear more personal stories of assault. I can only think of a few CAFAAB people I know who haven’t been sexually assaulted or raped. It’s insidious.
You obviously already know a little bit about Nino, so maybe you can look up what it’s like for queer people accused of assault in the prison system, which is one of the initial reasons I didn’t take police action. My story also has credibility because in a way, these people do know me. We haven’t met, but they know what I look like, what annoys me, my job, my girlfriend, my friends, I’m a 3-D person to them, not just some random girl with a sob story (being a random girl with a sob story is ok too).
These people believe me for many reasons, but one of the main ones being that they themselves or a woman in their life (sister, mother, lover, friend) has been assaulted by someone they were dating, someone they were in love with (and I was very much in love with him at the time). Maybe they know someone who tried to get justice from an abusive partner and watched them struggle against bureaucracy and the boys club, not to mention their own destroyed self esteem.
I can quote statistics about DV at you, I can tell you about conviction rates and how abuse effects your ability to stand up for yourself, but you don’t really sypmathise until it happens in your life. Honestly, the main reason why most of these people believe me is that they remember what it was like. They remember when they were assaulted and told someone and got it dismissed, or told it was their own fault, and how much that hurt. People believe me because they made a choice at some point in their life to ALWAYS believe a woman if she says she is accused of rape, because it’s probably true and the consequences of believing otherwise are pretty fucking dire.
uh, Oz and Nino, I have your IP adress tracked and I know how often and when you look here. I mean you’ve looked at my tumblr nearly a hundred times this week alone! Why u so obsessed with me?
I know when you’ve been on my ask page and asking me nasty things. I know when you’ve been looking me up on your phone (you have an android still, right Oz?). I know when your little sister reads my blog (still on your mothers computer and you should really update your version of Explorer btw). You look PATHETIC.
Oh, you’ve also viewed my screencaps from that little girl at least 5 times so far, and there’s still another two hours of pageviews to catch up on. So it’s pretty clear you put her up to it, or at least are still telling some bullshit sob story to your families and friends, not admitting to them what you have to me and the people involved in your accountability process.
Do you feel like a big man now, encouraging someone who looks to be barely in their late teens to harass and insult me? I always knew the two of you were anti-woman, anti-sex work misogynistic knobs but this is almost as low as the time you tried to steal money from my mother to pay off your dealer but then she lent it to you anyway.
Give up. I’m smarter than the two of you, and you are only making it worse for yourselves. Oh, and from the amount you look at my GPOYs it’s really obvious that you are both still wildly attracted to me. I mean you look at that tag EVERY DAY. Flattering, but creepy.
This is what creepy stalkers do. I’m so proud of my brave friend for being so fucking unapologetic about calling these fuckers out so openly.
wow. There is some serious victim-blaming and whorephobia going on here. I do not even know how to deal.
This is why so many women do not talk about their abuse. This is why so many sex workers do not talk about sex work. No one believes us when we tell the truth about our experience because of the work we do.
TRIGGERS: sexual assault and some serious rape apologism
I have an announcement to make. Actually, we should all be in the habit of talking about this every few months at least until a day comes when he is finally accountable, and until our communities do not harbor attitudes that enable this behavior.
Kael T. Block, the founder and photographer of the XX Boys project, is a serial rapist who fled the United States for France in order to avoid prosecution. Based on the information available online, he has sexually assaulted multiple women in the San Francisco Bay Area and at least one in Paris and probably more.
When the details of his behavior became public, all sorts of excuses went flying. He said the survivor is allowed to feel raped, but that doesn’t mean he raped her. His friends said he’s just a dominant who hasn’t mastered safewords, no big deal! Those silly girls are just jealous, mentally unstable, and attention-seeking! And, worst of all, hey, he’s a trans man, not like those other men!
Well thankfully, not everyone bought that. Do watch this video, it is amazing:
I would love to be able to read or see his entire talk, but it has never been made available.
XX Boys currently has 5,984 fans on Facebook. Unsurprisingly, anyone who mentions the fact that it’s run by a rapist has their comments deleted and is blocked from commenting the Wall. This isn’t even Roman Polanski - the guy takes pinup pictures of trans guys. That is all, and apparently he is so vital to the world that the people he has raped have been told to shut up for the good of “the community.”
Do not support this piece of shit, and do not support the transphobic idea that trans men are harmless, elfin dudes who cannot possibly take part in male domination and commit abuse or assault.
Oh and by the way, Lynee Breedlove of Tribe 8 is one of his staunchest defenders. Really. Let’s think before we celebrate queer “heroes” who so quickly go from writing songs about castrating rapists to defending and supporting fellow trans and “feminist” rapists.
More information, including survivor accounts here:
Signal boosting! I’m still surprised by how few people in Australia queer scene know about Kael’s history as a rapist - but HEAPS of Oz queers know about his art. Just goes to show, queers can be complicit in suppressing information to protect abusers as much as anyone can!
In addition to being a really sweet and talented guy, Dustin is someone who’s demonstrated in his art that he understands and appreciates the subtleties and nuances of the JokerxHarley relationship.
This gorgeous piece of art is an obvious homage and reference to the last page of Mad Love, flipping the places of Joker and Harley, Joker taking central position in the image with Harley symbolically present through the rose she has sent him for his convalesence.
Knowing the dynamics of Batman/Joker/Harley it’s easy to imagine the context - this is after one of the Joker’s run-ins with the Bat - run-ins that often end with the Joker physically very much the worse for wear. There’s a perverse satisfaction in that for the Joker - he’s a masochist as much as he is a sadist and engages in his crimes with deliberate intent to provoke the Batman’s rage, knowing full well the potential consequences upon his person. Whilst on one level he may not “succeed” once Batman has stopped him once again, he very much is triumphant on another - especially if he’s laid up like this. He’s driven the Bat to the edge again, forced a compromise in the Batman’s ethics.
To my eyes, him smiling upon the rose that Harley has sent him is him reflecting on his bizarre, twisted life with a great deal of contentment. That rose is intended to be a comfort to him - and it reminds him just as much as his physical injuries do of where he is and why - in a way, that rose underscores his relationship with Batman and emphasises the life he has is one of his own making, including Harley who stays by his side through it all.
On another level, a very subliminal, subconscious one, I think the rose also serves as an anchor in his very chaotic life. The Joker is a monster who cannot process or experience emotion like ordinary people, but his creation of Harley Quinn does reflect a perverse sort of loneliness. And after a lifetime of absolute isolation, to have one person to share it with him, and express that in so simple a gesture as a single rose by his sickbed, would be a powerful experience. Not one dealt with without a great deal of conflict and likely resentment, but something that touches the Joker just lightly on that black little heart of his, even if it manifests more as grotesque delight at the wickedness he has done Harley in driving her mad and making her his companion.
The charge that Dustin would support domestic violence is a gross simplification of what he conveys in his art. To a one and whatever the subject matter, his art is non-exploitative and non-fetishising and actually focuses more on expressing subtler intricacies and macabre beauties of the characters he depicts, Joker and Harley being amongst them.
Edit: I haven’t actually asked Duss, so it IS entirely possible that Joker is laid-up after Harley’s given him a whuppin’, as she will do when sufficiently provoked. I think there remains a beautiful (and twisted - always twisted) symmetry there - as with Mad Love the rose symbolises the possibility, always, of starting over and over again - leaving the past absolutely behind and plowing on with it. It’s warped and sick but it’s meant to be.
I am overwhelmed and humbled by the support coming into my inbox. I was REALLY not expecting this to blow up like it did, but I can’t say I’m upset that it happened. I am going to reply to everything you have sent, but here is an FAQ about some of the more ~sensitive matters that I will only answer once.
I have chosen not to go to the police because both my abuser and I belong to minority groups the police doesn’t treat very well, to put it mildly. Heck, even nice white middle class hetrosexual cis women get treated like shit by the police when they are trying to get justice for abuse. I don’t believe in using the police. If you’ve had only positive experiences with them then good for you, but please realise not everyone is in your position. I was upset that my community did not respond at the time but there is no fucking way I was going to let him take my ~*~morals~*~ from me.
I am aware I have immense privelige in having the choice to not use state institutions, and I am not judging anyone who does use them, work with or for them.
He is not a teenager or a child, he is 21. He was 20 when he raped and assaulted me.
I do not want a facebook page set up about him, or at least I’ve chosen not to do it. I don’t have a fb account but many people close to me do and honestly I’m a bit iffy about how that corporation treats sexual assault (remember all the pro-rape pages they left up?) so yeah.
I made this post for the sole purpose of future employers, lovers and friends googling his name and reading that. That’s the reason some minor personal details are in there too. I don’t know about you guys, but I’m a big creeper who googles everyone. If I have to explain what he did to me to everyone I live with and am intimate with for the rest of my life, he can too.
I’m enjoying a lovely valentines day with a lover in the new, safer life I have built for myself today, so if you have sent me a non-anon message of support be sure I have read it and will reply to it as soon as I possibly can. Thankyou so much to everyone who’s shown support, in doing so you have put yourself at risk of backlash and thankyou for feeling that survivor justice is more important than being well-liked.
One of the worst things (among many, many terrible things) about this is how he explicitly uses a woman’s past suicide attempts as a justification for trying to kill her. Additionally:
He uses the fact that he “wasn’t arrested” for trying to kill his girlfriend as evidence that he should be absolved.
He says that trying to kill his girlfriend “struck many people as an act of violence against a woman.” I’m sorry that you feel like my trying to kill you was violent.
“I think we can stipulate that maybe that behavior was abusive. Forget the maybe, we can stipulate that it was abusive.”
“Spaces that are women-centered should perhaps be spaces where I’m not.” Perhaps? It took this kind of martyring for a dude with a PhD to understand that he should wait til he’s invited to start occupying women’s spaces? What the fuck?
MMM explained how men like Hugo decide they get to frame women’s experience and arguments on their own terms. Why are all these f*eminists, and Schwyzer himself, acting like this is only about the tried-to-kill-my-girlfriend-thing? It’s about a whooole lot more than that (as if that’s not enough!)
As much as I already reject that “bumper sticker” that saysfeminism is the radical idea that women are people, I can’t even fucking believe the nerve of a guy who hijacks that already liberal, watered-down, ineffective bullshit in order to make it possessed by men. “Feminism is the radical idea that women and men are people.” That is by no account what feminism is. Feminism takes as a given that men and women are people. Feminism does not end with the assertion that men and women are people. That would be, like, all of liberal political thought.The foundation for feminist theory, as we’ve historicized and canonized it anyway, was as an intervention that asserted historical subjectivity of women. This guy constantly challengesthis material, historical, and lived subjectivities of women as somehow antithetical to feminism. Because feminism should be as much about men as it is about women. Feminism should let men be subjects. That makes sense. And, you know, for a dude that is paid to give lectures about constructions of gender, he sure is violently, rigidly, dogmatically invested in that binary, isn’t he? Women and men are people, but that’s it.
This motherfucker doesn’t know anything about feminism. “A snake in the Feminist Garden of Eden, and we’re gonna cut the head off the snake.” So, like, feminists want to preempt the serpent to reverse original sin so that they can chill in the Adam’s patriarchy forever? I’m pretty sure the embrace of feminine sacrifice/acceptance of ejection from the garden is likeessential feminist theory. This son of a bitch needs to go back to Judy Chicago and get off my lawn.
He decided that his unconscious girlfriend—whose business he laid all out on the street, including coerced sex with a dealer, it seems, which doesn’t appear to bother him—-would be better off dead. He didn’t consult her. He did make sure we knew about the sex they had. As he makes sure that he was voted hottest professor somewhere, somehow, which is incredibly grotesque in a guy who used to fuck his students. Bragging about any of these things doesn’t indicate he’s reformed: it says to me that he wants us to know how much he gave up to be a feminist (who talks over feminists and isn’t exactly eager to listen to us at all) and we better keep that in mind. The implication is that if we don’t appreciate his awesome sacrifices, then he’ll just take his over-exposed balls and go home. Telling people in great details about the depths he descended to doesn’t impress me. It reminds me of how conservatives always claim they used to be liberal before they saw the light. He likes telling those details.
"… [I]s it really so awful if people decide that they “hate” Hugo Schwyzer for what he’s done? Anger is OK but hate is always bad? “Hate speech” is pejorative language directed at a vulnerable group or category of people without regard to their characteristics or actions as individuals. That has nothing to do with somebody deciding that they hate Hugo Schwyzer. And it’s not up to you to make a decision that what he’s done isn’t bad enough to merit people’s hatred"
"[…] we need to center survivors. I also generally am leery of the idea that a community should forgive someone just because they have changed. My own sense is that when a community shows that protecting and supporting a survivor is their priority, it not only does the right thing by standing behind the survivor, it also makes it easier for abusers who want to change to do so."
This really calls to mind some of the stuff that happens in the queer community… too much eternal excusing of abusers and predators just because they’re queer… meanwhile their survivors get doubted. Stinks.
One thing I’ve seen over and over is abusers using their own abusive history as a way to manipulate their new partners. It especially tends to work on either women who have no education on the dynamics of abuse and/or, horribly enough, women who have already been abused. They will explain away restraining orders, criminal histories, exes who won’t talk to them, having lost custody of their children (when that actually happens, which is pretty rare), etc. by saying that either:
1. My ex was a horrible mean person who did all these terrible things just to hurt me for no reason, and now my life is ruined, poor me.
2. Yes, I made some terrible “mistakes,” but I have learned so much and am a Brand New Man now, so wise, so self-aware.