“Dude, you don’t have to tell me, okay? It’s quite obvious to me that #notallmen are disrespectful twats at best, or just complete monsters at worst. You really think that I—we—need to be told that? I live in a major city, bro. I encounter literally hundreds of men every day. I’ve encountered thousands of men in my lifetime. They’re positively lovely, really, and relatively speaking, very few of them have insulted, threatened, aggravated, or assaulted me. But the few who did, did. And what you problem guys repeatedly refuse to consider is this: One in five hundred may not sound like a lot, but five hundred people come and go pretty quickly in the day-to-day. And That Guy never fails to make his appearance, you dig? N-E-V-E-R. Like clockwork, he shows up to bother me when I am alone, call me a cunt when I ignore him, touch me out of nowhere, take a friendly conversation too far, physically coerce my drunk protesting ass up to his apartment, explain things to me like I am a child, shame me, talk down to me, tell his friends what he thinks of my ass, threaten or humiliate me when I snap back, make me feel unsafe on sidewalks and in parks and at the library, and then dismiss my concerns or complaints when I can’t take it anymore and tell me that I’m overreacting. Or that I should be flattered. Or that I shouldn’t get to enjoy alcohol as freely as my fellow male humans. Or that I should dress more modestly (pro tip: it doesn’t matter if only my face is showing, I still get harassed, so you can go ahead and scrap that sorry piece of “advice” already.)
It’s DEFINITELY not all men. Durrrrrr. It’s not even enough of them to make me stay in my apartment. It’s not enough of them to stop me from waking up every single day determined to see the best in all people despite the shitbirds out there trying to ruin it for everyone. It’s not enough of them to make me re-route my stubborn ass so as not to have to walk by certain places, or stay out of my favorite spots. But you BETTER BELIEVE I’ve encountered enough of them by now to make me hunch my shoulders and avoid eye contact any time I have to walk by or stand near a group of men, or pass a man or two on an empty street. If you can’t sympathize with that, then I really don’t know what else to tell you, dude. Look, we BOTH ALREADY KNOW that nineteen times out of twenty, nothing happens. But what YOU may not know is that That Guy always comes along. Aaaaaalways. And it’s him, not you. So let’s both be mad at him. Let’s both be on the lookout for him. And if you still WANT to make it about YOU when I NEED to talk about HIM, then you can fuck right off. I don’t have time for it.
- what she (author Tominda Adkins) said