Mark Wignall | Older women and younger boys
Although it can be accepted as believable that sexual abuse has its highest concentration among the tales of powerful men taking sexual advantage of poorer, underaged and oftentimes, voiceless women, the strong allegations that Asia Argento, actress, director, model and singer engaged in sex with an underaged boy brings shape to what many had long suspected.
Power is more than likely a causal factor in sexual abuse and, while men may be its worst culprits, some women have found that power eggs them on to experiment with their inner demons.
Many of us are more than quite familiar with the constant news that sexual abuse and paedophilia have been unearthed in another Catholic order or that an older, a trusted member of the Protestant clergy has impregnated another underaged girl. Those matters have happened so often that it is fair to take it for granted that not much will change in the mid- or long-term in the very upright, holy Church.
But let me explore briefly some accepted but perverse 'norms' in our society. It would not be the preferred discussion at a black-tie affair at Pegasus but, for many men of 'substance', and even those who have never had a single minute of fame, it is with nostalgic fervour that they speak loudly at bars of having their first bout of sex while they were underaged with an older domestic helper. In a far off past.
I cannot swear that I know all that women say to each other, especially when they are discussing sexual matters, but I would be shocked if they would boast about an older man abusing them while they were underaged. And have a good laugh at it.
Many in our society view sexual abuse as the property of the male of the species. The male has a penis as a 'weapon,' more spear-like than purely phallic. A man is seen as having the power to penetrate and the female has only negative power on the left side of the graph. Omitted from the discussion is any consideration of undesirable long-term psychological outcomes.
At a time in my 30s while I was going through a bad time an older woman (in her 50s) befriended me. She spent freely, had a comfortable apartment and would have her helper cook up the best cuts of prime steak while breaking out the expensive whisky. As far as I was concerned, we were nothing more that drinking partners while I pined over a painful marital separation.
Poor me. One night as I was trying to sleep she attempted to force herself on me. This forum does not allow too much of the sick and salacious but, let me say that I found it most distasteful as she tried to rid me of my trousers and my permission. I reasoned that an adult ought to be free to have sex with a partner who is in the same, mutual space.
The thing is, when I told my friends, they ridiculed me and called me 'soft'. "Wha! An shi have money," one said. "Yu a eediat!"
It's no great secret that some of the more aggressive, older women who sit closer to the boardrooms in this society have used their power to expropriate sex from younger males in the office. Based on what I know or, at the very least, suspect, not many of these men are ready to join the complaint line and bawl abuse.
In the #Metoo movement where unearthing sexual abuse by powerful males is the currency, Jamaica yawns because our bar has always been pretty low.
For women. Never.