When Elliot Rodger killed his roommates and random people in “revenge” for the fact women “denied” him the sex he felt he was entitled to, the #YesAllWomen was formed to explain how the normalization of misogyny in culture means that women face danger. Moreover, because it is seen as normal it becomes a “valid” avenue of anger for men who are mentally ill enough to act out extreme violence, such as mass murders and serial rapes. In 2009 George Sodini killed women in an aerobics class to “punish” all women for rejecting him. “In the note found at the scene in Sodini’s gym bag, he complains he had never spent a weekend with a woman, never vacationed with a woman and never lived with a woman, and that he had had limited sexual experiences … He makes similar complaints in his online blog, which also documents his growing rage at women for rejecting him and at the world he felt had abandoned him.”
Of course, women pointing out that subtly and subliminally teaching an entire culture that women are bitches that owe men sex is a bad idea and will encourage the outliers to harm women was seen by some as rampant man-hating. Just like pointing out that racism is harmful is the exact same thing as “hating white people”.
However, true men rallied to defend equality for all human beings. “While many men chose to enter into the #YesAllWomen conversation as if it were a battlefield, charging to defend the honor of their brother menfolk – another group of men showed up to learn. The #AllMenCan hashtag exists for men who stand against misogyny and violence against women – who see equality as a promise of a better world, not a threat to their manhood.”
In honor of #AllMenCan I would like to give a big ‘ol shout-out to my husband, my Sweet Babou. He assumes I am an equal partner and assumes parenthood is OUR job. He knows we live in a rape culture and does what he can to combat it. He plays math, science and computer learning games with our daughters because he knows there is NO reason they can’t rock in math, science and computing. He is a hella fine man and I love him with all my heart.
I love you, Sweet Babou.