Opinion Reinshe for Curacao Chronicle
It is very hard to understand the man/woman relationship, how this mechanism works, I say it is a one hard manual with a long appendix that is updated regularly, of course I believe in gender equality, in equal rights and opportunities on decision making and in the empowerment of women gaining control over their lives.
But that doesn’t change the fact that there are heterosexual men who still objectify women, they get aroused by seeing body parts, maybe it is a psychologically inner triumph of their lust ,or an unconscious animal instinct dominated by a lack of awareness and development and respect, and if we flip the other side of the coin, we get to know that women like appreciation, admiration and the feeling of being wanted ,that’s the blunt truth ,and here comes the twist, by combining objectification and women desire we come across a difficult pattern of lines, safe ones, dangerous crossings and taboo. So where exactly masculine behavior becomes a harassment? The closest definition that really describes the term is when this behavior becomes “unwelcomed” whether it is verbal or physical, at work or against genders.
I can’t find one common notion of sexual harassment that I can apply on all societies, it keeps on mutating into different structures, for example a society that sexually objectifies the female put the blame on women and they don’t come out loud to defend themselves cause of lack of choice ,lack of financial independence and education, lack of self-esteem ,maybe thinking that rejecting sexual advances from superiors could result in losing the job, or putting themselves under huge pressure from court and society, and it is always difficult to accuse a man who has power over their lives so they end up hiding the harassment and moving on, although it is unacceptable to put up with it saying it’s the cost of doing business .
And We noticed lately that a big number of public figures were accused of sexual harassment, the majority were males in positions of power, it made me wonder why these allegations came out now and not before when it happened? Victims waited decades to come out to public with their stories, it isn’t no joke to suffer in silence thinking it is of no importance to treat that kind of situation.
A woman must tell a man when he crosses the line specifically if he is unaware of what kind of act he is getting himself into, there is no humorous harassment, and credibility takes a lifetime to build and one second to lose, men on a business hunt need to focus on the woman skills and not on having her as a date.
Throughout the years companies failed to create a safe workplace where everyone, especially women, can feel respected, but the game is changing amid these allegations and new rules are being set up , for example, NBC employees have been ordered to report any inappropriate relationships in the workplace and if they fail to do so, they could be fired , Microsoft also announced that it would end forced arbitration agreements with employees who make sexual harassment claims , by nature these agreements allow companies to keep harassment and discrimination claims out of court, hence the sexual misconduct continues .
And on social media Millions of women and some men are using now a new hashtag #me too encouraging victims to come forward and speak up if they have been sexually harassed to give societies a sense of the immensity of this problem also there has been the “whisper networks” channels that women use to warn each other about eerie men and a Google spreadsheet was passed around listing “shitty media men” accused of everything from sending inappropriate direct messages to violent sexual assault .
Finally allow me to emphasize on the critical word “Unwelcome Behavior” The victim may consent to certain conduct and participate in it even if it is a bit offensive therefore sexual conduct is unwelcoming whenever the person subjected to it considers it unwelcome, whether it is a request for a date, sex-oriented comment, or a joke.
Sexism, sex discrimination and sexual harassment in a hostile environment violate and humiliate human dignity, it is an inappropriate unacceptable behavior whatever the gender is, when we let go of the idea that women feel powerless all the time and men feel powerful all the time then we can reach an understanding and change all the rules of the men/women game. In remembrance of a powerful woman who once replied over an incident that happened to a girl who was harassed by a man in the street for wearing short skirt, she stressed out on the importance of respect and acceptance, in her opinion no matter what the circumstances are, men need to restrain themselves from any type of uncivil behavior (R.I.P)
© Reinshe 2017
Bron: Curacao Chronicle