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I Am Karen, Hear Me Roar: In Which I Am Not Allowed To Speak At 'Let Women Speak'
A Tacoma free speech event
Patch by Jess De Wahls
I wasn’t going to go. I’d been sick all week with a painful gut issue. But I woke up feeling much better and with a title for a piece of writing in my head. “I Am Karen, Hear Me Roar.” The day before was Helen Reddy’s birthday, so maybe she had something to do with it in the dream terrain. I got up and wrote it with Morning Brain, and then I realized I had to go, and that I wanted to read my piece. I put on my “Adult Human Female” definition of Woman t-shirt and zipped up my coat with the "Heretic" patch on the front. Took a deep breath, put on my shades and walked with my friends into the plaza, noting a row of antifa-looking men in black on the steps above us, waiting for us.
There were only 30 of us, so I was glad to be another body lending strength, bearing witness. One powerful speaker was a young and disabled bisexual woman who spoke through tears and with shaking hands of the damage the gender cult had done to her. Another woman who spoke was lunged at by a man in black, his attack blocked by one of the women.
But I never got to speak at the Let Women Speak free speech event. We were shut down by a mob of violent men and angry teenagers, whose high school principal allowed them to threaten us, jeer at us, spit on us, throw bottles at us, and drown us out. “No hate here!” they cried, their beautiful young faces contorted with what can only be described as hate. “We will never hear you!” they chanted. Maybe if they would just listen, they might learn things they don’t know. Maybe they would learn critical thinking skills, as they peacefully argued their points. Wouldn't that have been a better teaching moment for the principal to encourage?
By the end, there were 200 of them screaming and threatening us, closing in around our small group gathered in the basin of the plaza. My friend April who organized the event had her hand smashed and her fingers broken. It was terrifying to be there. After we were forced to end our event because we feared further violence, several women were followed by groups of teenagers taunting and continuing to threaten them.
Why all the hatred toward women, many of us with grey hair? The age-old question.
So here is the speech I never got to give.
In this analogy, Dick’s Tasty Bites represents all the institutions (the press, education, entertainment, law, medicine, sports, etc.) captured by gender ideology. I may not have been able to speak, but they can’t shut us up forever.
I am Karen, Hear Me Roar
Call the manager immediately. I wish to register a complaint in person, also in writing. I have written the complaint about the harm being caused by Dick’s Tasty Bites, using logic, art, and impeccable grammar. I have already emailed it to the manager, cc’ing his assistant enablers. I will use whatever tools I have, and yes, as I live and breathe, whatever privilege I have, to succeed in calling attention to the danger to public health this establishment poses.
I’m aware of you watching me, cringing, trying to melt into a wall covered with dusty and dead animal heads, pink and blue trans flags woven merrily in their antlers. Yeah, I totally know you are there, even though you have ghosted me for months. What, I make you uncomfortable, old friend? You wish you didn’t know me, that I would STOP TALKING ABOUT THIS? Do you think I’m going on long past my expiration date, which was 38, maybe 40 on a good day? In some crack of your cowardly, lazy brain you think: maybe she has a point, but she is just so over the top. Take a chill pill. Whatever will stop you from being so irritating, from disrupting my rainbow fantasy that Dick’s Tasty Bites, a time-honored establishment, is not harming girls and women, sterilizing and causing permanent damage to children who cannot consent, and destroying the rights of gays, lesbians, and bisexuals.
“Gays and lesbians! OK, wow, that just shows what a dinosaur you are! It’s all about Queer now, get with it!” You see a boring, white, middle-age, grey haired harpy/witch/bitch/cunt/terf. Heretic. You see a woman who should be invisible, but she’s forcing you to pay attention to her. You see…a Karen. That’s perfect! You can accuse me of racism and cover up the ageism and sexism that Dick’s Tasty Bites has fostered since time immemorial.
It doesn’t matter what you call us to shame us and shut us up. Our roar is the roar of our mothers, our grandmothers, and our great-grandmothers, stretching back to the first woman born. And we are just getting started.