There are certain rules in our society which must - at all times - be obeyed. These rules are absolutely necessary to maintain the safety of all individuals involved.
Just in case someone doesn't understand these rules, let me lay them out for you.
If I missed any, please feel free to add them in the comments.
Rules for Women (of all races):
1. No short skirts. Men have urges, you know. And we must not expect them to control those urges. They're weak, and must be protected, because they simply cannot control themselves.
2. Careful with the makeup. Don't want to look like a slut. If you look like a slut, then... well, read the end of rule #1.
3. No smiling at strange men. They'll take that as a come-on, and anything that happens after that is your own fault, because you asked for it.
4. No ignoring strange men. If you do, they might assume you're just a cold-hearted bitch, and then you'll deserve whatever is coming to you.
5. No cleavage. See rule #1.
6. Don't dress like a prude - that creates an air of mystery, and then... well, see rule #1.
7. No going out after dark. If you do, you're just asking for it, you slut.
8. No going out in the daytime. If a man sees you in the light of day, it might turn him on, and then we're back to rule #1.
9. No high-heel shoes. We all know what THOSE are about. Better yet, don't wear shoes at all. Men don't like independent women. This is for your safety, remember.
10. Always understand that if you graduate college, it's because you're a "minority" (being female, and all) and your degree just isn't worth as much as a man's. Intelligent, independent women are scary to men, and that puts you in danger.
11. Never be assertive. Only men can be assertive. If you're assertive, you're just bitchy, and thus deserve whatever is coming to you.
Rules for Black people and People of Color:
1. No hoodies. You must wear a suit and tie at all times, even in your own home. If someone sees you through a window, they might assume you broke in and are stealing something, so wear a suit and tie, and be sure to have a photo of yourself with family or friends on the wall, so you can prove you actually live there. You should also keep a utility bill nearby also, and photo ID with your address on it. It is, after all, up to YOU to prove you live there, not your crazy-ass paranoid neighbor who called the cops even though you've lived there for seven years.
2. No going out after dark. If you do, someone might think you're looking for trouble. And I bet you are, aren't you??
3. No going out in the daytime. If someone sees you in the full light of day, they might be even more (rightly) afraid of you. Nothing more suspicious than a Black person (or person of color) going about their business.
4. No looking at White people. You know how scary you look. Besides, they deserve to live their lives without being made uncomfortable. Ever. Ever ever ever. Besides, if you look at a White person, you might come across as "too familiar" and that's scary too.
5. No ignoring White people, because then they might think you're some kinda radical, and then you're doubly scary.
6. Never ever ever, under any circumstances, use the word "Racism". That is strictly forbidden. That instantly converts you into a "reverse-racist", and makes you even scarier and more dangerous than you were five minutes ago. And for heaven's sake, whatever you do, do NOT talk about White Privilege. One of the foremost tenets of White Privilege is that you do not talk about White Privilege. It makes White people very uncomfortable, and I'm pretty sure that's against the law in at least thirty-two states.
7. No baseball caps, no hats of any kind. Makes you very very scary.
8. Smile. All the time. Even if someone is beating you up. Smile. But not too big of a smile, or it might look like you're snarling, and again, that's scary.
9. Do not ride elevators, because a White person might need to use one, and you scare them. Do not use the stairs, either, because that seems sneaky and very very scary.
10. Do not drive a nice or new car, because then people will think you're a drug dealer, and drug dealers are scary and bad and suspicious.
11. Do not drive an old car, because then people will think you don't work hard enough, and that's scary and suspicious.
12. Always remember that even if you graduate at the top of your class in college and paid your own way through, you are just an "affirmative action" student, unlike that White guy over there who was a legacy student with bad grades. He EARNED his degree. If you pretend that you're actually intelligent, that might upset some White man, and then you'll get what's coming to you.
13. Do not: Walk, eat, talk, drive, run, ride a bike, skate, or drink because those all scare White people.
Rules for Rich White Christian Conservative Men:
1. Oh, well, you know. Boys will be boys.
What, you thought there would actually be rules for them? Are you crazy?? They're the default human being! Everyone else is "other", and the rules are always for the "others".
Go ahead. Chase down a Black man and kill him. It will be his fault, because he will obviously have broken some of the rules. And even if it isn't his fault, the media will help you find a way to make sure it IS his fault.
Go ahead. Beat a woman until she's half dead. Rape her, even. The media will remind us of all the rules she broke. She didn't dress right, or she talked back, or she dared to leave her abuser. She was "bitchy" or "slutty" or whatever. You know it was all her fault.
DISCLAIMER: For anyone who hasn't figured it out yet (really??) this is sarcasm. Angry, frustrated sarcasm. And no, I don't believe these rules apply, but apparently some in the media (Geraldo Rivera and so many more out there - I'm looking at you) do. No, I don't hate White men. Not in the least. What I hate is hypocrisy, and double standards, and racism, and blaming victims. I hate it when people make excuses for racists and killers. I hate it when we are expected to dress, act and behave a certain way so that we don't "upset" those who might rape and/or kill. This puts the onus on the victim, and not on the offender, which is where it belongs.
One other note to add to this disclaimer: I do NOT think most men are too weak to control themselves. But when we blame the victim, we dehumanize many men by saying that those who commit these acts are not to blame. We give them an excuse not to behave like adults, and that hurts ALL of us. And it tells them we don't expect much - we infantilize them. "Aww, poor little guy just couldn't help himself." This smears every man who doesn't rape, who doesn't kill, who doesn't abuse others.
Too much of the media these days not only denies that institutionalized racism exists, they spend much of their time perpetuating it. Think back to Katrina, and White people "foraging" vs. Black people "looting". That's just one egregious example, but they do it every single blasted day.
And they spend so much time blaming the victims... Trayvon Martin "should have" worn this not that, said this not that, done this not that.
They push the stereotype of the "suspicious Black man". Trayvon Martin was Black, so he had to have been the aggressor, according to some in the media. There are plenty out there working to prove that case, even when the 911 tapes and so much other evidence paints an entirely different picture.
But George Zimmerman? The media is, conversely trying to protect him. To sweep under the rug the racism and violence of what he did. Oh, no... he didn't use a racial slur, even though many of us heard quite clearly what he said. Even though he pursued an innocent young man, it's somehow not his fault.
Excuse the killer, vilify the victim. It's standard operating procedure - unless, of course, the killer is Black.
Set fire to a Black man's home, and attack him? He shoots into the mob, one person dies... guess who goes to jail? Not the mob who set the fire.
It's a horrific double standard that goes unquestioned every single damned day, and I'm sick of it.
Stop blaming the victims, and start making rules for the entitled, the privileged, the "default humans".
No more rape. No more killing. No more racism.
And NO MORE EXCUSES.
Open your eyes, and just STOP IT.