Gabriela Del Valle: Stop comparing politics to sexual violence (The Outline)
Comey isn’t an abuse victim, and Trump is not gaslighting you.
Survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence face significant barriers when they try to report their abuse, and the Trump administration is making it harder for victims to seek justice. Given this, there’s something inherently icky about people comparing political situations to sexual assault. It’s a metaphor that serves no one.
Shanita Hubbard: Russell Simmons, R. Kelly, and Why Black Women Can’t Say #MeToo (NYT)
When your community fights for the people who terrorized you, it means your pain is not a priority.
#MeToo is triggering memories of that corner that I’ve tucked away for 20 years because I’ve been taught there are greater needs in the community. Perhaps this is part of the reason studies indicate only one in 15 African-American women report being raped. We’ve seen the unchecked power of white men ravish our communities, and we carry the message of “not right now” when it comes to addressing our pain if the offender is black.
Regarding David Foster Wallace, who Maria argues simply dismissing as “problematic” is not quite the answer.
The artist of special gifts who is also a “hideous man” is a deeply valuable source of information for a society seeking to better itself.
This piece doesn’t do enough—it says simply dismissing DFW is unrealistic, but doesn’t offer any of its own ideas about how we’re expected to extract special value from reading the work of a serially abusive man, only that it’s possible and that his work is so good we can’t ignore it. We can learn from troubled people who weren’t abusive, so what makes David Foster Wallace so special?
Roxane Gay: I Thought Men Might Do Better Than This (NYT)
In his statements to the committee, Judge Kavanaugh said that the allegations against him had ruined his life even though he may well be confirmed to a lifetime appointment on the Supreme Court. Mr. Hockenberry and Mr. Ghomeshi also lament how their lives have been ruined. The bar for a man’s ruin is, apparently, quite low. May we all be so lucky as to have our lives so ruined.
History is once more repeating itself and will continue to do so until we, as a culture, begin not only to believe women but also to value women enough to consider harming them unacceptable, unthinkable.
Helen Rosner: 20 Things Men Can Do RTFN to Support Women, Beyond Just Literally Ceasing to Sexually Harass Us
If you’re a man unsure of what you can do right now to support women, instant changes you can make this very second in your daily life that will make life better for women (and, bonus, for men too!), here you go.
Hazel Cills: Spotify's New Mute Feature Is a Patronizing Misstep (Jezebel)
There’s no easy institutional answer as to what to do with the music of men like R. Kelly, or XXXTentacion, or any other alleged abuser on a streaming platform like Spotify. While allowing users to answer that question on their own might seem like a great solution at first glance, it’s ultimately a lazy, patronizing copout for Spotify, one which allows the streaming giant to avoid answering for their role in promoting these artists.
Jillian Mapes: Why Spotify’s New Policy on Hateful Conduct Is a Flawed Step Forward (Pitchfork)
Here in late capitalism, our only real power is as consumers, en masse. We need organizing forces like #MuteRKelly. But can a company that is still making money off the person they are protesting ever really play that role?
Thread by @drvox on This American Life episode discussing the women sexually assaulted by Don Hazen #metoo
Not all of the damage he did was dramatic; not every life was ruined. But in every case, he left behind a new increment of self-doubt and regret, a story arc sent somewhat askew. None of the women in his wake were granted closure or redemption.
Listening to them tell their own stories -- Hazen was not the first or only manipulative man they had encountered -- made me think about how, for women, these little incidents just pile up, and pile up, and pile up, creating an extra weight they must lug everywhere.
If we valued women as individual human beings, autonomous and freestanding, with their own talents and stories, due the basic respect all humans are due -- not as caricatures & archetypes in men's heroic journeys -- we would see this accumulation as an ancient and ongoing tragedy, an enormous squandering of human potential stretched out over generations and generations, still underway as we speak. We would be horrified.
That we still think of these stories as men's stories, think of men as the protagonists, worry over men's jobs and reputations, shows that we do not. We say we do, but we do not.
Leigh Honeywell: The Al Capone theory of sexual harassment
It’s simple: people who engage in sexual harassment or assault are also likely to steal, plagiarize, embezzle, engage in overt racism, or otherwise harm their business. (Of course, sexual harassment and assault harms a business – and even entire fields of endeavor – but in ways that are often discounted or ignored.) Ask around about the person who gets handsy with the receptionist, or makes sex jokes when they get drunk, and you’ll often find out that they also violated the company expense policy, or exaggerated on their résumé, or took credit for a colleague’s project. More than likely, they’ve engaged in sexual misconduct multiple times, and a little research (such as calling previous employers) will show this, as we saw in the case of former Uber and Google employee Amit Singhal.
This is a depressing read. One girl’s account of being sexually harassed after a Das Racist show and the Tumblr followups reveal more of the same. Both times DR played in Hawaii, they were wasted before the first song. What a bunch of assholes.