Like many these days, I am filled with rage. Your rage may vary from mine, but the particular nature of my rage is coming from all the sexual assault stories. The thing that makes me the maddest in these stories is the men in them and the men reacting to them.
Men, we need to chat. If you have a Y chromosome, you need to listen up. First off, there is a good chance if you’re reading this, you have never committed a sex crime. In fact, that should be the norm. Furthermore, let’s just say this right now, anyone who has ever assaulted a woman is a piece of dirt who is not worth our time.
Men, we need to be harder on our fellow testicle-Americans. For the past year, we have seen #metoo far too much. Are you listening? I’m telling you now that even if you don’t realize it, someone you know has been assaulted. That’s just the truth. We are morally obligated to not only listen to women, but to take action.
To be fair, lots of action is being taken, even if it’s the simple action of listening to women and some people finally losing the positions of power that enabled their abuse. But, I think we can do better. I think there is a simple action the rest of us men can do to help.
We need to point out that this is not normal behavior. It is not acceptable. It is not “boys will be boys” or “locker room talk.” I know not all men act this way because I didn’t. I think there’s a lot more men like me out there than not like me.
Men, we need to shame those guys. You know the ones. Many of the same ones who assaulted women bullied other men. There are a number of men who have been afraid as well, and that fear is their tool.
The women have a hashtag and it’s great. I propose another hashtag for those of us who are allies. It’s a simple hashtag to throw around when anyone tries to tell you such misogynistic behavior is normal, because treating anyone as less than human for any reason is not normal.
If someone says, “that’s just how men act,” you respond #Ididn’t. If someone says “boys will be boys,” you tell them they are wrong. Yes, people should lose careers and positions of esteem for things they did. It’s called “consequences for your actions” and it happens to us all.
Men, we have a moral obligation to ostracize these animals in our gender. It’s not all men, and we need to speak up and let those criminals know just how small, pathetic and alone they are in their evil.
Join me and tell those who say, “men always acted that way” #Ididn’t.