Can I ask a favor from my men friends/readers?
Please search #MasculinitySoFragile on twitter or just click here.
Backstory (about abuse of women by men):
So I’m clearly a feminist
/ I care about women.
Earlier today I read about some horrible shit that has happened to different women in the last month in intimate relationships. FeministaJones had posted it on her website’s Facebook. It messed me up, I shared it and then I went about my day. But it came back around to me and it pissed me off so much. All I could think about was how at its core, my silence as a man is complicity in the abuse of women. Yeah I talk about my love for women, but not enough. Yeah I do #SayHerName but that’s not enough.
Men literally kill women for nothing, because of to assert dominance, patriarchy, and embody male entitlement. Men feel like they own women. Period. Even when they don’t realize it. Our male privilege blind us to the ways that we dehumanize woman, reducing them to mere body parts.
But this isn’t just physical and these behaviors are not limited to straight men. As queer men we often rely on women for emotional labor but do not compensate them for that time. Whether it be our mothers, our girlfriends, or our friends, we rely on women every damn day, often without reciprocation. We rely on women, and often women of color to give us support without actually offering that support back. So I went on a long series of tweets about domestic violence, abuse, rape, and other forms of violence under the hashtag #MasculinitySoFragile. I’m not the first to use the hashtag, but I continued a conversation tonight that women–and Black women in particular–have been having for centuries. This ain’t new, but people love to listen to men talk about it while ignoring the women who taught men about it (like my mom, Feminista Jones, Trudy at Gradient Lair, or the countless friends I have had).
I wanted to expose the ways in which we, as men, protect other men by not speaking up about the abuse. I’ve written a lot about white entitlement, but male entitlement is a disgusting thing as well because of the particularly toxic form of masculinity it breeds. We protect hegemonic (or dominant and mainstream) masculinities that are rooted in misogyny. There are multiple forms of masculinity, and we cannot subscribe to any notions that lead to the death of women because they didn’t say “hi” back to a man or because they called the name of the wrong lover in bed. We need to put our egos to the side to build with women without them having to be our relative or spouse. Our silence is figurative blood on our hands, and I won’t have it. I want us to work toward a world where hashtags like #YouOkSis–where women discuss daily harassment from men–are no longer necessary.