You may have seen #YesAllWomen going around lately. It comes in the aftermath of Elliot Rodger’s horrible murders in California. His goal, as seen in a video he made and in his “manifesto” was basically to kill the pretty girls that never gave him the time of day. Thankfully he didn’t get very far. Sadly his three male roommates were also victims.
The point of the #YesAllWomen tag is to say that no, not all men are like Elliot Rodger, but yes, all women have stories of sexism and being around men who are horrible to them. We have all been on the receiving end of catcalls, lewd jokes, etc. The tag is to tell our stories. I’m going to leave some of my own below. Feel free to leave yours in the comments whether you are male or female.
Because when my sister was 13 years old a Deacon in our Church made an example of her when he saw her at the county fair in a spaghetti strap shirt. He took a picture of her without her knowledge and presented it to the Church leadership as an example of how our family doesn’t care about modesty and how certain clothing creates a reaction in men. If you, a fully grown man, can’t keep your thoughts “pure” when you KNOW she’s 13 that is your problem, not hers.
Because when the men at work make lewd comments and sexist jokes and I ask them to stop, I’m the one pulled aside by the boss and told to “stop making people uncomfortable”.
Because I posted a quote on FB from a man telling his son that “a women’s body is not dangerous. It won’t cause you to sin” and a Christian man told me that God sees me as a “pig with a nose ring in”, quoting a verse from the Old Testament. When I reminded him that the OT says I should have long hair, not wear pants and not have tattoos and that the same goes for his wife and daughters he told me that he “didn’t need to address those issues because God already has”.
Because I was at the beach with my sister and she was “proud” when we were catcalled and only angry when I explained things to her. Because we live in a world where it’s shameful to not be catcalled and it means you’re not “pretty enough”.
#YesAllWomen because there are too many men on the “#YesAllWomen” tag on twitter who say horrible things in support of Elliot Rodger and his actions. Because there are Facebook groups called “We Love Elliot Rodger” and “Support Elliot Rodger” that Facebook refuses to take down even though they are actively in support of a misogynistic killer.
Because when I am angry people automatically assume I’m on my period. Because they think my emotions are controlled by my uterus. Even my female friends ask “are you on the rag?” because they have been raised in a world that thinks that question is
a) appropriate b) relevant in any way.
Because every Military female I know has been told by someone in her chain of command that she must wear makeup in uniform when male DV’s come to base.
#YesAllWomen because my Mother does not truly believe that women should be equal.
Because last week on Facebook a 29 year old man on my brother’s friend list called my 16 year old sister “hot” and said he would “totally do her”. When I tried to explain all of the things wrong with that my brother said “this is going to get good. I’m getting popcorn” instead of helping and the man raged at me about how, “you may be hot on the outside but inside you’re just an ugly, lonely, loser who can’t take a compliment”.
#YesAllWomen because the first thing my Dad did when I announced I was joining was look up the rape statistics in the Military and then try and forbid me.
Because my Dad was right.
Because in Seventh grade I ran for class Treasurer and won but when I ran for President in Sophomore year I was told by the male candidates that “girls aren’t smart enough to be in charge”.
These are some of my stories but there are so many more and I’m sure you can add a plethora. #YesAllWomen is not saying that “all men are like that” but that all women have felt like this and that we all need a voice.