I love the Lego Movie so much, and I connected with Unikitty’s thinly-veiled anger issues on a spiritual level, so I figured I’d make an animation out of the (clearly) most important character.
FAKE GEEK GUYS: A MESSAGE TO MEN ABOUT SEXUAL HARASSMENT
By Andy Khouri
“I think this woman is wrong about something on the Internet. Clearly my best course of action is to threaten her with rape.”
That’s crazy talk, right? So why does it happen all the time?
Honest question, dudes.
That women are harassed online is not news. That women in comics and the broader fandom cultures are harassed online is not news. That these women are routinely transmitted anonymous messages describing graphic sexual violence perpetrated upon them for transgressions as grave as not liking a thing… that is actually news to me, and it’s probably news to a lot of you guys reading this.
So what do we do about it?
This is important.
Read this, it’s important.
ESPECIALLY if you’re a man. If you’re a woman, it’ll just be comforting. It won’t tell you a single thing new. But this is how we need men to engage with feminism. I’ve talked a bit recently about how men who seek to dominate feminist discoure because they think they understand it better than women need to STFU. And I’ve received a fair number of negative, ignorant comments from men about that (thankfully, no rape threats, but it still wasn’t nice) and some of them very definitely were written with the intention of silencing me from speaking about feminism, in defence of a male idea of what ‘true’ feminism should be. But, despite what most of the deliberate misreadings interpreted me as saying, I did not say and do not think that men should not have a voice in feminism.
Men have an important voice and an important role to play. And the most important thing a man can do if he wants to support equality is to step up and talk to other men about the damage they do, about the toxic opinions they hold and assume are the majority opinion. These guys keep thinking this rubbish and acting on this rubbish because they do not see it challeneged by any one of consequence (they do not view women as of consequence, and they do everything in their power to silence women and to make us feel worthless, and that our opinions are worthless). They think their opinion is the majority view. And if you think they are wrong, it’s your job to speak up and show them that they are not speaking for all men.
Did a woman just say ‘Ugh, men do x-really-shitty-thing’? Did you have an impulse to say ‘Not ALL men!’ Here’s the radical new idea: do not say to her ‘Not ALL men!’, instead, when you see the thing she’s objecting to in other men, tell THAT guy ‘STFU - you may think that all men agree with you, but we bloody don’t!’.
Women are not the people who need to hear that not all men are sexist pigs. Men are.
Men need to know that they do not have solidarity in their own gender if they express sexist opinions. Men need to know that some men are not sexist. Men need to know that some men are feminist. Men need to know that some men will stand up to them when they try to present a united front against women.
This guy, Andy Khouri, writing this article? He’s got delivering some truth bombs to other men about this shit. If you’re a man, read it. It may contain some bombs you hadn’t been hit with yet. It definitely does contain some good advice about how you can start being part of the solution, and not a bystander. Because bystanders are not innocent, here, they are part of the problem. Quoth he:
Sexual harassment isn’t an occupational hazard. It’s not a glitch in the complex matrix of modern life. It’s not something that just “happens.” It’s something men do. It’s a choice men make. It’s a problem men enable. It’s sometimes a crime men commit…
It’s on us.
Sexism. Harassment. Misogyny. Not with my superheroes. No, that’s some fake geek guy bullsh*t right there.