Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Dear feminism: Rihanna does not belong to you

Apparently the best way to deal with domestic violence is to slam survivors of domestic violence.

Charities accuse Rihanna of 'sanctioning' violence, says the Independent.

Which charities, you ask? Wifebeaters Anonymous? The Royal Society for the Propagation of Violence Against Women? 
Erin Pizzey, the campaigner who pioneered aid for abused women by setting up Britain's first refuge centre for victims, added: "This sends out a very dangerous message to teenagers that roller-coaster relationships with violence-prone personalities are edgy and exciting. They're not. The relationship is toxic and unhealthy. Both are in need of help and that is the message that young people should be receiving."
Oh great. Nice work, feminism: demanding that a domestic violence survivor becomes the figurehead for anti-violence efforts, and never strays from the script, never says anything which betrays ambiguous or protective feelings towards her abuser (you know, like abuse survivors frequently do, because being abused by someone who is supposed to love you is, apart from everything else, a colossal mind-fuck, and an occasion for potentially catastrophic cognitive dissonance?) - never, in fact, says anything which might suggest that she is a whole and complex person rather than the Violence Is Bad Automaton 2012.

Rule one of Not Being Awful: when a person has been through something traumatic, YOU DO NOT GET TO TELL HER HOW TO DEAL WITH IT. Your question is, 'What do you need?' It is 'Is there anything I can do to help?' It is not, it is really fucking not, 'This is what you must do, for the good of yourself and the thousands of other people who you now have responsibility for because I said so, or you are EVIL.'

Dear everyone in the world: back the fuck off Rihanna.


  1. Couldn't agree more with the sentiment of your post, although (I can't link to the Independent article, so don't know what charities are doing this), Erin Pizzey, is definitely not a feminist. She writes articles for the Daily Male, blaming feminism for everything from the breakdown of the family to, oh, the bombing of Hiroshima (possibly) and three-legged dogs (probably).

  2. Cripes - I think I just assumed "domestic violence shelter pioneer" equalled "feminist", which was pretty lazy - a cursory google might have been a good plan but I was too angry to do anything other than rant! Thanks for reading & improving :-)