Thursday, March 31, 2016

"Feminist" videos




Per usual, I spend quite a bit of time on social media. However, what I've recently witnessed is a slew of misinformation about what feminism is and how that can be exemplified. I think you can argue back and forth with someone a thousand times over about a status that they post or something that say, but sometimes it's hard to pull in the reigns of a video that's gone viral on social media.

One video that may not directly be associated with feminism or the treatment of women is a video about men going up and down escalators in the mall. While on the escalator, they brush the hand of a man on the opposite direction escalator and look at them like objects, inspecting them and their bodies. The video has gone absolutely viral as "the love escalator prank." I'm not going to tell you that it's not funny, but there's something extremely unsettling about it. Some of the men threaten to fight each other and scream at the men who caressed their hands. At first, there's a part of me that wants to tell that man to stop being so aggressive and to stop responding with such anger. However, then there's a part of me that is so supportive of this man. My thoughts are, if you were touched in public, against your will, and stared at like a piece of meat, feeling out of control of your body, wouldn't you react in such a way?

This video is both frustrating to me and an educational learning experience for me because this may help men understand how women feel on a daily basis.

Often times, I have been grazed against or touched inappropriately in public and at bars and at public transportation centers, and I have brushed it off. Subsequently deciding to internalize it and try to cleanse myself of the feeling of disgust. What's important here is that we need to stop normalizing inappropriate sexual advances and touching of women in bars and in public. We need to teach women that when men touch them in inappropriate ways, it's okay and healthy and good to be angry and to express those feelings rather than just take it because of what society may tell you you should expect. May we of course teach the men not to do it, but may we also teach and SHOW women that they will not be shamed for coming forward and naturally reacting to it.

2 comments:

  1. I really like your blog for a couple different reasons! First, it completely opened my eyes on something I hadn't even realized about myself. I had seen this video prior to reading this and I have to admit that I was totally going along with society in that I just thought it was funny and that they totally had the right to respond that way. But reading your blog made me realize that yeah, if guys can respond like that, why don't we as women do that? Second, I like how you point out more than just the fact that not only should we realize that women can respond like this, men shouldn't be doing it in the first place and we should teach them to cut it out! Great blog!

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  2. This really resonates with me right now because I had one of these encounters over the weekend where a guy that I didn't really know was touching me and trying to get me not to walk away. I got very angry and openly told him in a very straightforward way to stop touching me and to let me go past him. Instead of recognizing that he was making me uncomfortable, he ignored what I was saying completely. Needless to say I got angry and raised my voice and other people started to notice and he finally got the idea and backed off. Moral of the story is that not only is it unfair that men often assume women want to be approached in these ways, but they also have a hard time taking no for an answer. I really love the video you mention because it does show guys how women feel when they are objectified. I also appreciated that you brought up how so many videos online and on social media give incorrect or ignorant information (I'm still cringing at the video we watched in class with the horrible voiceover about the pay gap... yikes). I think not only is it important for people to inform themselves and form their own opinions, but they need to be getting their information from accurate sources, not just spewing ignorant nonsense. All in all you made some great points Kate!

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