Has the #MeToo movement become a witch-hunt to a significant degree?


#974

Since when do phrases such as “completely frivolous” and “attempt to criminalize” need a context? Who made the completely frivolous complaints you are referring to, what is the sexual behavior you believe is normal that someone is trying to criminalize? If they’re complaining with the intention to change prevailing standards but not asking that any law be written or any charges be filed, in what sense are they “criminalizing” anything?

Perhaps you mean the woman who said she got the feeling someone was undressing her with his eyes. Do you really not know what that means? If you don’t think that the way someone chooses to look someone up and down can constitute harrassment, I think you either haven’t been paying attention or haven’t tried to work with someone who makes gestures like that. The poster’s example of having a superior who habitually got physically closer to him than what someone would normally get in a professional setting is an example. People just trying to do their jobs shouldn’t have to put up with that.

Again, when we talk about what we’d dare to do to our bosses or an important client, somehow this all becomes clear and easy. It is only when talking about someone deemed to be in a position that they can’t complain about how we choose to act when the concept all of a sudden becomes difficult for people to grasp.

I’m not buying it. People are very clear about how to respect boundaries when it is in their own interest to do so. I don’t buy it that they’re all of a sudden blind when they’re looking out for the interests of someone who can’t do much if the treatment they’re getting makes it very clear that they aren’t particularly worthy of respect or concern.


#975

I wear many midway down my calves and keep my cleavage covered - never seemed to stop a guy who wanted to bother me.

The worst area I had for harassment was up north. I was pretty well covered simply because it was freezing cold half the year. Bare skin hurt outdoors.


#976

But we don’t need to do that outside court.

Otherwise, you’d need to treat Mattress Girl as innocent of lying until proven guilty.


#977

PR guys are probably more savvy about what goes into professional personal appearance for women.


#978

Eh, do you not realize that “misandrists” are actually the least of your problems? The modern feminists that I agree with are very clear about the fact that normal men are perfectly safe to be around. The trick is learning who isn’t safe to be around, and persuading normal people not to give cover to rape-y guys. (And yes, there are lots of normal people giving cover to sexual assault and abuse–look up the details of the Boston priest sex scandals, Penn State’s Sandusky, or the recent gymnastics scandal.)

Some of the worst things you will ever hear about men come from non-feminists. Here are some things women have heard from “traditional,” “conservative” people in the last 20 years that contribute to fear:

–If you get raped, it’s your fault
–If you report rape or sexual abuse, believing you will be the absolute last option.
–Women are the gatekeepers of sex (and it’s OK for men to keep hammering on the latch until the gate opens) because men have no sexual self-control.
–Men always want sex
–Male libido is totally uncontrollable, so as soon as the launch protocol starts, it’s impossible for him to turn back or stop (as Simcha Fisher said about this view recently “Yes, he can stop. Of course he can stop. What is he, a defective robot?”). This was still very much a thing when I was a young woman in the 90s–it was trotted out as an argument against “no means no.”
–If you’re ever alone with a man, anything bad that happens is your fault!
–If you lose your virginity, you’re wrecked forever!
–Men ought to be able to do whatever they want in marriage and their wives should never say no.

If anything, it’s these views that make men scary–these are views that give men total power, but no responsibility if anything goes wrong.

Bear in mind that being a guy (and a young guy), you have been exposed to very different cultural messaging than women have, especially women who are older and/or from a conservative religious background.


#979

I’d blame myself if I were harassed, but I don’t take compliments as harassment. If someone tried to touch me, sure, I’d blame myself.

Men, in general, really do have a harder time controlling urges than women. I suppose this is to insure the continuation of the race. If men complained about compliments, pats on the back, friendly hugs, etc. like women do the human race would have died out long ago.


#980

Most men always do.


#981

How can single mothers have large families? Promiscuity? IVF?


#982

The PR guys are working for someone else. I’m meeting with my clients, who, for the most part, are celebrities.


#983

Apologies for thread-hogging, but here’s a not-atypical piece from Camille Paglia from 1991:

That’s a 3.5 page article about how terrifying and rape-y men are, and how it’s completely on women to protect themselves, with just their native wit and an immediate police report (and no fair confiding in other women!). It actually reminds me of Constant Learner’s position, which is that women are either supposed to manage everything themselves or turn to the police, with no other options available.

The reason I bring this dusty article up is that my dad gave it to me to read back when it came out in the early 1990s when I was a teenager, and it was just about the only advice my dad ever gave me on the subject. Now that I’m an adult, I think it’s an utterly bizarre point of view. Why would a woman ever want to marry a man or accept men in authority if she believed that men are all sex-crazed lunatics? It’s an argument for the convent or lesbian separatism (Paglia is a lesbian) rather than Christian marriage. (Also, you might ask yourself, if men are all like that, what is the point of turning to the police for help? After all, they’re mostly men, too.)

This is the sort of thing Dark Light and I are talking about–a lot of “traditional” advice just makes men in general sound terrible.


#984

It was more of a thing back in the 1980s and early 1990s, before welfare reform.


#985

So promiscuity. Nice. Definitely not the way to have even one child, let alone several.


#986

Again, my husband HATES being touched without warning.


#987

Most men don’t, and there are some things we just have to live with. I hate rain. I HATE it. I want the sun to shine every day. But it does rain. Infrequently, where I live, but it does rain. The world can’t be “made to order.” That’s a sandwich.


#988

Why not?

Why do the people who want to touch other people get a veto over people who do not wish to be touched? Isn’t that basically the logic of rape, come to think of it–being able to do what one wants with another person’s body?

And the other thing is, your analogy makes it sound like it’s completely uncontrollable.


#989

This may be somewhat of a stereotype. At work, there are about the same percentage of women and men who dislike being touched, and that percentage is about 40%.

I don’t mind, but I’m somewhat elderly and not likely to be considered a “sexual object”.

Of course, the work environment here is very warm and welcoming, so instances of misunderstanding is probably very low.

Other environments, YMMV.


#990

People touch in a friendly manner because it’s human nature to do so. People are social beings, and without friendly touch, they wither and die spiritually, which is probably why so many feminists are unattractive (not referencing anyone here, just in general, and thinking more of those high profile ones on TV).

Premature babies who are not touched frequently often sicken and die even when they should grow and thrive.

Healthy people want and need to be touched. Not by everyone, but by more than a parent, sibling, or spouse.

Rapists are another story. That is mental illness.


#991

Well, I don’t know. Rapists don’t seem to care who their victim is. I know a sixty-something woman who went home for lunch, surprised a burglar, and he raped her before he fled. Now, that is rape, not just touch.

In this day and age, a woman who is “somewhat elderly” can be far more attractive than a young woman, who looks kind of incomplete in a way. Probably because many lack self-confidence and assurance. Self-confidence is very attractive to men.


#992

Sounds like equivocation to me.

I got self confidence to burn. I have been propositioned out on the street. It’s quite interesting how a good hearty laugh deflates many attempts.

This has nothing to do with “friendly touches”. I think there is a herring that reflects 600nm of light at work here.


#993

Of course rape has nothing to do with friendly touches, although some of the posters seem to equate rape with friendly touching.

The question was: Has the #MeToo movement become a witch hunt to a significant degree?

Yes, it has. Men who are sexually harassing right now should be confronted, but women who come forward 10 20, 30 years after-the-fact should keep silent. They are hurting the movement more than helping it. Pretty soon no one will believe any woman, even one who is out-and-out raped. Even our president is defending several serial sexual harassers. That might be because he’s a sexual harasser himself, by his own admission. I believe Bill Cosby, for example, harassed and inappropriately touched women, but I do not believe all the women who say he did. And some kept silent just to save their jobs. That is not right. Had I been on his jury, I would have had to vote for acquittal. And I can’t stand Bill Cosby because he’s so arrogant.


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