I’ve been following this extremely huge debate about sexism that has been going on for weeks and I haven’t commented quite much on it. It seems like everyone has a really strong opinion about it and probably has been through a lot of experiences concerning this topic. So it’s loaded with so many strong emotions. That’s why it’s quite hard to find a neutral solution. So what I did over the last weeks was reading a lot of articles about it, that have almost always been bullshit in my opinion, and analyzing loads of comments and discussions about the subject. I’ve come to a conclusion which not all of of you might agree with, I mean I’ve had just as many personal experiences with sexual harassment and abuse as anyone else, but I really put a lot of effort in trying to understand all the depths of the issue. And I think that most people approach this problem in a wrong way.
The #metoo-movement went viral. The problem is just that it has been used in a wrong way. Excluding men from feminism is just really stupid and naive, because you cannot solve a problem with keeping it away from the ones that mainly cause it. It‘s like being mad at someone but not telling them why, so you can’t discuss the problem and find a way out. That behaviour reminds me of naive children that cannot handle problems at all. So what we have to do instead is starting an actual conversation about sexism with everyone, including men.
Some people have actually mistaken what this #metoo-movement is about. It is about sexual abuse, rape and any kind of sexual harassment. This does not really include everyday sexism such as lower wages for females or the simple fact that they have a vagina instead of a penis. And it is something completely different than for example the #ohnemich (#withoutme) hashtag, because this one is about not wanting to dress up in a way that is considered as feminine, not wearing make up, because we shouldn’t define these appearances as feminine, as beautiful or as any kind of standard. It’s about feeling comfortable in our bodies by being who we are, not what we look like. It is about being respected as who we are. AND respecting everyone else the way they are. So mixing up these to hashtags is just stupid, because it’s not about not wearing make up or dressing femininely to avoid getting sexually attacked. So please stop trying to use these two seperate movements in the same context.
Simply bombarding the internet with hashtags, but not knowing what they are about, not knowing what you’re talking about? That’s not enough.
But these hashtags aren’t everything this whole discussion is about. Concurrently we’re still debating about everyday sexism that I mentioned earlier, concerning lower wages, stupid comments and accusations we get to hear each and every day simply by being female. The German newspaper Die Zeit recently asked their female readers to send in sexist comments they got or situations they were in at their workplaces. Afterwards they published all the stories and I was shocked about how many and how rude they were. And it was huge and impressive. And great to see that we are not alone with what we have to conquer. But they destroyed the story with something they posted about a week later: They interviewed five different women about how they would react on some of the stories and sexist comments the women sent in. And I was really mad, because the problem isn’t solved by that. It’s not done by knowing how to react on sexist comments and sexual harassment. It’s solved when we stop having to hear such sexual assaults and defamations.
So all I want to ask you is to stop making this a female problem, because it’s not. It’s also mainly a problem in some mens’ heads, thinking that it’s okay to act like that. It’s anchored in our society. So we just have to start confronting men, we have to start talking to them, we have to actively include everyone in the sexism debate, no matter what gender they identify as.