Feminist Avengers
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Kyle Payne, you are not special

Kyle Payne is a rapist asshole.

If you're not familiar with his sordid little story, he's a sexual predator posing as a feminist. He's been a sexual assault advocate. He's presented at anti-porn conferences, and blogged about social issues, and basically he was just a picture-perfect little protector and lover of the womyns.

There are lots of dramatic little details about just how feminist he pretended to be and just exactly which invasive acts he performed in a specific recent instance.

You can google it if you want to get sucked down into the depths of that drama, but I don't recommend it, because it all misses the point.

The blogosphere is up in arms in an "Oh how heinous! He was pretending to be a feminist!" kind of way. On and on they go, about this specific rapist and how exactly he should be behaving now and telling him to stop using the word feminist and blah blah fucking blah.

Look folks, let me tell you a little secret.

Rapists pretend to be, and are, lots of things.

Some of these things are:
  • Feminists
  • Progressives
  • Anti-racists
  • Queer activists
  • Cops
  • Pastors
  • Doctors
  • Fathers
  • Brothers
  • Uncles
  • Boyfriends
  • Cousins
  • Best friends
  • Sister's boyfriends
  • The guy that cleans the carpets at your office
  • The guy that sells hot dogs on the corner
  • The guy in the nice suit
  • The boy next door
(For a complete list of things a rapist can be, please see the dictionary for any word that could ever possibly be applied to a human being.)


He is not special.

He is a rapist.

The disguise he used was feminist. Maybe he thought he was feminist.

I don't know and I don't fucking care because the point here people, the point is, he is a sexual predator who made a choice in at least one instance that we know of to sexually assault a woman.

Just like millions of other men do every day. I mean, fuck, throw a rock, hit a rapist, right?

Now, if we could tell the rapists from all the other dudes (I assume there are some), then we could be all shocked and say, ooh, no, not the "feminist" one! But seriously, have we not yet learned the lesson that we can't tell them apart?


Whew. Problem solved.

Oh wait, shit. If we can't tell them apart, how the hell are we supposed to protect ourselves?

Here's where it gets good people. I've got the answer.

Now, I will fight the instinct to say trust no men. *Fighting*

Ok, that sufficiently squashed for the time being, I'll give you my solution.

We trust men.

That's right, trust them.

I mean, not automatically right, they've gotta earn your trust like everyone else, and maybe they've gotta work a little harder because of the hundreds of years of oppression or whatever, but if they get past all your barriers, then you trust them.


Now comes the solution.

We must, at any and all signs of boundary-pushing, boundary-crossing, manipulation, abuse, assault, rape, misogyny of any sort, be willing to suspend trust immediately and indefinitely!!

In self-defense we call it the "Oh shit!" moment.

Trigger warning for the following...skip the oh shit!s if you think ptsd might sneak up on you.

Oh shit! He's attacking me!
Oh shit! My best friend is on top of me!
Oh shit! I said no and he responded "but i'm really horny right now!"
Oh shit! I'm wasted and I can't even process what's happening but my pants are coming off!

And it's hard, so fucking hard, to get through that and move right on to "So now I'm going to kill this rapist-piece-of-shit because it's kill or be raped, and I know which one I would prefer."

Because five minutes ago you were buying that rapist piece of shit popcorn at Hard Candy.
Five minutes ago he was tucking you into bed.
Five minutes ago he was walking you home to protect you FROM rape.
Five minutes ago he was introducing you to his friend Jessica, who you've thought was cute for a long time.

But we've gotta try. We've gotta tell ourselves every day, no matter how counter-socialization it might feel, that we trust him again today, but only until.

And sometimes it will be impossible, because our brain in all it's valiant effort will try to protect us from the truth that the one we loved and trusted is a rapist. And we won't be able to process the new facts (not friend, not loved one, RAPIST) quickly enough to rip that piece of shit's balls off.

But we've gotta try.

But please, people, Kyle Payne is not special because he used the word feminist.

He's just your average rapist.