"If you have followed the #yesallwomen tag, then I'm sure you have heard the 1/10 M&Ms or chocolate chip cookies analogy by now. Last week, before the shooting, I would have agreed, yeah, not all men, and not even most men. But after the interactions I have had online, the conversations and comments on my feeds and on friends' feeds, I have changed my mind. Maybe 1 in 10 men will own assault rifles and go out to murder multiple women, but of the 9 that don't have assault rifles at the ready? Those 9 out of 10 M&Ms won't kill me instantly from cyanide, but at least 5 of them will give me violent food poisoning, and of the remaining 4, 2 will give me diarrhea. One will just be a regular M&M, minding its own business and not speaking up, and the last remaining one may actually taste good and be a really yummy M&M (who will speak up and call out dudebros on their sexist, misogynistic bullcrap)."
If you are one of those "not like that" men, where are you? What are you doing? Are you speaking up?
I have heard a few of you. A handful. You have joined in on comment threads. Some of you have actively, assertively called out the dudebros and their misogyny/sexism/entitlement. Thank you. I needed to hear your voice. I needed to see you, to know you exist.
I want to see the rest of you. Where are you?
If you're listening, great. Thank you.
But if you're listening, then you must be hearing the same things I'm hearing. Why aren't you responding?
I have heard a handful of men start a conversation. John Scalzi, which is awesome because he's a cis, het, white guy with a huge platform, and a sci-fi author. I'm sure you've seen screenshots of his statements, even if you don't follow him.
There's another screenshot that's been going around; I didn't recognize the name, but thank you, white dude, for speaking up and talking to your fellow white dudes and telling them to stop being dudebros.
Last Sunday, my (cis, het, white male) pastor talked about the UCSB shooting, Miss Representation, sexism, and how we're taught to objectify women. And how that needs to stop, and that the church needs to be a part of stopping it.
Today, another (ELCA Lutheran, cis, het, white male) pastor posted a draft of a column he's writing about the #yesallwomen tag. (Someone said his writing on the topic could be considered "mansplaining" and that triggered my angry rant, which included the quote above.)
It is important that we listen to women's voices. It is important that you listen to women's voices. But this is not a conversation we can have alone. We need privileged voices to join us, to speak up too. These conversations need to happen outside the circle of women. You, men, need to engage in these conversations--respectfully. Engage in, don't dominate. Start these conversations in circles where they aren't already happening. Share what you have learned from what you have listened and will continue to listen. (PS: no, you're never done listening. No one ever is. Keep listening. PPS: that goes for women, too--especially us cis, het, white, able-bodied women.)
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