We are in the midst of an awakening within our society. People, men and women alike, are beginning to hold each other accountable for unacceptable behaviors.
Women no longer need to remain tight lipped with grace over inappropriate behaviors, comments, or actions towards them or their bodies.
Women no longer need to, “smile and giggle” when there’s an unwanted ass grab.
Women no longer need to accept unsolicited dick pics in private message while active on social media.
Men no longer need to remain “tough” and carry the persona of “strength” when bullied, belittled, or mocked for showing emotion.
Men no longer have to hide their “less than masculine” hobbies or interests. I have male friends who find that over the last 10-20 years, aspects of their “male persona” have changed. “I used to be uncomfortable with my wife’s purse in our cart. Now, I just don’t care.”
Men are even allowed to show support in one another without it looking, “Gay”.
If toxic masculinity is, as Piers Morgan says, “… pathetic global assault on masculinity,” then why is it even a hot topic? What I am finding is that men who are offended, protesting, and boycotting like Piers Morgan, are avoiding the question of whether or not they’re actually guilty of these very behaviors.” (compiled with the fact that a lot of them I’m reading on social media haven’t actually WATCHED the video). Don’t come at me with your defensiveness if you haven’t fully educated yourself on the topic at hand.
Just to be clear, Gillette’s ad does not implicate all men as those who act in this manner. This ad promotes that all men should hold each other accountable by calling out the behaviors.
This is not attacking “all” men for this behavior, it’s attacking the behavior itself. If those seeing this as an attack on “all men’s” masculinity, then it’s not the commercial with the issue, it’s your perception of masculinity that is.
“The gender doth protest too much, me thinks. “
Maybe it’s time to actually discuss and define, “Toxic Masculinity”? What I have found researching the new coined term, “…a manifestation of Patriarchy that both harms men, and causes men to be violent and aggressive against women and occasionally other men.”
Personally, for me, it is when we even need to call out “boys will be boys” mentality. It’s when we tell girls that, “…it means he likes you if he pulls your hair”, as opposed to teaching our sons that pulling hair is not way to express your crush on a person.
Or, the doxxing of female game programers, artists, geeks, nerds, cosplayers, and activists who fight against the men who feel women have no place in the gaming cyber geek world.
Women, such as Brianna Wu, had all of their personal information released online opening avenues of abuse from men worldwide. “One tweet said, “I’ve got a K-bar and I’m coming to your house so I can shove it up your ugly feminist cunt.”
If you do not see an issue with this, then the problem isn’t Gillette, again, it’s you and your belief systems.
Another example of abuse because of gender and nationality, Kelly Marie tran. Who had this to say when she penned a beautiful statement as to why she’s leaving social media. She was mocked and harassed for everything from gender to weight, from role to ethnicity. The attackers took open hunt on her instagram and even her woookiepedia page.
Their words seemed to confirm what growing up as a woman and a person of color already taught me: that I belonged in margins and spaces, valid only as a minor character in their lives and stories,” Tran wrote. “Their words reinforced a narrative I had heard my whole life: that I was “other,” that I didn’t belong, that I wasn’t good enough, simply because I wasn’t like them. And that feeling, I realize now, was, and is, shame, a shame for the things that made me different, a shame for the culture from which I came from. And to me, the most disappointing thing was that I felt it at all.”
Or, how schools push and shame their preteen to teen girls about their clothing, as opposed to teaching boys to respect women and their bodies, and then punish them for wearing shorts and tank tops in 102 degree weather.
Our daughters are raised with vile, sexually charged advertising in EVERYTHING, but then shamed if they immulate the very examples they’re taught. Toxic masculinity is defending and promoting advertisers like Abercrombie & Fitch or Carl’s Jr, who make a point of objectifying women, and encouraging the behaviors behind it. There’s even a study that shows men and women (BOTH) are affected mentally by these types of advertisers. (Sited Resource) This study has found that sexualized advertisements could have a negative effect on men as well as women .
Final example of toxic masculinity, in my eyes, are the sheer number of sexual violence and assaults that do not get reported. Why? Because women aren’t taken serious when they say they are victims.
Do you know how many rape kits have sat unopened, unexamined, untested? In my state, Washington State, according to a 2018 statewide inventory conducted by the Attorney General’s Office, 6,460 backlogged. If that’s just one state, imagine the numbers for our whole nation. It doesn’t help when certain celebrities promote these ideals.
If toxic masculinity isn’t a thing, there wouldn’t be NUMEROUS social media pages dedicated to showing that women are property/meat, and men deserve all of it no questions asked….
Because, as Piers Morgan says, “Let boys be damn boys. Let men be damn men. Sexually harasses coanchor.
Women Women Refuse
Addressing Gender-Based Harassment in Social Media: A Call to Action
Rachel N. Simons, The University of Texas at Austin
End the Backlog – Accountability Project by Joyful Heart Foundation