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In my early teens, wild anger over sexist injustice made my personal feel political. It was not safe to talk about my experiences with the fuming tempers of men, but I could talk about the patriarchy and political rage. It gave me an outlet. It still does. My mom thinks I should take boxing lessons. He has turned on the news. It is twelve days after Dr. She and her family are still in hiding under constant threats on their lives, and 1C is watching Fox News in public, like, where people can see him doing it.
I hate Fox News. I hate 1C. Give the guy a break, my dad always told me, so I start to fill in the reasons why I should. Maybe he is doing research. Maybe he is the head of a think tank that strategizes for the left based off the language trends on Fox News. I look up the CEO. I am programmed.
I am sure I must be overreacting. I am sure I must be sensitive. Typical woman. Getting things all wrong. Lauren Patricia Besser. This man is not a journalist, or a progressive strategist, or the CEO of a major airline. Plain and Simple. I am the fifty-two percent of white women who voted for Trump.
I am the white woman who lied about Emmett Till and caused his horrific, young death. I am Cornerstore Caroline and Barbeque Becky. I am the woman who, hours ago, planned to off her shitty middle seat to a young man of color, so he could serve as a buffer between me and 1C. This is how a progressive white woman upholds the old white men in power, on planes and in government. I help plan marches. I talk to my friends about voting. I donate to bail-out campaigns and abortion funds. I am sitting between two men on a plane. One is sleeping. One is watching Fox News.
He is snickering every time Dr. Blasey Ford or Secretary Clinton come on the screen. The blood in my body is electrified with vengeance. I beg his eyes to meet my side eye. Interrupt me. Right now. Dominate my attention again, old man. Give it a shot.
I was there. I was holding up my hands on the steps of the Supreme Court. They said, I Believe Survivors.
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The day of Dr. People gathered in front of the Supreme Court. Some sat in the street and stopped traffic. I was just a teenager!
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Hands zip-tied behind her back, she collapsed at the waist in sobs. Her long, red hair was wet and grazing the cement as her body heaved from crying. A police officer held her arms. She rose back up, parallel with the cop, still shouting her truth. She survived. We shouted back. We believe you. We love you.
We know. Me too. Blasey Ford said she thought Brett Kavanaugh and Mark Judge might accidentally kill her during the assault. I thought the eight guys who drugged me and set up a camera to film my gang rape might accidently kill me too. They did not gang rape me. They did not kill me. I survived. The first time I thought they would accidently kill me was when I saw the camera being set up. I felt the drugs they gave me sinking in and I knew what was about to happen.
I had to leave the room.
It was an emergency. My head was getting heavy.
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I looked at the big red numbers on a digital clock alarm clock. I said to myself, You have three minutes to stand up. Stand up. Turn the knob.
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Walk out. If they tackle you, at least you tried. I did it. The ringleader followed me. He was touching me and begging me to stay. I had to drag my finger against the wall to know which way was up as I walked with him down the hallway toward the elevator.