I Write Letters

A letter to a blogger that has long been sending me unsolicited e-mails of his posts.

Mr. Swanson,

Your recent post "Rapist Talk" left me angry and disgusted with you. While I understand your passion about ending the Occupation of Iraq, your casual use of a rapist raping an unmentioned woman was so misogynistic and hateful that I am no longer interested in receiving your posts via e-mail, which you started sending me without my consent when I was a guest blogger for Mike at Crooks and Liars several months ago.

A rapist was caught by a police officer, in flagrante delicto, and held up a hand calmly and authoritatively commanding: "Back off, officer, I'm going to need to be as careful getting out as I was careless getting in."

A congress member was caught voting to fund an illegal occupation for another full year, guaranteeing the deaths of hundreds of US troops and brain injury and PTSD for tens of thousands, not to mention the deaths, injury, and trauma to countless thousands of Iraqis, the further endangerment of us all, the destruction of our economy, more increases in the price of oil, and debt unimaginable for our great grandchildren (debt deep enough we could have made college permanently free to everyone). The congress member puffed out his chest and said "It's for the best, son, because some of the boys and girls who survive on the American side, even if they're psychotic and suicidal or have had a few knocks about the head, we're going to let them go to college. And we're upgrading the metal boxes for bringing back the other ones."

And the rapist and the congress member turned their eyes away and continued with what they were about.
While you may believe that you have made a passionate plea to end the war, what you have done is to purposely hurt any woman that has been a victim of sexual violence. Rape is not a joke, nor is it something to casually use to prove another point. It is a physical and psychological violation of the highest order, and leaves many women emotionally and physically damaged for the rest of their lives.

At least one in six women in the U.S. will be sexually assaulted in her lifetime, Mr. Swanson. In your first 40 words and last 20, you not only disrespected and humiliated at least 50 million women in the U.S. and literally billions worldwide, but you added to the pain of their attack(s) and also to the pain of the people who care about them. I am one of those people that personally cares about several women in my life that have been sexually assaulted. And I am someone who cares about every woman that has been sexually assaulted, anywhere in the world. You have not just offended and hurt me, you have enraged me with your callous disregard and obvious misogyny.

You are no ally of mine, in any way, and I would never help promote your posts, and would strongly advise other liberal allies of mine to avoid linking to your work in any way.

And feel free to ignore arguing about the importance of ending the war. First, your use of rape as an analogy tells me that you are not a man of any conviction or character, and are putting on a show of caring about anyone. Second, I have written many times about the War in my own ways, and have an understanding of all that is evil with war, especially this one.

Basically, your casual use of a rapist and his too-unimportant-to-even-mention victim was so angry, so demeaning and so lacking of human emotion, that I would strongly advise you give up writing altogether and move on to other pursuits. You are no ally of the anti-war movement, and your easy willingness to hurt and humiliate so many people in just a few words shows that you stand against everything progressives believe in and are on an even lower moral base than those who so callously sent U.S. troops into harm's way for despicable reasons.

William K. Wolfrum

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