So anyone that has been on twitter has probably noticed the #YesAllWomen hashtag trending the past few days. It started after the horrific shooting spree in Isla Vista on Friday night. The shooter, as we’ve come to learn, was Elliot Rodger whose writings and videos showed someone who hated women. I made the mistake of viewing a video, it’s frightening and surreal and seemed less realistic than something you’d see on a TV crime show.
The #YesAllWomen hashtag was intended to share those things that many of us deal with daily, even without thinking. Some still deal with outright sexual harassment in the workplace, some have been attacked or abused. But there are so many little things that become part of you. Checking your planned route when coming home late, being escorted to your car after dark, ignoring catcalls when you walk down the street, subsequently ignoring the “bitch” that follows when you don’t respond (are you supposed to say thanks? really?).
I’ve personally been called a bitch more times than I can recall, in such an abundance of situations, that the term has lost any meaning. In the workplace, on a plane when I failed to engage in conversation (I guess the noise canceling headphones and open book weren’t enough of a hint), in conversations when I dare express my point of view in an intelligent manner.
Now this is certainly not all men and I’m not about to change what I do and where I go because a few act like neanderthals. But it made me think, personally, about all these mindless precautions I takes all the time. Men don’t worry about that, and maybe some of this discussion will help everyone realize how misogyny is still affecting our day-to-day life even in 2014.