I’m going to need men to slow your roll on the #NotAllMen line-toeing with this “Not In My Locker Room” line of bull because women have overheard you our entire lives. We. Hear. You. Maybe you didn’t pay attention, maybe you didn’t hear it, maybe in a society that thrives on the subjectification and objectification of women it didn’t even register as noteworthy, or maybe there’s a very small chance that your locker room was the one place where men weren’t speaking like this. So maybe it’s not in your locker rooms but it’s in your bars, on your streets, in your precious bleachers at your precious sporting events, in your schools, your frat houses, your parties, on your construction sites, and in your board meetings. Women are dehumanized by men at every turn.
We hear it. We hear you.
There’s been a ton of men putting themselves up on moral high horses the last 18 hours but women get assaulted EVERY SINGLE DAY. Every day. If you were all so morally just, so big on boundaries and consent, so big on respect, we wouldn’t have hashtags like #yesallwomen and #notokay. We wouldn’t have rape statistics that are horrifying. We wouldn’t have the Brock Turners of the world getting three months in jail and walking away. We wouldn’t have to deal with the fact that he spent more time in jail than 97% of rapists. We wouldn’t have women sharing stories of their first assaults that took place in elementary school.
And you sure as hell wouldn’t be OH SO SHOCKED by women’s stories of assault if you listened to us to begin with and believed what we told you.
Listen to women. Believe us. Don’t downplay our fears. Don’t write off predatory behavior. Don’t tell us we worry too much or he was just being nice. Don’t tell us we should take it as a compliment.
So no, you don’t get a pat on the back for condemning Trump. You just don’t. Not when you allow the same behavior to go on in every other area of life. You don’t get to feel like an advocate for women because you say you didn’t like his language choices. You don’t get to pretend to be an ally when you have to frame it as “well I have a daughter/sister/wife/mother so it bothers me” and can’t see that it’s a problem because it’s happening to women as human beings regardless of their relations. If you have to relate harassment to someone you personally know in order to comprehend it and condemn it, you need to do better.
This behavior? We see it every day and it
impacts everything women do.
This is why we go to bathrooms in pairs.
This is why we wear headphones.
This is why we lie and say we have a boyfriend.
This is why we carry pepper spray.
This is why we tell our friends to text us when they make it home safely.
This is why we carry our car keys between our fingers.
This is why we check the backseat before we get in the car.
This is why we’ve trained ourselves to never leave a drink unattended.
This is why.
This is why.
This is why.
You say you haven’t heard it in your spaces. Is it not there or are you just not paying attention? Because women hear it, see it, and feel it every day.