The #MeToo hashtag

What does everyone think is this helpful? I worry a little that it might accidentally normalize some things which is the opposite of the purpose. But then again maybe it is already normalized because honestly stuff happens to every girl I know well enough to talk about it and my guess is it happens to the ones I don't know as well too.

For me I could probably come up with a lot of incidents that were at least a little weird or troubling including several that are pretty bad, I am not going to list them all here most of you probably know pretty much what I mean. From the teacher who "joked" about me painting on my clothes and spending 2 hours on my hair every morning as a recurring joke he used two or three times per week all year trying to "relate" to us to the guy at a campus event that my friend busted last week taking pictures of my butt. Plus more serious incidents I have talked about before and don't really want to rehash right now.

Here are my two questions. Number 1, should I even spend more time thinking about this or is it better to put it aside? If I'm not mad when I don't think about it, and I get mad when I think about it, maybe I am better off not thinking about it as much? But then again is that enabling it to keep happening? Number 2, if we were to all list all of this stuff out, large and small, would that lead to guys dismissing the big stuff because they focus on the little stuff and argue about whether it is really worth complaining about? For example I mentioned the teacher's "jokes" to a guy once and he was like "he was just teasing you, if anything it sounds like a compliment." But that's not the point, the point is why is a teacher repeatedly getting the class to think about my clothes and hair instead of what we are supposed to be learning?? If it was some kind of dress code violation (which it wasn't, it was normal clothes) report me or talk to me privately but he was just casually bringing it up every couple days during his lecture to the class.

I'm doing fine I'm a happy person, life is good!! Also I should say, I have also done some things wrong myself, maybe I show up on somebody else's list as the villain (for example I mocked another girl's body when we were in 10th grade) so am I the wrong person to be talking about this or maybe the point is that it affects almost all of us??

Anyway just wondering what everybody else thinks about #metoo ! Thanks!!

my mom actually participated in it, actually. she never got into the story with me.

I think the big point of it is to get people talking about it and showing that, yes, this can happen to anyone. someone closer than you might realize or even think.

Well I have thought about it some more and, I think this can be a good thing, HOWEVER I am not really comfortable with naming the guys who did it unless there's proof or many witnesses. What prompted me to say this is that today, I saw where an actress said the older President Bush (the one who was president in the 80s) patted her butt and told an inappropriate joke when he was 89 years old meeting her in a wheelchair. I don't think he should do that but, he is 89 years old in a wheelchair the word she used was "sexual assault" I mean, come on. Like he's going to actually pin her down and attack her or even, like George Bush is going to call her TV producer and say fire her or give her a raise based on how she reacts, it's just a weird little moment. Anybody who spends time around kids (butt grabbing and boob grabbing are not that rare) or who has an affectionate 70 year old great uncle at family gatherings? (fully body hugs where his hands "accidentally" end up on your butt) knows what I mean it isn't scary it's just kind of weird. And somebody famous like this, even if he denied it the story will be out there forever, his grandchildren are probably hearing about it. I wish we had more words for this, "sexual assault" seems like too much, I am not saying it's nothing, it's inappropriate and uncomfortable but we should save the scary words for scary situations. I am worried this devalues what I think is the idea behind #metoo like it might make guys start rolling their eyes. JMO!!

It does meet the definition of sexual assault. does it warrant pressing charges? not necessarily. But can it be corrected? absolutely. a little boy probably isn't going to know any better?until you teach him better.?An elderly former president (or anyone, for that matter) probably does know better, but gets away with the excuse of being "stuck in his ways." Bonus points if he appears physically incapable of taking advantage of a younger, more physically fit person. (I actually have a very good example of getting away with sexually assaulting someone who is physically stronger. It's also an example of performing an otherwise "harmless" act.)

For some people it does make them physically afraid, and if it happens at a young age, from peers and strangers alike, there's a possibility that someone may grow up with the belief that they don't have much control over their bodies. Case in point a story/video I read of a 13 year old girl getting groped on a public bus. The perp did get attacked by another man who witnessed the whole thing but, what if he hadn't? What if he hadn't and, that predator decided to follow her out of the bus? What if she was 18 instead of 13, or older? What if the man had an apparent physical disability that would give the girl, or the hero, the upper hand? Would your opinion of what happened change from any of those things?

Those actions are only just the beginning. it may start with comments, then shoulder rubs/grabs, then groping when no one's looking or can prove it, then being called into the office to perform "favors" to get a raise, or just to keep your job, or to keep what's been happening in the exec's office from getting out and your life is over, (blackmail AND rape. hooray.) It's a spiraling domino effect, and the thing is, predators are aware they can get away with it based on how we treat it (just guys being guys, it's not actual rape.) but the things we consider harrassment is only a baseline. predators will get away with a lot more, if they can, but it for sure starts with that.

Let me put what you described in another perspective. Terry Crews had more recently shared his story on sexual assault vis Twitter, in case you haven't seen it already. If you don't know who Terry Crews is, most likely you know him as the "Old Spice Guy." Anyway, Terry Crews was at a gala with his wife last year, and a very notable Hollywood executive (he did not name names) came over to him, "groped [his] privates," "grinned like a jerk" at their shocked response, and walked away. At a public gala, in front of Crews' wife, and he did not proceed any further than that. Terry Crews is a big guy. And he knows he's bigger and stronger than this exec, he knows he could fight him off. But.... how would that look? According to Crews' words, it'll look like "240 lbs. Black Man Stomps Out Hollywood Honcho," and would've made headlines the next morning, with Crews in jail that same night. And he decided not to publicize it out of fear of being ostracized, especially when the predator is a person with a lot of power and influence that can dictate your career. All it took for a 40-something year old, 6'3, 245lb., former NFL linebacker for him to feel powerless was a grope from a man who felt like he could do it.?

Well I mean yes. It probably does meet a literal definition of sexual assault but, I think the definition is too rigid and it is a "boy who cried wolf" type situation. My goal isn't to minimize or silence anybody my goal is just, if patting a butt is assault then when people hear the words "sexual assault" a lot of them are going to be like, "you mean someone with authority or someone bigger and stronger pulled off her shirt and pinned her down and groped her and french kissed her or do you mean somebody harmless patted her butt?" I don't know what word to use instead, like "sexual disrespect" or "sexual microaggression" or, idk like "Class A sexual assault" vs "Class D sexual assault". I am not saying it's ok what I am saying is, if this is "sexual assault," then I have been sexually assaulted 100+ times by 15+ people (including today!!) and I have sexually assaulted several people by strict definition, it might be useful to get an idea of how frequent this kind of physical disrespect is but, there are only one two or three people I actually consider to have sexually assaulted me (one physical, one emotional (mentally abusive boyfriend) one kind of stalker type anonymous emails) and I want to have words that allow me to distinguish those situations from the rest. If it's literally all the same then which is it, should all of us including me be kicked out of school or be fired or be sued or be in jail or, should none of us face those consequences (even severe cases) as long as we promise to do better?? And being a child or being old IMO does make it different also. Not because it used to be ok to do it so he's stuck in his ways (well maybe that too) but more like, I don't think older people are always as mentally sharp or have the same filters or maybe they don't care as much what anybody thinks. And kids just don't know. What I am saying is, in reality it IS different, we all know it is different but a lot of people want to say it isn't different because they think it focuses "our side" or something, when in my opinion, it complicates the discussion.

I think the big thing from it is, sexual assault it much more of an umbrella term than people actually realize. When they think of "sexual assault" what automatically comes to mind is things like "rape" or "molestation"

There's the term "sexual violence" which is describes as all-encompassing, non-legal term to describe all possible sexual crimes/offenses/etc. Considering its definition, we should use this term to describe it all, even the acts that shouldn't necessarily warrant charges being pressed, yes? but the problem is the word "violence," which denotes acts such as stalking, bullying, harssment, and incest (which, by definition, falls into acts of sexual violence.)

it sounds more like you want a better definition for terms such as "sexual assault" or "groping" or "sexual misconduct." Unfortunately, in the U.S. alone those definitions to what results in a crime can vary from state to state, and even person to person, which is why a legal system of a state (and in this example, some rich and powerful people had to have been involved as well) can charge Brock Turner with "penetrating a non-consenting individual with a foreign object" and not rape.

Yeah I want better terms. And I know states are different but, as a general way of talking about things, I think it could be better than it is. But I mean like for example. Just horsing around I slap my friends butts sometimes and they do the same to me. It is girl on girl, we are straight, we like each other, we don't intend any bad feelings we just want to surprise each other and make each other squeal, and, there ARE no bad feelings. But it is still somebody smacking somebody else's butt without permission so, what is that TECHNICALLY? I was being carried on a guy's back and I kicked a nearby guy's butt just for fun what was that TECHNICALLY? I think there has to be some appreciation of whether there is actual danger (including social or psychological danger) and whether it actually makes the person feel bad which I know gets into a gray area since everybody perceives things differently.

Anyway I am probably making things too complicated as usual!!

yeah I wouldn't call what you just described as a technicality of any sort. Though nether of you asked permission beforehand, you and your friend have accepted it as a means of communication with each other in a way. There's a difference between teasing someone and the person on the receiving end teasing back or at the very least responding to it in a positive way, and teasing someone and the person on the receiving end suddenly turning red and going silent. Wouldn't you agree?

OK but, what if the person who does it thinks the other person will think it's funny or harmless, but the person receiving it doesn't like it? You can never be positive what somebody else will think. For example if my group of friends added a new girlfriend, what if we do the same to her and it turns out she has a hangup about it? And, when I kicked the guy's butt. There were some confused feelings there, he liked me, I "kind of" liked him and I did it because he seemed unhappy I was on the other guy's back so I was I guess communicating that he shouldn't give up yet (which I realize is weird and complicated but anyway!! Nothing ever happened with either of them anyway). So that was a type of communication, not meant harmfully but I guess you could say it was kind of sexual and, it was nonconsensual although honestly I doubt he minded? Anyway I just mean that I think there's more to it than a physical list of steps and in my mind, 89 year old guy in wheelchair fits different criteria than (say) 20 year old guy at party or 40 year old boss at work, really I think there are so many nuances that we could have 10 or 20 words and they'd all get used, the pressure to use the most serious words for not so serious incidents is confusing IMO and, if it's confusing to me, I think a lot of guys are going to see it and just tune out #metoo completely.

 

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