14 April 2019

Are Men Afraid of the #metoo Movement?

Talk about an assumed attitude of privilege which also embraces ageism!  On a news program, today, a young woman was saying one of the negative side-effects of the #metoo movement was that men no longer feel comfortable around young women.  Really?  Really!  I mean Really?!  All I could think was are you sure you don’t want to rethink and reword that comment?

I agree that the
#metoo movement has an effect of  making some men uncomfortable because of fearing they could be falsely accused.  Men, in general, do not deserve to have to be fearful because of those in their ranks who are violators, especially those who are serial offenders.  But woman, in general, also do not deserve to be in fear of being attacked by men, because when they do report violations they are not believed so those who violate get away with violating instead of being apprehended. 

The problem is with dishonesty, and an unwillingness and inability to discern what is and is not factual - to the point of denial which results in a lack of thorough investigation.  The only people who do not invite investigation are the violators and those who enable them.  That is a truism.

It is the men violating who are at the foundation of the fear some men have of being dishonestly accused, not the  woman who  have chosen to report violations and expect to be believed to the point of an investigation being mandatory because of reporting the violation.   If there was not so much refusal to believe woman and investigate the violations they report, then there would not be so much fear in men who are not violators. 

And what about men who may not be sure about whether or not they have been considered violators? Well, wondering, alone, makes a statement.  If a man makes an effort to contact someone he may need to find clarity from, then it is a statement which is an indicator of decency, as long as the intention for contact is not intended to be obnoxious and threatening.

Clearly, the refusal to believe woman is associated with the high numbers of violators, and repeat offenders in particular, who  have the power of influencing others to the point that others choose the corruption of enabling the violators and their offenses.  So it is understandable there has been an increase in some  men fearing they could be unjustly accused.  I think that fear is likely to be directly proportional to the amount of women who are unjustly accused simply because they are not believed and their claims are not properly investigated when they do report violations.

The way to minimize fear is for thorough, objective, investigations which are never subject to the corruption of threats and/or  pay-off by violators who claim their careers and lives will be ruined when they are held accountable.  They, and apparently, the mores of our society have been buying into not ruining the lives of violators, and instead condoning the ruining of the lives of those who were violated. 

And of course it must be stated that some boys and men have been violated, and that some people have been violated by same sex violators. I
t also must be stated that #metoo is not only about sexual assault, rape, unwelcome touching and sexual innuendo in the workplace, but that it is also about harassment of all types in the workplace and everywhere else. 

However,  the issue is about reporting violations which are not believed and not investigated which  becomes a situation that precipitates the fear of  being unjustly accused because of not being believed, and adequate investigation being withheld.  It is the conundrum  of a stereotypical "vicious circle".  In reality logic tells us that the problem is disbelief, and that the only way to alleviate that is to investigate claims until all the facts make evident exactly what happened.  It really is that simple.

What I do not agree with, and what stinks of privilege and ageism in a young woman "of a certain age" who is clearly old enough to know better, is that she said men do not feel comfortable around “young women” - as if older women invited violation, or acquiesced to and wanted to be violated in their younger years - as if they are not still considered potential targets of violation along with anyone else violators want to violate and believe they can get away with violating. 

If it would not come across as sexism and ageism I might say that perhaps part of the problem of fear is actually the attitude of righteous privilege which some young and not so young woman want to assume - those who have not learned the wisdom of extending forgiveness to individuals who give them the opportunity to do so.  When in doubt, extending that opportunity is always the correct choice and the only one which will alleviate fear.