Sexual Harassment Is A Man's Problem

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Over the past week, Harvey Weinstein has been outed (and ousted) as a sexual harasser and predator. He joins a long list of men in power who abuse their positions and coerce, threaten, and manipulate women. Alyssa Milano's efforts to showcase the magnitude of the issue went viral with her hashtag #metoo. To say that the entire situation is pathetic does not truly encapsulate the issue. Moreover, as I read through various comments across articles and social media, I'm greeted with shortsighted, borderline misogynistic thoughts of people blaming the women who were victimized. To those people: shut it. 

To my dismay and disgust women get hurt, threatened, coerced, and abused every single day—the details of which I will not type out in this rant. Not because it's not important for awareness (because it is). Not because it makes me physically sick to think about and discuss these things (because it does). I don't want to focus on the woman's side of these problems... because these behaviors are not the problems of women. Yes, these issues impact women (in profoundly ugly ways), but they reflect other deep-rooted issues.

THESE BEHAVIORS ARE A REFLECTION OF PROBLEMS WITH MEN.

ALL men? Hardly... but too many to count. Men who are broken, insecure, controlling, mentally screwed up, and/or violent. Men who need to compensate for their own shortcomings and lack of real strength and masculinity by intimidating, manipulating, coercing, and/or inflicting pain on women—women who aren't in a position to backdown because the gatekeeper to their career is withholding access that can only be gained through unwanted sexual activity.

By calling these "women's issues", we are adding insult to injury by subliminally blaming women and asking them to work through what these men put them through. Stop it. Women in these situations aren't at fault. 

THESE BEHAVIORS ARE A REFLECTION OF PROBLEMS WITH MEN.

These behaviors are indicative of men who are vacant of empathy. Men who are emotionally bankrupt and lack any measurable humanity. In short: horrors of human beings. Women caught up in these situations are first victimized, and then quietly villainized. It is long-time to lay the accountability where it belongs: with these male cowards who are only men because of the gender they were assigned at birth.

 

 
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I know, I know. I'll get a rush of email from men who will angrily spout: "It's not all men, Charles! You are blaming all men! I don't coerce women! I don't hit or abuse them! This isn't a problem with me!" Quite to the contrary, Brother. This is your problem, just like it's my problem. We are supposed to stand up with honor for what is right... for what is just... and protect those who are not able to protect themselves. That's what men do. That's what people do. So if you are comfortable resting on your passive laurels, opulent with your silent assertions that because you aren't doing it then it doesn't matter... then you are an accomplice. Maybe if it were your daughter, or mother, or sister, you wouldn't be so quick to bury your head in the sand and claim that you have no involvement.

THESE BEHAVIORS ARE A REFLECTION OF PROBLEMS WITH MEN.

Perhaps I’ll get inevitable: “Charles, you are full of sh*t! Domestic violence and harassment are 50/50 these days! There are thousands of men who are abused at the hands of women every day!” That might be true… but it hardly nullifies my points here. Women are being hurt. The fact that some men are also doesn’t make it better or even… it makes it all wrong. Don't cloud this issue with one of your own. 

Men: STAND UP. Stop sitting down and lowering your head, pretending this is someone else's issue to solve. As we pour more and more and more time, money and effort into programs that help these women pick up the broken pieces of their lives after they have experienced abuse, we are continually failing to recognize that we are too damned late. Where is the accountability before these women are hurt, their life paths fundamentally altered without their consent? We are still focused on—and attempting to fix—the symptom. It's time to cure the sickness. Assign your sense of masculinity to a sense of self-worth, esteem, honor, integrity, and courage... which also includes to stand up and stare back into the face of adversity to stop these broken cycles of blatant abuse and sexual harassment We are all responsible to change this. And as to anyone who refuses to stand up and alter the present for women in abusive environments... SIT DOWN your passive aggressive asses down so you aren't in my way as I strive toward change.

Should we all donate our time and effort to bettering life for those who have been affected by abuse? You bet. Should we protect our daughters by being present… by being a fathers and mothers. Should we instill in young women a sense of self-esteem and self-worth, that way if they meet the wrong men, they will leave without taking damage? Of course. But more importantly, we need to work with boys and men and explain clearly...

A woman who smiles at a man isn't hinting that she wants you.

A woman walking down the street nude isn't accessible sexually. 

A woman visiting a man she just met at his house isn't "asking for sex."

A woman who wants to advance her career doesn't need to unlock access with her vagina.

Why all this needs to be said is probably the worst part of these issues. The fact that we need to explain something as basic as dignity and honor to men of this kind is confounding. Today, I'm ashamed... and I vow to take action... starting now.

 
 






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