I made a thread especially for this kind of digression, you numpty!
And a very nice thread it is too
I have nothing of value to add to this thread that hasn’t already been said, but like @colinzealuk I too massively regret the reaction I used to have to @DarwinBabe’s posts years back. The thought process of “Oh she’s being really horrible and overly mean to get a point across”. It wasn’t that I didn’t agree with the viewpoints being put across by herself and others, but “the tone”, which looking back is not only incredibly shameful but a deeply imbedded deflection of an incredibly terrible aspect of society.
I’m having trouble putting this into words because I’m not as eloquent or qualified to talk about these things on here as many of you are, but it just seems absolutely disgraceful looking back that the whole “my feelings have been hurt / i’ve been called out unfairly / someone is getting pummelled because of a misunderstanding of how they’ve worded something / boo-hoo I’ve been cut-down on drowned in sound dot com” in an internet argument somehow mattered, ignoring the bigger context of institutionalised sexism that woman have to go through every single day, in almost every aspect of their lives. Probably comes from the whole “woman who stand up for themselves are bossy or bitchy” thing, or at least it subconsciously does.
ANYWAY this isn’t about me obviously. Got a bit creakyknees there sorry. But I feel like I’m probably not the only one on here who feels this way.
I’m sorry for ways at which I’ve deflected an incredibly important conversation in the past.
Where are you getting this information from?
yeah, I’m curious about this too. seems like a figure just plucked out of the air to me
was considering challenging this the other day, but…you know…I’m on a sticky wicket round here and couldn’t be assed with the inevitable fallout
I’m presuming it’s an estimate, in which case its not taken from anywhere in particular.
The point is that it’s likely an incredibly high number. Don’t really see what we’re going to achieve by suggesting it’s an exaggerated figure.
Well we’re kind of saying that most men here are sexual abusers, most of our fathers are, most of our brothers/grandfathers, almost every male we know basically etc.
Are we really saying only 10% of the entire male population are not sexual abusers?
Sexual abuse? Maybe not. Sexual harrassment? Definitely. I know for a fact that my dad, whilst not abusive per se, has acted shittily towards women in the past, and so have I. I reckon most guys have a story, if they’re willing to be brutally honest about themselves.
This is where I get a bit confused as I’m feeling/seeing a lot of people bunching in bad treatment relationships into this larger debate about sexual abuse/exploitation of power etc. I’m sure the recent news has brought up a lot of feelings and evaluations on previous relationships so I can understand it but I find things a bit confusing?
There is quite a difference imo of people being bad to people in relationships (which happens from both men and women) and where the man in question is mentally/sexually abusive.
Is this now a larger issue about how men treat women in general or i dunno?
I’m feeling like I’m being told in a roundabout way that we should now be saying every single man you’ve ever encountered in your life is awful and has done so much wrong to you and everyone around you.
(^this is not me being argumentative or anything, i’m genuinely a bit confused and want to learn more from whoever)
Ah, I get where you’re coming for now…I completely feel that confusion too…but don’t feel like I’m well versed in it enough to respond properly.
I don’t think it’s that all men are always awful, it’s that we’ve almost all in a greater or lesser way probably acted in a way that’s either made someone uncomfortable specifically at some point or at some point contributed to the wider culture that’s allowed some of the stuff discussed higher in the thread to happen. It’s probably important in this not to conflate harassment and abuse, but to remember that the former and a willingness to look the other way can absolutely enable the latter.
If society is to progress further I think as much as hearing the voices of survivors of abuse is hugely important and their voices must absolutely come first, as individuals we also need to confront those episodes where we let our fellow human beings (usually women) down.
I don’t know how to articulate this properly so any corrections welcome
This narrative change (i’m not sure whether it’s being driven by the press or if it’s just some weird patriarchal learnt behaviour) is really weird.
I had conversations about the Weinstein stuff this weekend that had me pulling my hair out. The flow of the conversation has gone from “these monsters” to “how are you meant to meet people if you can’t meet them at work”. It seems like there’s some concerted effort to normalise the terrible behaviour.
It seems the “they’re banning christmas” approach has been adopted as “you can’t even talk to a woman at work anymore”. Association of something that people personally think is a good thing being threatened to be taken away as a way to minimise the hatred to sexual predators…It’s crazy
Well put, thanks!
I can totally see where this has all come from and I’m pleased about the response when it comes to people looking at their past and present behavior but I do feel some lines are getting blurred and I do feel some sense of awkwardness as a woman where I feel I should be wondering and questioning the men in my life.
It’s no longer an issue of “what has my favourite celeb done now?!” but it’s an issue of “are the men in my life like that?” and “what would I do if this was someone I know?”
A tricky one really. It’s certainly not for me or any other person to tell you how you should or shouldn’t respond.
Lines are certainly blurred - partly as people are processing things and learning, but also because others are acting more in the way @safebruv alludes to (that Newsnight special stands out as a good example with men conflating saying “Hi” to someone with abuse using words on the lines of “you can’t do anything now without risking accusations of abuse…”) - again, abuse and harrassment aren’t the same things, and behaving like a polite courteous human towards others would protect you from virtually all accusations of harassment too (you know this, obviously!) The thing I’ve come to realised (and much of what I think I was trying to get at above) is that while the most egregious stuff perpetrated by Spacey, Weinstein, Lacey and so on is not comparable to much of the stuff that I see day to day, it doesn’t happen in a vacuum either and so I have to look closer to home as well.
I don’t think it’s for anyone to necessarily to question others without evidence - if you’ve never seen anything to lead you to believe your Dad or boyfriend may have done or said things they probably shouldn’t, then there’s absolutely no reason to question it; just because many (possibly most) of us have it doesn’t mean we all did. It’s also not for any of us to necessarily think worse of people who have done smaller things but since learnt and changed (although that would be a fair response if that were how you did feel).
I do think though it’s for us to look inside ourselves and contribute better to bringing about some of the changes in society that we’ve sorely needed for a long, long time. I can’t do much about many of the abuses that have been in the news over the last month or two, but I can certainly do something small about the culture that validates that behaviour by not contributing further and not looking the other way in future when I do see something dodgy happening.
If you feel able to help someone with doing some of that introspection then that’s great, but it’s absolutely not your duty to do or feel anything specific about any of this - more or less any response is valid.
As usual - happy for others to challenge anything I’ve written, it’s all fairly unprocessed thoughts at this stage.
I can totally see that awkwardness - I guess I see the change from the perspective of being a man where it is moving from ‘What have those abusers’ done now?!’ to ‘How might my behaviour be a part of this?’ which can only really be a good thing.
Obviously don’t know the exact experiences you are the referring to, but all I would say is society is talking about sexualised violence (in varying degrees) which is quite different and important to stupid stuff like whether Christmas exists or not (it definitely does). I think the main thing to take away from this ever changing situation is that it’s going to take some time for peoples opinions and attitudes to settle while the, very important, conversation is ongoing and try not to judge people as they start to grapple with concepts they probably didn’t ever realise was there. I say this as someone who thinks of themselves as respectful to women and people in general always but is still nevertheless shocked by the sheer scale of abuse that the “metoo” hashtag has highlighted that I either didn’t know was there or perhaps didn’t do enough about at the time, rather than criticising or blaming anyone. What’s important is what we do now when the dust (if it ever does) settles.
I think this article addresses a lot of what has most recently been discussed in this thread
What happens next?
Yes sorry I meant that probably something like that proportion of men have done at least one thing in their life that would count as an incident of sexual assault or harassment (or something similar if you want to stretch it - like, if they never leave their bedroom but regularly call women whores or sluts or something).
And yeah it kinda ties in with my point i made waaay upthread about the difference between men who get off on abuse of power, and men who do bad things because their privilege (of being male, but maybe also of being rich, or successful in some way, or even just good-looking) blinds them to a lack of consent for particular actions. Doing a bad thing doesn’t make you a bad person, and actually I think being able to admit to yourself that, like the vast majority of men, you’ve done something bad like this can really help people reflect on their behaviour and how they can improve the way they talk to/act around women (cos I guess we can all improve all the time).
Good for these peeps