By now this hashtag has probably appeared more than once in your feed and (unfortunately) many more will share in the days to come. You’ve most likely heard more than you’d like to about the Weinstein saga and what appears to be an accepted culture in Hollywood, but as this hashtag spreads it should by now be very clear to all that this is by no means an exception. It is something that is so common that us women need a hashtag to even reflect over it. Yes #MeToo. All of us. In our day to day lives. My husband heard about it on BBC (as he’s not on social media) and asked if I’d used the hashtag, I had earlier that day and he looked at me a bit surprised. Then he recalled the dick pic I’d received some time back but I told him it’s not just that. Its every day, every time I walk down the street, fully covered like a nun never mind in heat reaching 30+ on a cool day. In my case it is not the one time that was really bad (thankfully!) but the hundreds of times there was a comment to intrusive, a comment that made me uncomfortable, from strangers that think they can say what they want about me, and to me. It’s all the times I’ve put trousers on when shorts should’ve been the obvious choice but you know the comments would be so much worse. It’s every woman following an unwritten dress code made up in some men’s heads. It’s all the women living in a culture where they are blamed for men’s behavior, when debates like these turn into debates about how women should and shouldn’t dress.
I’m actually surprised that the hashtag #NotAllMen hasn’t had a revival yet. As at times like these “good” men tend to feel they have to defend themselves. I hope this time around the good men realize that if they look the other way they are part of the problem. Quoting a (male) friend on facebook: “The #MeToo campain has been a great eyeopener for me. For many women it’s just day-to-day life. It has made me think a lot. About other men’s behavior, but also my own. That is always a start.” I hope the #MeToo can be an eyeopener for men as much as it has been everyday life for most women.
Let this be a new beginning.