I’ve been overwhelmed by the outpouring of sexual harassment complaints pouring out of Hollywood–and politics as well. The pace seems to have slowed down, but it’s still soul-crushing to realize how many predators there are out there and how much we accept it as a given in our society. I’ve heard the variant of ‘men are dogs’ and ‘that’s just the way men are’. I heartily protest because I’ve known plenty of men not like this, and I think more of men than many men do. In addition, it gives an excuse for the horrible behavior. If we shrug our shoulders and say, “Men are trash,” well, then, there’s nothing we can do about it, is there?
I don’t disagree that men (and women, too!) have biological urges that can be powerful at times. However, I most heartily disagree that men can’t control these urges. There is absolutely nothing wrong with seeing a comely person and thinking, “I’d tap that ass.” I, myself, have done it many times. But because I’m a woman who has been heavily trained that one simpy must not think those thoughts, let alone speak them, I can keep them to myself when it’s inappropriate to share them. I heard an interesting interview on NPR with a transgender man, and one thing that really bothered him was how once he started taking the T (testosterone), he was driven almost cazy with lustfully thoughts. If I remember correctly, he was given two to three times the amount of testosterone of the ‘typical’ man, and it became difficult for him to control his desires. He said he was so conflicted about it because when he was a she and a lesbian, she prided herself on being a feminist of the utmost order. Once the T was coursing through him, if he saw a pretty woman, all he could think about was fucking her.
Even so, he never attacked a woman, which is my point. No matter how powerful are the urges, it is up to the person to control them. I’ve had powerful sexual attractions to the ‘wrong’ person, and I’ve sublimated them, sometimes with great difficulty. The thing is, you have to set firm boundaries with the object of your affection in order you don’t tip over into grossness. I’m wandering far from the intent of this post, though.
When the news about Harvey Weinstein broke, I was completely disgusted, but not entirely surprised. Then, the other perps were revealed at a fast and furious pace. I noticed that I was having a different reaction based on who the perp was, what he did, and how he reacted to being found out. Oh, and also how I originally felt about him.