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  • Jill Rafferty-Weinisch


Updated: Apr 13, 2021

Lindsey Graham Doubts New Kavanaugh Accuser: “Why Would You Go To Parties With Gang Rape?” – MSNBC

They both knew there were wolves in the forest, but Little Red Riding Hood’s mother sent her out into the woods anyway.

If you drive a car, you’ll likely have three to four accidents during your lifetime. No one suggests we should stop driving cars.

I have a friend who was raped by the school janitor when she stayed after school for algebra help.

And a friend who was raped by her brother’s best friend…

…by her grandfather in her childhood bedroom

…by the ice cream man

…by her co-worker behind the supermarket where they worked

…by her priest

…by her ex-husband

…by the handyman she hired to fix a door

Errands must be run. Grandmothers must be visited. And the forest isn’t the only place where danger can lurk.

And surely wolves and boys at parties can be reasoned with. These boys, after all, will grow from beasts to become the men who will marry us, hire us, rule us, judge us. They travel in packs, you know. The fairly tale omitted that detail.

So we must be clever

…about what we wear

…about what we drink

…about the messages we send

…don’t be alone with a boy in a room…or a car

…don’t talk to boys you don’t know

…don’t tell him where you live, or where you are going

…don’t give him the wrong impression

…walk with your keys between your knuckles

…remember, the elbow is the hardest part of your (far too soft) body. Hit with that first.

“Stay on the path, Little Red! And don’t dare speak to anyone on the way!”

We go to the restroom in pairs…watch each other’s drinks.

When it happens to one of the other girls, we exchange knowing glances. And those of us who have escaped unscathed enjoy a moment of relief…and of superiority. We’ve advanced to the next round. And we judge that girl as much as we pity her. For letting her guard down. For not following the rules…for not being more clever. We must believe that impossible games can still be won.

And I need to believe, more than anything, that I am more clever than she.

Until I am the one not clever enough. There is no Woodsman coming…and no amount of cleverness can change the rules of the forest. A little red cloak is no match for the claws of the wolf.

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