Where does personal responsibility fit into the discussion of victim blame, slut shaming, and the like? As a human, one does not deserve to be raped, abused, or mishandled in any way, yet if one chooses to get stupid drunk at a frat party…, or stays in an abusive relationship…, or knowingly takes the narcotic…etc.? (this is actually a snippet of a much larger thought I’ve mulled for years now. But because I struggle to formulate words of non-fiction, I haven’t developed it into anything)
How or where do the children fit in to this? At what age is one expected to take responsibility for their actions, their decisions, and the consequences there of?
Once on that train of thought, I pull into the “can I sleep with myself if I think of rape / abuse / etc. as a ‘consequence of poor personal choices’?” station. Which tends to be a dark and often desolate place. Especially at night…or right after I’ve over heard the news. Isn’t this just another form of shaming and blaming the victim?
There’s another station along this route, the “how do I justify my feelings about the death penalty?” It’s not as chilling as the other stop, but it’s just as dark. When I stop here, I’m left to listen as one part of me asks “is it right that we chose who deserves to die?”, while another part of me adamantly screams, “anyone who murders should themselves be murdered.” The one side counters with, “but what about cases of self-defense, or the unjust way innocent people are judged guilty based on the skimpiest of evidence just because they’re black / female / poor?” I’m never at that station long enough to hear who wins.
My head’s starting to hurt.