This Is Why We’re Here

sunde illustrates her essay about why Roe got overturned


When I first got Jasmine, she was so physically weak from growing up in the pound that she immediately injured both her knees and seriously injured her back.  Then her elbows went because they picked up the extra work of supporting her big body that her messed up knees could not.  So for months she was on restriction where she could go to the beach but was not allowed to run or play at all.

This was fine with our sweet Jasmine because she was terrified of the beach…and the park and her local neighborhood.  She only become brave enough to enjoy herself outside if there were other dogs around.  She deeply lacked confidence so if a dog played rough our big grey pitbull would cry and roll on her back in surrender.  If a little dog yapped and nipped at her, she’d run away and then circle back, crawling on her belly so as not to scare away the little dog when she begged him to forgive her.  So when some guy (always a guy) would roll up with his gigantic, unfixed German Shepard, Aikido Mix or any other type of large, male breed that would immediately starting humping Jasmine, she would not tell them no, she was too nervous.  She would stand frozen as they would begin to mount her, their gross little lipstick poking around.

“No!!!” I would shriek. “Get your dog!!” I would shout at the guy, running to push his dog off Jasmine.  “Isn’t she fixed?” He would ask. “Why does it even matter if they do it?”

“First of all”  I would tell him.  “My dog is not here so that your dog can fuck her.  She’s here to enjoy the beach, not to get raped for twenty minutes.  Furthermore, she has a bad back and your giant dog could literally cripple her.  Get your dog away from us.”

The guy would then collect his dog and call me a myriad of names that you call female humans and wander off, totally shocked that I didn’t want my innocent  baby dog to be deflowered by his man dog. Instead of dipping her toes in the water or digging a hole and laying in it while sniffing the air he truly thought Jasmine should be violated.  This happened many times in the first couple years that I had her. Only until she became confident enough to spin around with a growl and nip at the dog did this stop.

The first time a man said this to me I couldn’t believe it.  My dog is fixed so his dog should be able to insert himself into her while she’s attempting to live her best life and enjoy a day at the beach???  Is that really what he’s saying?   This attitude was so prevalent I began to just gather Jasmine and get as far away as possible from any man approaching with a large dog.

I realize now, in the face of Roe vs. Wade getting over turned, that this is one of many examples of why we’re here.  Many people believe that females of any species do not have a right to their body.  If a male of their species decides that they should stick their wiener in them, then so be it.  That female of the species just needs to stop what they’re doing for the moment and accept this advance because females are here to be vessels to males.  If a female of that species gets injured, scared, traumatized or pregnant by this experience it really doesn’t matter.  The fact that so many men wander around thinking it’s totally a-okay to let their dog mount and have sex with a stranger’s dog while they are at the park sipping their coffee shocks me but does not surprise me.

It doesn’t surprise me because I experience this mindset all the time, as all women do.   Just today, when I made an in person deposit for my business called Sunde White Industries everything was normal and then the teller says at the very end, “Are you Britten?” (My husband is on the account so he can access it.)

“No,”  I said, “I’m Sunde.”

He assumed that I was not the owner of the business.  He assumed I was named Britten because like, in 2022, how could a woman have her own business, wtf?

What about the time I needed an ear surgery and the doctor wanted to speak to my husband to make sure that he approved of me getting the procedure?  Yes, that happened.

What about when a person recognizes me from my shop and says, “Oh, don’t you and your husband own that gift shop?”

I cringe because I own my gift shop.  I created my business.  I thought of all the cards.  I drew them, wrote them, printed them.  I went to tradeshows and fairs to sell them.  I thought up the idea of my shop, I designed it and I built every single shelf, table and display piece in there with my very own brain and my very own hands.  No one ever says to my husband, “Oh, don’t you and your wife own that electrical business?” Nope, everyone just knows that only Britt would own his electrical business.

What about when my new landlord changes my name in his emails to us to Sunde Howard even though on all the paperwork I gave him my name is written and signed as Sunde White and my husband’s name is listed as Britt Howard?  But my landlord decides that he will be the final decision maker on what I will be called.  Even though, written clear as day on the checks that I write to him it says “Sunde White” he still changes it to Sunde Howard in all our written interactions.

What about when I filled out my lease for my shop and they sent it back, requesting that my husband (who does not co- own my business) co-sign it and fill out all his information.  I truly do not believe they would ask a man trying to open a business to bring his lease to his wife to sign.

What about the fact that, and brace yourself for this one, in many states it is legal to allow medical students to give an unconscious woman a pelvic exam while they are having surgery WITHOUT her consent??  Yep, this is a real thing.  It’s actually sexual battery but because some almost doctors do it in a hospital it’s research!  It’s outlawed in my state but seriously, please check if it’s legal in your state before you go into surgery.  Here’s an article about it if you want to read it. You know why this is legal?  Because many people don’t believe that women or any female of a species should be allowed to peacefully and privately enjoy their life and bodily autonomy.

So when we Americans had the choice to elect either a highly qualified woman to be president or an orange colored grifting psychopath that would have an opportunity to put at least three religious zealots  on the Supreme Court, I shouldn’t have been surprised that some Americans would literally do anything to not allow a woman to become the most powerful person on  earth.

And so here we are.  Roe has been overturned.  Our daughters and granddaughters will have to show their negative pregnancy tests in order to be allowed to travel across state lines.  We will lose job opportunities because who wants an employee that may not be allowed to travel?  Rape will basically become legal because what girl or woman would report it if the government then tracks them to see if they should arrest them for getting an illegal abortion?  Women will be forced to give birth even if it kills us.  Couples trying to expand their families will have to fear for the life of the woman if she ends up with an Ectopic Pregnancy.  They both have to worry about imprisonment  if she miscarries and the authorities accuse her of actually aborting her baby.  Neighbors can turn in their neighbors as fetus bounty hunters, receiving money from the state for reporting an alleged abortion.  Women are no longer full citizens, but were we ever?

There is so much subconscious misogyny that exists in all of us.  It’s like a cloud floating over us all that we have breathed in since birth so that all that micro misogyny courses through all of our veins and floods our brains.   I beg you, and I’ll do it too, please please please let’s look deep inside ourselves and be honest and identify any old ways of thinking that devalue women.  Once you’ve identified these thoughts, get those suckers out of you and replace them with glowing and empowering, supportive thoughts about girls and women.

When you vote, think carefully how it will affect women, more importantly, how about voting for more women?  When you speak, think of how it will make your fellow citizens think about women.  When you assume things about women’s abilities, stop yourself.

If you’re a man reading this and you’re like, “I’m one of the good ones!  Not all men!!!” Great, thanks for that.  Now go stand up for women around other men.  Find 3 women in society that you admire.  Seek out women that can be your heroes along with men.  Vote for women.  We are having a red alert emergency, now is not the time to vote about gas prices because all of us women are hurtling towards Aunt Lydia and red robes.  Vote for people that will pull us back from the edge of this cliff.  Your sisters, wives, friends, girlfriends, nieces and daughters and all those awesome little girls running around your neighborhood soccer field or surfing out in the ocean with you are counting on you.


This week the first woman fighter pilot was chosen to fly with The Blue Angels.  The Blue Angels, my gahd, they are so awesome, so skilled and loud and brave.  Geez, I love watching them fly over the Bay on a clear October afternoon in San Francisco. This year, when I look up at all that power flying low and fast over the city, I’ll get chills thinking that there’s a woman up there.  Lt. Amanda Lee of Mounds View MN is up there, holding all that power in her hands and I’ll know that we will never fucking go back.