I read another piece recently that asserted that violence is so intrinsically intertwined with our current concept of masculinity (think of every movie ever) that advocating for stopping it is a part of what the hurt and outrage are about over this ad. “If we are supposed to stop bullying and fighting and entitlement to women, we don’t know who we are as men.” This made a lot of sense to me.

In the end, it really shouldn’t matter how universal something is or isn’t — if it’s a detrimental part of society then purge it.” But how are you going to purge something that a certain part of the population (both male and female) won’t acknowledge is truly a problem? Internalized misogyny is a very real phenomenon and women are quite capable of absorbing all of the same messaging as men around that. What #MeToo illustrated was the pervasiveness of women as victims of sexualized violence. Prior to that, even women didn’t realize how many of the other women they know have dealt with harassment, abuse, rape, etc. I personally do not know any women who haven’t had some kind of experience with this and I’m middle aged. Even my friend who is a Trump supporter and who spoke out against the Women’s March has stories that she told me around the time that #MeToo broke. My 85 year old mother was telling me the other day about some more of her stories. I knew a few of them, but there were even more, and she grew up in f a small town in the 1940s and 50s. All her friends have stories too. Not every single women has experienced something like this, obviously, but if you are over about the age of 25 and female, chances are very, very high that you have, repeatedly. So, to be tired of hearing about that or talking about that is to further dismiss those experiences as being unimportant. Which is why we can’t purge it from our society because we won’t even fully acknowledge that it’s there or a big deal. It’s still hard to talk about. I have a friend whose 25 year old daughter just told her a few weeks ago about her rape — 10 years ago. Then there’s this as well:

The word “victim” has become a slur. It connotes weakness (you allowed something bad to happen to you) and a kind of cry-baby mentality. You’ve said a lot that makes sense but I just don’t know how we are supposed to talk about what needs to improve without talking about what’s wrong.

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