This past weekend, a young man posted a video about how he hated women for rejecting him. How he was going to get retribution by shooting up a sorority house. And that’s precisely what he did. The normal topics after a mass shooting came out. We need more gun control! We need more mental health awareness! Topics that we’ll all forget about in a week or so.
But more terrifying, is that from some of the darker corners of the internet there were men sympathizing with the shooter. Saying explicitly that this happened because women rejected him. And of course when it was pointed out that this was a hate crime, that the shooter did it because he felt he deserved to have sex with women who rejected him, the cries of “Not all men are like that” took hold. It is from here that #YesAllWomen was born.
You guys know how I normally feel about “hashtag activism” or any other method of memifiying important issues. But #YesAllWomen is different. #YesAllWomen is women telling their stories of everyday sexism. Stories that help men realize what women go through on (often) a daily basis.
Sharing our stories is important. Because honestly, if we don’t talk about it, men don’t realize there is a problem. Time and time again I’ll see a post about sexist behavior at conventions, and there will be a comment along the lines of “none of the women I know have stories like this.” Which I find unlikely. What is more likely, is that the behavior is so common that we don’t mention them.
I think of my own experience at Gen Con last year, when my husband was getting answers to questions I asked. And how I just brushed it off because I’m used to it. I think about Wil Wheaton saying that conventions are a “safe place,” which I’m sure is true for Wil Wheaton. But if they were, Cosplay is Not Consent wouldn’t be needed.
So tell your stories ladies, and be heard.
Though he mentioned females more than he did males in his manifesto, his resentment and anger was with anyone who was sexually active. Males and females. Showing this is the fact that 4 of his 6 victims were sexually active males and his NUMEROUS rants about hating men who were not virgins. Also, I would like to point out that over half of the victims were stabbed to death. None of this is sympathizing, just some interesting facts that I’ve seen left out of most articles on the subject.