Fishnut wrote: ↑
Fri Mar 26, 2021 10:47 am
I have tried to make allusions without being explicit because I know the overlords and mods want to minimise references to the old place and I respect that. But given the succession of posts that have claimed little to no culpability in the poor treatment of women I feel I must ask those of you who were active on the Badscience forum in 2014-15 to cast your minds back.
Back to a time where we had discussions on whether street harassment of women was as bad as was claimed, discussions about the M&M analogy and whether it was unfair to men, discussions about whether wearing a Hawaiian shirt with naked women on it for a global broadcast on a scientifically significant occasion was appropriate
. In all these discussions, and multiple others women, including myself, were belittled, dismissed, tone-trolled, accused of wanting special treatment, and were even called "shrill" by one poster. Our posts were subjected to a level of scrutiny that male posters, outside of cranks, never received. We constantly faced whataboutery, sealioning, derailing, mansplaining and direct bullying. Multiple women, including myself, left the forum due to our treatment in these threads. Some have never returned.
Now, many of the men who were most active in those threads are not present on this forum, and I doubt many mourn their absence. A few are though. And even more were present but stayed silent. Some of you may have reported posts to the mods, but barely any of you stuck your neck out to call out the harassment and abuse of women that was occurring in front of your eyes. You may claim you didn't see it. Maybe you didn't. It seemed to consume the forum at several stages and there were mass exoduses of posters on both sides but maybe you weren't active in Meaningless Banter, I don't know. But a lot of you were.
So either you saw but didn't recognise what was going on, or you saw but didn't care, or you saw, did care, but were too lazy or scared to get involved. I don't know. Honestly, I don't really care. Things have changed. This forum would never and has never put up with that sh.t and that's why I feel comfortable finally saying this.
The standard you walk past is the standard you accept
. And many of you walked past.
I realise the discussion has moved on but I want to pick up on this to some extent because one of the things which left me a little sick in my throat was the complete disparity between views in this thread and my experience in the thread fishnut mentions above. And that thread was not the only one. There is nothing worse than frequently being told that your lived experience is anecdote, and therefore does not count because it's not data.
It happened a lot and not just to me. In the end, I left the place behind for a considerable amount of time and if I did venture in I stuck to very
limited threads on the so called old place and it's why for a very long time, I never came here.
I've been assaulted in public 4 times and when I was 16, I was subject to some very bad harassment from a 17 year old male in the small town I lived in at the time. On every single one of those times, there were other people present, oblivious to or frankly ignoring the fact that I did not want the "attention" I was getting. People tell me I should be flattered some guy wanted to rub his penis against me in a crowded metro, and it happens all the time, and a PUA artist decided that the correct response to me providing directions was to pull me into him to kiss me and invite me to a sex party. If you are wandering around living under the delusion that people you know, men you know or work with don't do this, and still provide some sort of an illusion that they are fine upstanding men who would never do such a thing, you're wrong. In my experience, 75% of the guys who targeted me were people that presented a reasonable face to society. The first thing men have to stop doing is pretending they don't know people who act like this. Because what happens when they do it is oh, it's only X being X. Or It's only a bit of banter. Or he's joking, or She can't take a compliment or, She's a bit hysterical. How many of your friends have written off their ex-girlfriends in those sort of terms? How many so called psycho girlfriends? In two of the cases I mention above, I would say the guy was drunk behaving a way that all his friends thought was fine. How often do you tolerate that behaviour because "he'd a few drinks and sure, he's a great lad altogether"? This does not mean Random A Woman wants to be Grabbed Kissed by Great Lad Altogether. Doesn't matter if it is New Year's Eve or Wales have just beaten Ireland.
The discussion in the last few pages also regarding men suddenly realising this is an issue when they have daughters is pretty hilarious. I pulled a colleague up on this one. I said to him after he told me his daughters would be kept under strict control, you are just afraid someone will treat them the way you treated young women when you were a kid. It stopped him dead because of course, that was what it was all about.
It's not the daughters you need to look to here, it's the sons.
One of the most insulting things I see mostly on this debate in wider terms than here lately is how women are nothing special here, more men get assaulted. They do, this is true. But the conclusion that gets drawn is that women should shut up they are nothing special and should put up and not
men should stop assaulting people. There's also a difference between what happens men who assault women and men who assault men (significantly less likely to be sexual also). I did not report any of the 4 assaults, because frankly, I don't think the cops would have found any of the four guys - and that was in 3 different countries by the way, and anyway, from my other brushes with police for perfectly reasonable matters, I am not sure they would have wanted to expend anything on it unless I presented a usable case. I lost no blood, after all. Do I feel bad about it? Of course, because next thing is the guilt complex about "protecting others".
But if you are going to pull the notallmen trick or the it happens to men too trick, then you need still to look to the perpetrators and not the victims. Instead we just strongly imply the victims are lying, because of course they must be, a man is innocent until proven guilty, right? This puts victims at an awful disadvantage in a lot of cases, especially where sexual violence or harassment is involved. Proof is hard. I'd like to tell more women to report but what's the point? Even if you get a sympathetic police officer, the system still assumes you are lying and the system depends on assuming an accusation must be false. And I am not sure how you address this because innocent until proven guilty is, in general terms, a good value for a justice system to have. But it does not protect the victims of crime.
tl;dr stop thinking you don't know the men who do this. You almost certainly do. Many of them assume that they absolutely have the right to behave as they do.