Thoughts about sexual harassment

Of course as a woman I’ve been following along reading and listening to the continuing reports all over the media about the various women alleged to have been assaulted and/or harassed by numerous and sundry political and Hollywood figures. Every day more names are listed. One of the recent actors accused is Dustin Hoffman. None of us know what really happened between the people involved. I’m not saying something did or didn’t occur in all these cases. What is worrisome to me are several factors. Why do victims not speak up immediately? Even if there is the fear factor that nobody will believe them, it would be on the record.

In Hollywood so many actresses are coming forward with their stories or with corroboration that things did happen which they knew about, that it makes me sick listening to the likes of Meryl Streep and Kevin Spacey jumping on the bandwagon. They are clearly legends who would have had some pull, had they spoken up long ago!

The second and perhaps most worrisome thing (and please bear with me) is, WHY are we not preparing our girls to better handle brutish behavior? Why do we not teach self-defense as part of physical education to all girls starting in elementary school? Because obviously it’s NEVER enough to just say no. Or scream. Or push a man off.

The third thing really bothering me is why would any woman knowingly go alone to some guy’s hotel room unless she plans to have sex with him? Really, please explain this one to me. Even if you’re an aspiring actress and he says it’s to show you a great script or read lines with you or try you out for a part in his new play, show, etc…? WHY? Didn’t your mother teach you anything? Because to me that is just asking for big trouble. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not suggesting that any woman asks to be assaulted, or asks to have her drink altered with a date-rape drug or sedative. Of course not! But use some sense, ladies! When you go out, never go alone! Buy your own drinks. Know how much alcohol you can handle and stick to that limit.

Know how to handle yourself in a crowd and be prepared to defend yourself if you have to. If someone approaches, speaks, or touches you in a way you find inappropriate, speak up, LOUDLY.  I never forgot what my daughter’s karate teacher told the kids. If anyone tried to hurt them or grab them, they were to yell at the top of their lungs, “This is not my mother! This is not my father!”

Well you know what, women could do the same thing in a bar, restaurant, or even a hotel. It would arouse attention if a woman started screaming her head off, and we should be doing it more. We need to stop keeping our mouths closed and let the world know we have voices and we aren’t going to allow big bullies to out-maneuver us any longer. It really is time to make a big scene and stop acting lady-like.

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2 thoughts on “Thoughts about sexual harassment

  1. As a woman, I have great empathy for other women who experience sexual harassment and/or sexual assault. There is a witch hunt happening in Hollywood right now, and, it is good that all people realize that no one is above reproach…no matter how much money you have, how famous you are, or how much influence you have over others…it is not acceptable to sexually harass women, men, or children. However, that said, I do believe that something that seems to get lost in this conversation is personal responsibility. It is every adult’s responsibility to keep her/himself safe… that may include staying sober, not going to someone’s hotel room to look at a script, not posing nude for photos, etc. Please note that I am absolutely not blaming the victim…regardless of how someone is dressed, or acting, it is not an excuse to harass or assault them. But, we do need to teach people how to keep themselves safe, because there will always be predators out there. Don’t make it easy for them.

    Liked by 1 person

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