I think sometimes we forget that men are also victims of sexual harassment, sexual assault, and rape. #YesAllWomen is a movement to point out the overwhelmingly common experiences all women share, but should never undermine others, who may not identify as a woman, who have shared those experiences as well.
It’s really nice to hear that. I think the reason I was feeling so jaded about it at all is because while I could relate to just about everything that was presented in that video, I felt isolated by my own male-ness. And of course I think you know (and anyone who knows me would know) that I would never be the guy to pull a “but not ALL men” kind of stunt. But this isn’t about being lumped into a negative behavior of contemporary males and trying to be the exception—this is about being almost overlooked as a fellow victim and wanting others to understand that you have been hurt like they have. That you can identify in solidarity. You can be a support, too, despite the fact that you might be a man, a member of that group who often perpetrates such wickedness and boorish behavior.
I have such an odd relationship with feminism when it comes down to it. I am undeniably a white cis-gendered male, but I am also a homosexual. I feel the plight of the homosexual male in so many ways parallels that of women, and I think that is why I identify so strongly with feminist ideals. I have experienced a lot of the same kind of bullying, harassment, and sexual violence from members of even my own community and of course from those who do not understand and deride my lifestyle. I will never ever understand what it means to be a woman, but I think I do understand some of the negative experiences that come with womanhood: objectification, bullying, victimization, etc. in ways that perhaps some heterosexual males cannot understand.
It is so existentially troubling to want to participate in a movement that you feel does not have much of a place for you. I really wish the word feminism did not exist. In modern culture, that term connotes something so different than what it aspires to, and buzzfeed and twitter make that apparently clear, especially when you see all of these pictures of girls saying why they don’t need feminism. It also makes it seem like a special interest group, where the goal is girl power and where only girls are allowed, but I know that is really not the case. Maybe Tina is right and we should just call it common sense. Then maybe more people would relate and get on board with it all more quickly. It is honestly taking too long.