You shouldn’t have to be a father of daughters to understand sexual harassment is wrong
Sexual harassment is on everyone’s mind this week, as more and more allegations against Hollywood movie mogul Harvey Weinstein surface. And there is one narrative that keeps surfacing too: that of the man who has daughters, and now understands that sexual harassment is wrong.
It would be nice if the general male public would not need to have actually created a female to understand that women are human and deserve respect, but it seems that’s asking too much.
This idea was brought to the forefront this week, as Matt Damon responded to the Harvey Weinstein allegations. He has been under the spotlight this week as allegations that he helped kill a story about Weinstein’s predatory behavior in 2004 surfaced. Speaking to Deadline, Damon stood up for himself and denied those allegations. He said, “Look, even before I was famous, I didn’t abide by this kind of behavior. But now, as the father of four daughters, this is the kind of sexual predation that keeps me up at night. This is the great fear for all of us. You have a daughter, you know…”
Harvey Weinstein has daughters, too. Four of them. That didn’t stop him from being a serial predator. Maybe, just maybe, women deserve to be treated with respect and not assaulted, simply because they’re human beings? And it’s wrong?
Let’s recap some of the allegations, shall we? There was the audio of a woman begging Weinstein to leave her alone, as he used guilt and manipulation to try to get her in his hotel room to watch him shower. Then there was the story of the journalist who was cornered by Weinstein in a restaurant kitchen, and when she refused to let him touch her he demanded she just “shut up and stand there” while he masturbated and ejaculated into a plant. Then there was the New Yorker article detailing the several women who claimed Weinstein forced them to receive or perform oral sex — and several who claim he raped them.
Do you need to be a father of daughters to understand that all of this is fucking disgusting? Newsflash — all women are someone’s daughter. Crazy, right?
Twitter has had about enough of this reasoning.
Dear Men, Please remove the phrase "as a husband and/or a father of daughters" from your vocabulary. Women exist outside your bubble.
— Abigail Shirley (@abzdafab) October 10, 2017
Actors currently drafting your Weinstein statements: Keep in mind that women are not only “wives” and “daughters” but also, in fact, people
— Sam Lansky (@samlansky) October 10, 2017
imagine how shitty the men WITHOUT daughters must be. they can't even see women. they just see a gray outline like in that Black Mirror ep.
— Angie J. Han (@ajhan) October 10, 2017
As the father of one son and no daughters, I think using your kids to shield yourself from criticism is gross
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) October 11, 2017
Women exist as people, outside the bubble of the male experience. It would be great if that could just be acknowledged fully. And pro-tip: if you were completely unable to see how preying on women is fundamentally wrong until you created a few females of your own — maybe keep that to yourself.