When Will we Believe Women?

The man who attempted to kill US District Judge Esther Salas last week (the judge who will be presiding over Ghislaine Maxwell’s case) was a known predator. Judge Salas lost her only son. Her husband is in the hospital. Yet she is “lucky” because he didn’t kill her.

This man was "men's rights" activist and self-described "anti-feminist" lawyer. Author Andy Zeisler of Bitch Magazine said last week he was famous for harassing anyone who wrote about his frivolous lawsuits. Nothing happened. Yet everyone knew that what he was doing was wrong.

There was a time in my life where I thought I was going to be really hurt—if not killed—by someone who was harassing me. He was an ex-partner and clearly not thrilled that I had left him. He broke into my house. He stalked me. He threatened me. He had a history of mental illness and actively abused alcohol and drugs.

When I attempted to get a restraining order, the judge in Truckee, CA didn’t grant it because, and I quote, “He hasn’t hurt you yet.” Yeah, read that again. I couldn’t get a restraining order because I hadn’t been physically harmed YET.

I was so embarrassed having to tell my story in front of an entire courthouse. I was ashamed that I had chosen to be with this person for seven years. So I waited for him to leave the courtroom as I tried to collect myself. As I walked out, he was waiting for me in a hallway and jumped out, laughing at me. The bailiff came running up, and he fled. Then the bailiff went back into the courtroom and asked the judge what to do, and he said nothing, because there was no restraining order. He walked me to my car with his hand on his pistol the entire time.

When will we believe women? How many people have to be murdered before we hold men accountable for their threats? We need to stop hiding behind the notions that men’s aggression toward women is a normal part of being a man, or that women always do something to deserve it, or that freedom of speech means that you can harass and intimidate. It’s not. It’s unfair to women, to men, to all of us. We all deserve better.

#fuckingbitches

Words: Our CEO, Jen Gurecki
PC: @charlieshoemaker