They’re completely missing the point of #MeToo.
Rather than responding to the devastating flood of #MeToo stories with empathy and self-reflection, a particularly frustrating subset of men have managed to recenter themselves by expressing how they’re now “afraid” to interact with women.
Why, you may ask, does this newfound fear exist?!
According to these men, the current conversation about sexual harrassment, assault, and rape, has sparked a fear of interacting or being alone with women, because apparently treating women like human beings is a “grey area.”
Since the #MeToo movement addresses everything from verbal sexual harassment to violent rape, concerned parties have bemoaned how they’re now unsure where the line between talking to women and harassing them is.
The backlash has become so normalized that even men who support #MeToo will spout off jokes and comments about being “afraid” of women or getting accused of inappropriate behavior.
Comedian Amy Schumer penned a succinct response to this mess, and why this response completely misses the point of #MeToo.
Agree? pic.twitter.com/YAoccQNtJb— Amy Schumer (@amyschumer) September 19, 2018\n
People in the comments expanded on her point by bringing up the fact that the lines of human decency aren’t new, we’re just shining on light on them once more. Also, interacting with women isn’t complicated if you speak to us and treat us as an equal and not an Other.
Yes.— Matty Worldwide (@MattWorldwide) September 19, 2018\n
Of my own admission, I'm always very suspicious of men who "don't know what to say to women."
They're human, you're human... Do you speak the same language? Then stop assuming you're going to fuck them at some point and ask them about the goddamn weather.
Yes! Guess what- we are always slightly scared to be in a room alone with a man. Welcome to the club.— Anne Reed (@dranne1) September 19, 2018\n
Thats called paranoia....grow up— Rob (@rhapsody718) September 19, 2018\n
Rob, let’s say you’re in a room with an animal that’s assault or harassed 1 out of 6, maybe even 1 out of 3 people it’s been in rooms with. Being afraid is not paranoia, buddy. It’s human nature.— scott mahoney (@scottaustintx) September 19, 2018\n
Seems that a lot of “men” haven’t been “following the rules” for quite some time. There are no new rules. Just don’t sexually assault someone. Seems pretty simple to me.— Travis Taylor (@DaTravboo) September 19, 2018\n
Hopefully, given her platform, Schumer’s words will help some readers understand the potential harm of those responses to #MeToo.