Content Warning: Anger, Consent Violations, and the bullshit that continues to support sexual assaulting behaviours
When it comes to addressing allegations of consent violations, some organizations just don’t seem to learn. I can’t help but wonder… how many victims will be enough to start figuring out that we need to NOT give a platform to persons who have a history of non-consensual behaviour??
A couple years ago, when I wrote this piece about the man that has violated my and other people’s consent I think I had this naive belief that the organizations that this person was involved with did not understand their role in what happened.
And let me be very clear here, they most certainly had a role.
The board members of these Edmonton based organizations KNEW that this person was aggressively violating people’s consent. I have, in writing, admission that they had reports going back 15 years, and that they ”talked to him” about it way back then, that many people had complained but because no one had ”formally complained” they could not do anything.
They KNEW and yet they put this person out there as a volunteer for their organization, as an educator on specific types of play, and in positions where this person would have authority.
They KNEW that this person was ”handsy” and aggressive and yet they put this individual in charge of spaces where nudity and physical contact were part of the program.
They KNEW that he liked to touch and smack others without consent, and yet they put him in charge of play spaces. They KNEW that this person liked to push past a no, and they endorsed him in so many ways.
These organizations gave this person space to find new targets. They assisted him in assaulting dozens of people (that I know of) by endorsing him. Persons entering into the community can only go on the information they have, and if someone is widely accepted by the community, how can they not assume that this person is someone they can trust, at least a little?
And once entering the community, if they stay (and many did not) over time they become acclimatized to the behaviour, they see how others manage/cope and they learn to do the same. He was, and still appears to be the missing stair in our community.
When I first went public with my experience with him I had dozens of people tell me that they too had problems with this person-until they learned to hug him right away when entering a shared space. I shit you not, people told me that if I would just go hug this creep that he would stop harassing me.
People who behave like this person do not typically do it only once. People who cannot fathom boundaries and bodily autonomy are quite often habitual abusers, and this fella is no different.
Dozens of people took the time to write me, to let me know that they knew EXACTLY who I was referring to, because he had done the EXACT SAME THING to them, or to their partner. They recognized him by his words, his actions. Still today, even in OTHER CITIES people approach me and thank me for speaking up, then share their own story of how he violated their (or their partner’s) consent.
Despite this, despite all of the crap that happened the same organizations that gave him a platform by which he was able to violate my consent, to grab my naked body when he was DM’ing, to assault me in a space he was in charge of, AGAIN THIS YEAR have provided him space at their event, as a fricken vendor.
An event, may I add, in which many new folk attend, which means they have not heard the warnings. A huge sarcastic “Bravo” to the boards that are still supporting this individual, that after years of discussion in a society that is bombarded with #MeToo and #TimesUp discussions that shed light on WHY persons in charge of spaces need to be stepping up, that these boards are STILL allowing persons with a HISTORY of non-consensual behaviour a platform by which they can find new persons to assault. Good Job.
I have first hand knowledge of over 3 dozen people who experienced his non-consensual attentions… how many more before you figure out that by allowing him to be in your space you are ENDORSING his behaviour?
Yes I did report this to them, way back then
Yes I asked him to stop fucking touching me, to which he responded that he had “never” touched me.
Yes I reported to police
Yes the applicable boards know that as well.
The only way this shit is ever going to change is if the organizations quit giving known abusers a place to find more people to abuse.
The excuse that you need a police report is fucked up (and a lie, as I have a fucking police report).
The excuse that it is personal drama is fucked up (and a lie, I never dated, played or hung out with this person aside from sharing space in the BDSM community).
The excuse that there was no “formal report” to the board is fucked up (and a lie, because they did get a formal report).
What is it going to take before boards start addressing this shit? Before they acknowledge that they too have a role in our BDSM communities, and that while providing space for all our wonderful, kinky fucked up shit they also need to quit victim blaming and silencing, and start doing the hard work of telling problem individuals that they cannot be there
It is not too much to ask, that persons with a history of violating consent are not permitted to attend private kink / sex based functions.