Victoria Brownworth Profile picture
Oct 9, 2018 20 tweets 5 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
I don't think men really understand how different it is to be a woman out in the world and how quickly things can turn dangerous.
When I was living in New Orleans, I was walking home from work one night. It was fall--dark early & foggy.
A man came out of the fog toward me.
He said hi, I said hi.
As he started to pass me, he asked me if I had the time.
I looked at my watch, looked up, he had a gun pointed at me.
He hit me so fast I wasn't able to steel myself.
I fell to the ground.
He said, "I could rape you right now, but I don't have time."
He wanted my money.
I had the grocery money for the entire house (I lived with 3 other people) in my purse.
He took it and disappeared into the fog.
The whole thing was maybe ten minutes, start to finish.
I was shaking so hard I could hardly get up.
My head was bleeding.
I got home and one of my roommates came out of the kitchen with a beer and dropped it when she saw me bleeding all over.
The police actually said I was lucky.
"Could have been so much worse."
When these things happen, you still have to go out into the world the next day.
A few years later I was living up North again and sharing an apartment with a friend from college. She'd been in a band for years and was selling one of her guitars on Craig's List. I had a wild work schedule and wasn't home that much. A guy came to see the guitar.
He looked at it, played it. Everything seemed cool. They shared a cup of coffee. Then he pulled out a gun, put it to her head, told her she could give him the guitar & anything else he wanted or he could rape & shoot her. He looted our apartment & locked her in the closet.
A year later I was teaching pregnant teens in North Philly. For three days after the Easter holiday one of my students didn't show up. When she did, she was obviously upset and asked to talk to me at lunch. We went into an empty classroom and she started crying--wailing.
Her boyfriend had found her sitting with a male cousin on stoop near her house & had dragged her away by her hair, shoved her into his car & kept her at gunpoint for 3 days until he was convinced she didn't have sex with her cousin (her cousin!!). He had raped her repeatedly.
She was 16yrs old and 6mos pregnant.
She said he would be waiting for her after class and could I help her.
We called police,but she was afraid he would hurt her more, so she gave the report, but wouldn't file a complaint.
She moved in with him.
The class ended 4wks later.
I have so many stories like this. My own and those of my friends. The student in my advanced writing class who cornered me after class. The social worker friend whose client beat her up in her office after their session because he didn't like something she had asked him.
I was having drinks with on the roof of another reporter's apartment building one gorgeous spring night in NYC and we were having a fantastic time until he tried to kiss me and I reminded him I was a lesbian and he said, "Maybe a little bi?" and I said no, not at all.
I tried to joke with him because that is what we learn to do, but he got angry and he shoved me a little and I said, "don't be like that" and he threatened to throw me off the roof. I can still see how beautiful the view was and feel the air on my face and my heart pounding.
He held me there, against the brick walled edge of the roof. Then he let me go with a little laugh and said he wasn't serious. And I had to be nice and go along with that until I could get off the roof and away from him.

And then I had to work with him for two more years.
And this is how it is for us. A guy running up to me, grabbing my breasts on the street one night in London. A man grabbing an older friend in a department store. A guy grabbing a younger relative on the street of a different foreign city. Over & over the same story for us.
I just want you to think about how it would be if other men came up to you and threatened you out of nowhere. If you were just having a pleasant after-work drink and it turned terrifying. If you thought the person you loved was gentle and then he tried to kill you.
Only a tiny percentage of violence against women is perpetrated by other women. Miniscule, in fact. Men are the greatest threat to women. Which is why when you say #NotAllMen we say, "how do we know?"
Trump says it's a scary time to be a boy/man--because a woman you sexually assaulted might decide she's lived with the memory long enough. But there has never been a time in history that HASN'T been scary for women and girls. Not one day without a rape or murder of females.
Margaret Atwood wrote: "Men's greatest fear is that women will laugh at them. Women's greatest fear is that men will kill them."

That is the threat we live with every day.
And you dare to call us snowflakes.
We are the bravest people on earth.
The things women learn to live with.

Like the President of the United States apologizing not to the 15yr old girl who was sexually assaulted who he mocked and led cheers against, but the man who sexually assaulted her who will now determine the lives of women for 30yrs.
The president who was elected even after he admitted he "grabbed women by the p***y." Who's been accused of sexually assaulting a dozen women.

It's a scary time to be female, because the POTUS just declared it open season on women.

So please--#VOTE.

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Victoria Brownworth

Victoria Brownworth Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @VABVOX

Oct 4, 2018
The majority of the working class in America is women and POC.
And white men as a group haven't voted majority Democrat since 1964--they stopped after LBJ signed the the #VRA.
Flip the narrative and start listening to the ACTUAL working class--the rest of us.
Stop centering white men for everything.
Stop claiming only white men can save us from the damage white men did to us.
Women are the working class--my investigation here:…
.@matthewstoller is very worried about white men, but it's really women of all races who are facing the worst effects of economic and social stresses.
My investigation here:…
Read 5 tweets
Oct 2, 2018
The relentlessness of passing over superb women with strong credentials & election histories in favor of whatever man is a headline at a moment is exhausting.

Two months ago it was Avenatti. Now it's O'Rourke.

Bypassing the majority of Americans--women--is a national disgrace.
O'Rourke is fine. He is not, Harris, Gillibrand or Klobuchar.

▪Gillibrand is Congress' leader on women's rights & sexual assault victims.
▪Harris set NN2018 on fire with her speeches reclaiming identity politics.
▪ Klobuchar highlighted #Kavanaugh's unfitness for SCOTUS.
Americans MUST stop looking past women to find some man, any man to supplant them.

It took THIRTY YEARS of incredibly hard work for @HillaryClinton to get to run for POTUS. The rules for women are so different. No one sees a woman give a single speech and says "president!"
Read 16 tweets
Oct 1, 2018
I lived in NOLA right after college.
I drank most every day, as did everyone I knew.
We were all in the domestic Peace Corps, all in our early 20s, all hardworking activists with stressful work.
We drank too much at Mardi Gras, New Year's.
It's absurd to claim #Kavanaugh didn't.
Those of us who've had alcoholics in our lives--like Klobuchar--tend to be careful about alcohol because we've been damaged by the drunks in our lives. I'm a control freak, so never liked being drunk, but lots of my friends did. What IS true, is most 20somethings drink to excess.
This new tack from the #GOP to dismiss #Kavanaugh's alcoholic drinking--& I am not saying he was/is an alcoholic, but he certainly drank like one--is just wrong. It undermines their own credibility and ignores reality: statistically the vast majority of teens/20s get drunk OFTEN.
Read 6 tweets
Sep 29, 2018
Let's talk about sex, #Kavanaugh & Venn diagram overlap of male entitlement.

I've written a lot about sex in various contexts. In the late 80s/early 90s I also gave safe sex workshops back when folks my age were dying 24/7 from #AIDS. My 1st book was on juvenile prostitution.
Most of us know consensual and non-consensual sex differ. The entirety of #Kavanaugh's defense and his defenders' outrage is predicated on the presumption that no teenaged boy knows what consent is.


Some, like their adult counterparts, don't care.

This is key.
Since #MeToo we've seen egregious serial rapists like #BillCosby and #HarveyWeinstein exposed & attempts made to prosecute them.

But there are "lesser" sexual assaults we've given a lighter hand to: Matt Lauer, Charlie Rose, Mark Halperin, Louis CK--too many to list.
Read 28 tweets
Sep 27, 2018
I gotta tell you, folks, I have been so sick for the past 2wks, I have really been scared.

Sept 22 House GOP passed their new cuts to Social Security Medicaid and Medicare out of committee. $1.2T in cuts.

That's the safety net.

I've always hoped I could fall there. No more.
I had to call my bestie today to have her come up and stay with me while The Wife is teaching.

Even with the oxygen, hard to breathe.

I had to cancel interviews for tomorrow, a radio appearance for Friday.

Chronic illness like #cancer is incapacitating at times.
We need to do better for sick and #disabled Americans.

It is so hard to work and be sick.

Never getting better sick.
Read 4 tweets
Sep 23, 2018
FFS. @onthemedia just aired a long exchange of @JHockenberry's editor explaining JH couldn't really do damage to the women he sexually harassed since he's in a wheelchair!

Using #disability to excuse sexual harassment FOR WHICH JH WAS FIRED is outrageous. I'll explain why.
First, like @JHockenberry, I am also paralyzed and in a wheelchair. And myriad studies have shown women who are #disabled are more likely to be sexually harassed and assaulted than non-disabled women. There is, in fact, also, an entire porn culture around women in wheelchairs.
There is also a long, extended discourse about how #disabled men deserve/need sexual releases. (There is no such discourse about disabled women.) Hockenberry's editor claimed, while laughing, "he can't exactly leap up & grab someone."

Read 14 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Don't want to be a Premium member but still want to support us?

Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal

Or Donate anonymously using crypto!


0xfe58350B80634f60Fa6Dc149a72b4DFbc17D341E copy


3ATGMxNzCUFzxpMCHL5sWSt4DVtS8UqXpi copy

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!