You Don’t Deserve This: A Public Service Announcement

rapead-722061One in 6 of us (men) has experienced abusive sexual experiences before age 18. Taken as a population, 10% of all victims of sexual assault, sexual abuse, and rape are male. These statistics are most likely underreported because the victim may not have felt assaulted, or had issues of fear, shame, and embarrassment around the incident, or they did not feel empowered to speak up. Because some of these men are gay/bisexual, or the more clinical Men who have Sex with Men (MSMs), they will believe that they deserved it, but Ya Brista is here to say that NO ONE DESERVES THIS!!! Perhaps this goes without saying to some, but our world is replete with examples that prove the message is worth reiterating.

Recently, I watched a porn video from one of my favorite studios. In the video, this young brotha, who was all of 5’-4” and 110 pounds, was getting gutted by 12 inches of dick from a man who seemed almost a foot taller. As the fucking started, I was ready, dick in hand, his moans and groans adding to the excitement of the video. Somewhere during the course of the video, the sound of his moans and groans changed to my ear, becoming less about passion and more about endurance. When the camera panned up to his face, the bottom winced visibly with each thrust. The video concluded with the top blowing his load inside the brotha, who looked visibly relieved that the scene was over. The whole scene brought to mind a conversation with some young trade…

Like the man in the video, he was very young and very small. He had a penchant for bigger, taller, chubby, aggressive men, like Ya Brista, which was why we had the conversation naked in my bed, post-coitus, round one. His head resting contentedly on my chest as my fingers plumbed the depth of his intimacies, he casually mentioned that as a bottom, he was supposed to take whatever the top dished out. When I reminded him that he didn’t have to do anything he didn’t want to, he responded, “What choice do I have? He’s bigger than me. I’m a bottom.”victimI wish I could say that I had never heard this before, that it was particular to the dynamic between this particular dude and the kind of men he liked, but it wasn’t. Are we teaching young bottom brothas that their lot in life is to endure, that their only option is to let a man climb on top of him and “do his business?” What does it say that in far too many porn videos, the sexual satisfaction and gratification of the bottom seems to be at best a secondary concern? And what are we teaching young top brothas? Can they just take what they want, regardless of the feelings or desires of the bottom? Is the world their oyster and its bottoms merely the pearls for the plucking?

Now I am not (necessarily) suggesting that the brotha in the video was being assaulted, nor that my young friend had been either. That said, if we foster a climate where the desires of one group are constantly and consistently subsumed by those of another, can we be surprised that some fall victim to assault and abuse? When we as gay men deride “gutter-butt” bottoms who prefer bareback sex, without similarly-charged language for bareback tops, on whom are we placing our values, and our blame? Is there a connection between the way we treat bottoms and the prevalence of sexual assault in our society? I don’t have all the answers, but it is important to begin to ask the questions.

President Obama has declared April 2014 to be National Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month. It is important for us not only to support those who have been victims, but to look at ourselves and consider the extent to which we have contributed to the problem. We see the values of our society reflected in the porn we watch, and the devaluation of the desires of some is a slope slippery enough to lead some to believe their lot is only to endure, and others to be convinced they are empowered to take whatever they want.

NO ONE DESERVES THIS!!!SAPACSAAMxsexual-violence-ribbon.gif.pagespeed.ic_.MbEJ6zYWWw-232x300

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