When my sisters and I were younger, my mother taught us what to do if a boy or man touched us inappropriately. The lessons of “you should do this, when a boy does this…” led to us playing around, showing our fake karate moves and bursting into laughter each time.
Although it was all games at the time, we still knew the seriousness of the lesson and we stuck to it. “Mommy said don’t let a boy touch you anywhere because we are princesses—daughters of the Most High.”
That same lesson came to mind when I was watching CNN recently. Well, my father had it blasting in the family room and as I minded my business, but I was also picking up on a couple of the scandalous happenings of the political race. The news correspondent was on the topic of the several appalled women who have spoken up about Donald Trump making sexual advances on them. There was one exception, though—a young woman named Jennifer Murphy.
Murphy first met Trump when she was competing in the Miss USA competition and got to know him better when she was on The Apprentice. After Trump fired her on the show, he let her know that he was “impressed” with her and would still like to give her an opportunity to work for him. After several meetings, he sealed the promise with a smooth kiss on the elevator. Murphy was surprised, yet not offended. She admits that he showed “affection” for her as a person and she proudly sings him accolades at every rooftop (or media outlet, in this case).
I was baffled. Okay, fine. Be a Trump supporter. You can believe that he is the perfect candidate to turn the country around. But are you really advocating for him after he has shown you that he doesn’t respect you?
Even the news correspondent had her head cocked to the side and that squint in her eye like, “How, Sway, how?!”
Murphy goes as far as to express how “frustrating” it is that the media just wants to focus on the fact that Trump kissed her.
What else would the media focus be on? Should we forget about the leaked tape where Trump brags about his sexual assaults forced upon countless women?
I was a bit perplexed why I saw Murphy beaming about a man who took some of her power with one “small kiss.” The problem is not realizing that it is the problem. How isn’t she offended? How is she defending him? What about her self-worth?
We, women, need to love ourselves enough to be able to discern how we should and shouldn’t be treated. We need our mothers, and sisters, and women in leadership to tell us that we should not have to compromise. Men don’t. Why should we?
It may take longer for us to climb the ladder of success, but the journey is so much more worthwhile when we are resolute to earn what we deserve. We are to always have respect, love and honor for ourselves. We shouldn’t lower our standards because we are Queens—and nothing less.
The power doesn’t lie in the hand (or, in this instance mouth)of a man. It lies within you. Your spirit. Your body. Your voice. Your power to say no.
You are in charge of your body. You have the right to say no, regardless of the consequences. What’s yours is yours—and you don’t have to compromise your values, body, or being to get to where you want to be.
We still have a lot of work to do in getting more women in power in the workplace, equal pay, and all that. But we also have to work on realizing one point: we are all queens and we should never compromise our self-worth.
#Beautyfullreminder: You aren’t a sexual object, but a being. One that can make her own choices, one that deserves respect.
By Tarah-Lynn Saint-Elien