Margaret Cho is known for her comedy but she has some important things to say musically as well.
Chois working on a second album of music and one of the songs from it is called I Want to Kill My Rapist. A sample of the lyrics: ‘I want to kill my rapist, I want to kill my rapist. I thought I forgave you, but I’d mistake you. I’ll shake you and I’ll bake you. You better run now while I’m having fun now. Here comes the sun now, and you’ll be done now. I see clearly and sincerely, you’ll pay dearly…’
She really means it.
Cho was sexually molested by a family friend from age five to 12 and at 14 was raped by another acquaintance.
‘I had a very long-term relationship with this abuser, which is a horrible thing to say. I didn’t even understand it was abuse, because I was too young to know. I endured it so many times, especially because I was alone a lot,’ Cho tells Billboard.
And it only got worse.
‘I was raped continuously through my teenage years, and I didn’t know how to stop it,’ she says. ‘It was also an era where young girls were being sexualized. For me, I think I had been sexually abused so much in my life that it was hard for me to let go of anger, forgive or understand what happened.’
To help process her pain, Cho has turned to music.
‘I’m still trying to figure out how to be a musician, but I really enjoy it. But really, we want to kill the rapists. I’m a victim and now a survivor of sexual abuse and rape, and I think it’s really hard to talk about it. I think having a song to perform live will allow others to talk about it. It’s a huge issue, and this was cathartic for me.
I think Bill Cosby and Woody Allen and all these men are so disgusting. It’s gross. This song I made is a rejection of all that. The rage women have against abusers is real. We have the power to come forward and say ‘This happened to me.’”
Cho’s abuser is still alive and her family knows about what happened to her.
‘They don’t really want to talk about it, because that would make it real somehow,’ she explains. ‘I think Asian culture often is in denial about such things. Like, if they don’t talk about it, it doesn’t exist. So it makes me unwelcome in some ways. But all I have is ownership of my own suffering. I can take that and explain it in a way that helps resolve it. But I often think, ‘How do I have sanity? How do I bring justice?’ I kind of save myself through it. ‘