Me Too: The Outcry Against Patriarchy's Rape Culture.
It has not taken too long for the 'Me too' movement to follow the Harvey Weinstein sexual abuse allegations that recently hit Hollywood, creating a wide outcry against society's permissiveness and encouragement of sexual harassment and rape culture. The choice of a popular figure can be misleading, as it focuses the attention on the powerful, somehow diffusing it from the rest of social strata. Neither sexual harassment, nor rape culture has social status. With this movement there is a pronounced division of genders: male perpetrators, female victims or survivors. We do this together, or not at all.
Sexual abuse affects both, women and in lesser numbers, men. An act of aggression against any human being should not be divided by gender, but until society does not educate children to be just that; human beings, we will continue coexisting as male and female obsessed with our differences. Both, modern men and women are products of patriarchal society, a system that is equally damaging to either, even though the consequences affect both groups in different ways.
The movement 'Me too' intends to create awareness over the widespread habit of sexual harassment, sexual abuse and rape culture that targets women alone. At a simple look at social media, anyone can perceive that this is an issue that affects most women. Throughout history there have been numerous movements to create awareness and denounce numerous social issues, but if one thing has been missing from each, is the consistency to carry out a long term campaign that reaches the establishment. Social movements often wane down when a slight concession is made with promises of substantial changes that do not come.
There is an immediate and long due need to create change, and while there is little hope that governments or law makers do implement the appropriate amendments that positively influence people, the problem has to be recognised, and practical and spiritual solutions promoted and implemented.
Unfortunately, with this movement, and as Jackson Katz puts it: all the focus has been placed on women. Nothing is being said about men sexually abusing and raping. In Katz's words, which can be found on bellow, there is even a carefully crafted language that it is used to make it "a bad thing that happens to women." It must be a "pre-existing condition."
All answers to humanity's problems lie in people, reason for which governments, media, banks and politicians instigate division in order to control the masses. It requires that people come out of this stage of emotional numbness in which people manage to survive, but hardly live fully. Humanity cannot longer trust traditional leaders. They're now running a popularity contest, yet, their decisions remain unpopular while many people play the division game over what party is going to win. The evolution of humanity goes through small communities, groups and personal or small initiatives that contribute to make this world a better place. Certainly the solution of rape culture and the submission of women requires the disappearance of patriarchy through education. In the blog post 'All men are the same' I already offered a first step for men to pause and reflect on this global problem. It's not the final solution, but it is a step closer. Answers must be collective.
Patriarchy is emasculating men. Made up expressions such as "boys don't cry", "man up", "be a man" or "toughen up" act like energetic life sentences that condemn men to live unemotional lives. Removing emotion everything and everyone becomes superficial failing to see the depth, the heart, the feelings and hurt in others treating them as such. Thus a man becomes disembodied, disconnected from his true self, feeling through his penis. Lack of emotion serves to objectify women in order to satisfy sexual urges at any cost, never considering the consequences. Sexual energy becomes unbalanced, destructive. Sexual energy when channelled adequately is creative and an incredible source of abundance. Rape culture is real, widespread, condoned by the elites and affects everyone. It is the shame of men. No wonder we don't take steps to change this naturalised, as it does involve emotions that men do not want to deal with. The answer is in the Divine Masculine. It is time we educate ourselves and each other.
The 'me too' movement is bound to vanish like many other initiatives at the first sight of mass tragedy, being this natural or not, but it has found a collective voice that in my opinion should continue speaking out. So far, rape and sexual harassment or abuse has been traditionally understood as something that happens to women individually in most cases, it doesn't have the repercussion of a mass tragedy. #Metoo has changed this. There is a major outcry for anyone who wants to look with their heart to take note and begin to take steps to change it.
Of course, this movement has been met with the unconscious responses from many men arguing that it happens to men, that men are also abused, that men also suffer due to the mistreatment of women and so on. While this is true, it is not the time, as it sounds and it is an excuse to keep validating the abuse. In order to understand others, one has to listen to them. This attitude, which in any other context is kept by both men and women does not help to create a healthy dialogue. One cannot answer to someone else if first we do no understand the question, nor the emotion that lies behind, which is often the reason to reject the question.
Listening with all senses allows anyone that this is not a witch hunt, but an invitation to create much needed change.
Any kind of abuse affects that person who suffered it and everyone in their lives. It does also affect in personal relationships, as intimacy is damaged, often lost. The energy left by sexual abuse might stay with a victim/survivor a lifetime interfering in their relationships, and not only them, but their partners.The loss of intimacy, which affects both, men and women is one of the major cause of failed relationships. Intimacy is a far too deep and wide subject to deal with in just one blog post. New material will be published in the following weeks. Regaining intimacy could solve most of the problems in this world. This is when 'me first' becomes important, when we listen to ourselves, to our bodies, to sensual and sexual stimuli responding with openness in order to produce healthy responses. For now, let's allow the expression of this outcry, listening respectfully and in silence. It is a change of attitude that is needed, which requires pause, reflection and practical answers followed by action. And love, it does need love. Plenty of it!
I'd like to hear from both men and women who'd like to take practical steps to create initiatives that provide answers to these issues. If this is your case, do contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org
It's possible to find healthy solutions. Everything is possible.
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Photo: Amy Weeks
Posted by Manel Blanco