Stuff I Should Not Do In The Morning: Read articles about how men’s rights groups are getting pissed because women’s rights groups are going to Haiti to offer aid to vulnerable women.
Ah, lovely. I’m seeing red and it’s not even noon yet.
Leaving aside that apparently the notion of "aiding women" has been conflated in these people’s minds as "lesbian paratroopers with pink machine guns will be kicking away the hands of dying men while women are showered with maxi-pads, chocolate, and aromatherapy candles," leaving aside various and sundry studies by various humanitarian organizations that you tend to get the biggest economic bang for your buck by giving money to mothers and wives rather than using the "head of the household" model, leaving aside that pregnant women need highly specific care in the aftermath of disasters or that apparently some of these gentlemen who are so enraged do not realize that when women’s organizations say that they are providing "hygiene supplies" they do not mean wet-wipes…*
I just have one teeny tiny point to make.
Rape was made a criminal act in Haiti in 2005.
Apparently other people–by which I mean Kevin–knew this already. Apparently I was oblivious as I frequently am, or blotted it out in sheer dismay. 200…5. God’s balls, world.
And they wonder why I don’t believe in an omnipotent benevolent god.
It was a huge problem when the government was WORKING. The statistics come in the sort of numbers that rapidly become so absurd that they no longer mean anything, because I think a lot of us cannot even begin to comprehend a system failing that badly.
If anybody on earth doesn’t think that setting up women’s shelters to provide a place where women aren’t going to be at risk of violence–and let’s not be euphemistic, by "violence" I pretty much mean "gang-raped"–in a country that had a bigass serious violence-against-women problem BEFORE it was a disaster zone–is a humanitarian no-brainer…
Well, those people exist and are on the internet, god knows. But anyway.
Since outrage is well and good but action is better, I just donated money. Congratulations, angry male rights bloggers–you made me give more money to women in an effort to counteract your pure stupidity.
ETA: Link to V-Day, where I donated (also has links to Doctors Without Borders and Partners in Health)
Highly recommended: Charity Navigator (includes links to various highly rated relief organizations and their specific focus–there are a number of organizations working with Haitian women. I picked one more or less at random that already had a battered women’s shelter on the ground, since they say you should try to donate to groups that already have a history in the area, as they’re much better at getting the aid out.)
(Also, if anybody says "but men can be raped too!" in that tone that indicates you think it is somehow a trump card in this discussion, and then sits there like a wide-eyed entitled puppy expecting to be petted, I will…well, I will sigh heavily and carefully not scream "OH MY GOD HOW DO THESE PEOPLE NOT REALIZE HOW THEY SOUND?!" and then choke that thought off and snarl at the ceiling. And instead I will say, very gently, that this is not about you right now, and yes, men getting raped is a horrible problem, and so is AIDS and global warming and the bloody white blindness in bunnies, but maybe you should think about what you just said and why women, who are getting raped in numbers so much vaster than men and furthermore expecting it to happen as just part of the way the world works, would maybe make us just a tad edgy. So maybe we could dispense with that bit, since you now know how it will all go down, and it’ll save time and energy for everybody.
And I will even go so far as to say that if you can find a reputable charity setting up shelters where men can go to avoid being gang-raped, I will cheerfully match my donation to the Haitian women’s shelter to it.)
*The outrage of a gentlemen at "Men’s News Daily" that apparently men and boys didn’t deserve "hygiene supplies" gave me one of the only laughs in this whole business. Oh, honey….If you really really want to distribute tampons to the poor tampon-less men of Haiti, I will buy you a case out of my own pocket.