This is what I said:
The fabulous Jaz Tupelo took this video. That cutie with the great hair helping me out? That's Jender. She's my partner in crime, the one I want on my team when the Zombies come. You can read more about our collaborations here.
This is what the text of my speech said, though I dropped my own best line in delivery:
My name is Lynne Marie Wanamaker and I’m here because I believe that freedom from sexual violence is a right and not a privilege.So long as we live in a world where some of us are at disproportionate risk of violence—women and girls, transwomen, sex workers, women of color—so long as some of us are at greater risk of violence than others, our society does not enjoy the right of safety equally.
And so long as I have to live in this world—and raise a daughter in this world—where one in six women will face attempted or completed rape in her lifetime—then I will consider self-defense a basic life skill for those of us under attack.Because if we cannot anticipate safety in our homes, our schools, our workplaces and our public spaces—if, in fact, our lack of safety is normalized a minimized and excused, and we are blamed for the attacks we suffer—then we will find a means by which to defend ourselves.
Because the truth is that those of us under attack practice self-defense every day. We must. It is a matter of our survival.I want to see by a show of hands if this is true for you or for someone you love:
If you have ever used your mind to protect yourself. If you have ever planned for your safety—asked someone to walk you to your car, gotten a ride from campus security so you would not have to walk alone across a dark campus. If you have ever locked your doors and windows, if you have brought your dog with you when you go hiking in the woods. If you have ever heard footsteps coming up behind you and thought of what you would do if it was someone e who wanted to hurt you. If you have ever trusted your instincts about whether or not a person or situation was dangerous to you. If you or someone you know has ever used your mind to keep yourself safe: Raise your hand.If you or someone you know has ever used your voice to protect yourself. If you have ever spoken out against injustice. If you have ever yelled for help. If you have ever used your voice to give enthusiastic consent for a desired sex act. If you have ever used your voice to give an unequivocal NO to unwanted touch. If this is true for you or for someone you know—If you have used your voice to protect yourself: Raise your hand.
If you or someone you know has created distance between themselves and danger, raise your hand. If you have terminated a relationship with someone who controlled, threatened, intimidated or abused you. If you avoided a person or location that you thought would be dangerous to you. If you ran away from someone who tried to assault you. If this is true for you or someone you know: Raise your hand.If you or someone you know fought back. If you kicked and hit and elbowed and gouged and spit and scratched and stomped and bit. If you or someone you know fought back in body and spirit: Raise your hand.
If you or someone you know told what happened to you. If you said, “I was attacked. I was raped. And it was not my fault.” If you told and told and told until someone believed you, and helped you, and you were able to heal and move on to the gorgeous life that is your birthright. If you or someone you know told someone you trust: Raise your hand.
These are the five fingers of self-defense. We practice them every day. And we remember them with a chant. We say:
I’m going to teach more self-defense this afternoon. Right now we’ll end by learning a basic strike and yell….