November 12, 2016

Toxic Man

Back in the heyday of this blog it was a regular feature of mine to denounce macho misogynist nonsense and to champion feminism. I didn't leave it off because I thought everything was fixed; far from it. But there were signs of hope.

The twitter storm of misogyny that surrounded campaigns to get women on banknotes, for example, did not get in the way of success. I tried, as best as I could, to see such public hate as representative of the death throes of a soon to be extinct monster. Toxic man had been given license, through social media, to be the loudest empty vessel. But there was much more reason to be optimistic in my variety of metropolitan bubbles than there were reasons to be pessimistic. Among men in my world, to champion feminism had become a commonplace. When Canada bucked the trend last year and lurched left, those who value equality of treatment and opportunity welcomed what looked like a substantial breakthrough: a male leader who called himself a feminist, sounded like he knew what he meant by it, and called on parents to educate their sons on the matter. I thought a corner had been turned. Looks like I was wrong.

Image result for rape culture

The alarming shift to the right in polities across the world has opened up a crack where toxic man's confidence grows like black mould in the dank locker room at the end of the world. Emboldened by irresponsible hate speech and rape speech, by the utterances of men in positions of power, the lecherous mob has seen fit to step into the light. The largely white masculine TV news media (especially in the US) will not sufficiently condemn it. They have helped create it, after all.

It is not and never has been manly to lord a superiority complex over women and in fact bespeaks cowardice, want of feeling, brainlessness and a deeply warped view of the world. Men who embrace sexual predation, the objectification of women's bodies, and the diminution of women's minds, are not worthy of a place in our societies, let alone a place of leadership. They are not powerful, but they are dangerous. Their credo is violence. When they brazenly occupy not only the social ether but also the streets, becoming a tangible physical and sexual threat, they deserve more than our contempt and condemnation. Step up! If you see something, intervene. Don't stand idly by. Call the police. Now is not the time to be a mouse.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts with Thumbnails