Wednesday, August 26, 2009

NY Times Op Ed re Misogyny in US

Op-Ed Columnist re Misogyny in The USA

This is an article from the NY times from 8/8/09. The author makes some very succinct and pointed remarks about the apathy of Americans to the violence of our society to women, just because they are women. It opens with excerpts from a mass woman killer's blog who ranted for a full month about the wrongs women have done him before attacking a womens aerobics group, including wounding the pregnant instructor.

Especially poignant is the reference to the 2006 Amish shootings at the schoolhouse where the killer, separated the boys from the girls, shooting 10 of them and killing five girls. Wouldnt we be more upset if a killer separated the groups by race or religion and chose his victims that way? We have become so innured to the deaths and attacks on women, partly because it is a foundation of our nightly entertainment, so much of it is found on the news, that one more death or mass shooting of women barely makes a blip on our radar.

When is this attitude going to change? I say when we begin to talk openly about it! It is unacceptable to me that we glorify rape and perversion and violence, reinstating athlete's atatus after perpetrating violence. Or looking up to role models that are "bad boys". What is that saying to the victim? It says you are not as valuable, it is ok to do these things as long as one feels justified.

He has some salient points about why we allow this to keep happening.

I was in a meeting recently and a man kept referring to women as money hungry bitches, that we only wanted one thing, I ve heard the same person denigrate his mother and his sister. And no one in there said anything about his choice of words ( freedom of speech). I finally spoke up to say that I found derogatory comments towards one group, regardless of who or what they worshipped, was disruptive and divisive. Except I couldnt get that far before this man, threw a book, slammed a chair into a table and called me vile names and stomped around the room. One other woman took offense that I took offense. another man yelled at me, and I held my ground, stating calmly that it was my opinion just like it was his right to cuss women.

Sometimes it takes a thick skin to speak out against things. I do not profess to know all the answers, nor do I recommend doing things as I do. I tend to spend alot of time with fear or hurt feelings and "learning to grow". But can I do anything else knowing how I feel about womens mistreatment? Not all are willing to pay the consequences of speaking out, but I chose to do so because my past might help another person learn or think outside of their comfort zone.

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