I once slapped a young man for being tremendously offensive, who was my age, my height and roughly my build, and who I assumed was my strength as well. Big mistake. He was much stronger. In seconds, he had me pinned down on my back on a table, too weedy to fight back or to defend myself. All I could do was scream, until my boyfriend came running in and wrestled him off me. I probably shouldn’t have slapped him, but it made me realise that men, generally, are physically stronger than women.
Lucky me, this has been my only tiny experience of violence, and I had someone nearby strong enough to haul this fellow off, unlike the women who Dominique Strauss-Kahn has been having sex with in a “rougher than average way”. What a hideously depressing case. DSK is only 5ft 9in, but looks a rather hulking creature. The women don’t have a hope in hell against him and his type. He has money and strength, they have neither. He can “impale”, sodomise, and do as he pleases to them, and think he’s having a “festive afternoon” with a “party atmosphere,” and the women are there for pleasure.
“You’re going into a very dark world here, of sexual hatred,” says Fielding. Yes I am, because that dark world isn’t getting any smaller. Not so long ago, I knew of four female acquaintances at once who were being bashed around by men. If I personally knew four, how many more must there have been, and still are, just in this country? And will be, now that refuges are being closed so drastically, we’re almost back to the 1970s.
I suspect we have our own DSKs over here, “partying” roughly with women, or bullying them into doing something that hurts, or that they loathed, but hadn’t the physical strength to refuse. I once asked a hard-nosed hack why some men treat women like this. “Because they can,” said she. How on earth do we make sure that that they can not? Weaker and poorer does not mean worth less.