Women are more left than men. A possible explanation why.

Research and analysis have shown that women born after 1955 tend to vote more left than their male counterparts, with the gap between those voting groups widening in a sort of inverse relationship to their age – meaning the younger the voting groups, the bigger the gap, which tells us that the female tendency to vote left is increasing. The reasons for that are many, of course. Researchers state aspects like the decline of religiosity, or women showing a stronger preference for redistribution, social justice, stuff like that. While all this – including the rather conservative image of a woman’s role in society that right-wing parties tend to propagate – surely is valid, I figure that there’s one more thing playing into the whole mixture.

In May 2018, a 14-year-old girl named Susanna was raped and murdered by a young Iraqui refugee and asylum seeker in Wiesbaden, Germany. (According to the news, he confessed to the murder, not the rape. Just adding this for the sake of giving the complete picture.) The perpetrator’s brother belonged to Susanna’s circle of friends, which made her something of a regular guest in the asylum seekers’ hostel where his family lived.

The tragedy of a teenage girl being raped and killed by someone she knew and probably trusted to a point instantly drowned amidst a chorus of racist bleating originating from the AfD (Alternative für Deutschland, meaning Alternative for Germany), a textbook example right-wing party. And all the subsequent self-righteous tweets and videos and questions along the lines of “When will we stop importing murderers and rapists?” churned up a nasty little thought in my brain…

You fuckheads don’t say a word when the perpetrator is a German. A woman’s right to live, to not be raped, to go wherever she pleases, whenever she pleases, and be safe, only matters to you if the rapist and/or murderer is not ‘one of us’. If you can use the case for your fucked up political agenda.

One in three women in Europe experiences sexual violence in her life. Violence. Not a pat on the ass or a sleazy comment. Actual violence. In Germany, those figures are below European average. ‘Only’ one in twenty women gets raped in her life. ‘Only’ one in ten experiences other forms of sexual violence. Those figures are from a 2004 study. Way before the current influx of refugees the right-wing douchebags try to blame now. Of 20 cases of rape reported to the police every single day (!), 94% of the victims are women. Oh, and that’s not even all, because on average, only 15% of cases even get reported. And here’s the worst of it: 77% of sexual offenses against women are comitted by either their partner, or a friend, or a relative, or someone else they, like Susanna, know and probably trust to a point.

Right-wing parties, as mentioned before, usually propagate a rather conservative image of what a woman’s role should be. Wife. Mother. Supportive of her man, quiet in public. If she gets raped, it’s probably her own silly fault for going out at night, for dressing the wrong way, for not staying at home. Very funny, that, if home is where the danger is.

Long story short: No, knowing the guy who forces himself on you is pure-bred white doesn’t make the experience more enjoyable. Small wonder if women tend to not vote for parties who only care for their rights and safety if it fits with their despicable goals.

Fun fact: Parts of the Austrian government recently confirmed this little theory of mine. A directive sent from the Ministry of the Interior to the police forces included a juicy bit of instructions regarding their communication with the media: They should put more emphasis on communicating those cases of sexual violence where the woman did not know her assailant, and always state the perpetrator’s nationality. Now guess what kind of party Herbert Kickl, Interior Minister, belongs to.

Look here for a bit of related reading.

 

About angelikarust

My name is Angelika Rust. I was born in Vienna in 1977. These days, I live in Germany, with my husband, two children, a despotic couple of cats and a hyperactive dog. After having tried almost every possible job from pizza delivery girl to HR consultant, I now make a living knowing English. No, I haven’t yet figured out what I want to be when I grow up, whenever that may be. In the meantime, I write the occasional book.
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