The #MeToo social media movement is well-intentioned, yet problematic, an issue Tori went into in-depth yesterday. But one upside of this complicated online activism is the impact it’s had on men around the world. For many, sexual harassment and sexual assault went from a theoretical concept to very real as they saw their friends, family, and loved ones fill their timelines with the simple, heartbreaking phrase: me too.
Men began to use #metoo, not only to share their own stories of abuse, but also to voice their support of survivors. Australian author Benjamin Law proposed a new hashtag in hopes of furthering the conversation of how male allies can do better.
#HowIWillChange: Acknowledge that if all women I know has been sexually harassed, abused or assaulted, then I know perpetrators. Or am one.— Benjamin Law 🌈 (@mrbenjaminlaw) October 16, 2017
#HowIWillChange: Recognise I don't need to be a perpetrator to be a bad guy. Questioning harassment, not doing anything about it—all as bad.— Benjamin Law 🌈 (@mrbenjaminlaw) October 16, 2017
#HowIWillChange: I'll do all this without expecting to be congratulated or praised since women do the heavy lifting every other fucking day.— Benjamin Law 🌈 (@mrbenjaminlaw) October 16, 2017
#HowIWillChange: Recognise anything we offer to do using this hashtag is already done by women every day and they cop endless abuse for it.— Benjamin Law 🌈 (@mrbenjaminlaw) October 16, 2017
Twitter users are employing this hashtag as an opportunity to reflect and do better.
#HowIWillChange means not being a bystander while women expend emotional labour to protect their safety; no longer apathy, but action— biryani brah (@garliquorice) October 16, 2017
I will never blame a victim, and I will never stand and watch as a man makes unwanted advances on a woman #HowIWillChange— Michael (@TrippyTrappy_Jr) October 17, 2017
I will no longer laugh & say "that's not that bad" when a woman tells me of an incident that (I deem) to be very minor.— Clinton White (@cwhiteisalright) October 18, 2017
In a meeting, producer made sexist comment, so stunned didn't call him out. Will speak up next time #HowIWillChange— B E Ayshford (@episode2480) October 16, 2017
Men keep in mind women don't owe us their stories for us to become advocates for them in public/ private spaces. #HowIWillChange— Phillip (@Philllip_Lewis) October 17, 2017
Meanwhile, some took this as an opportunity to declare themselves above reproach.
#HowIWillChange? I won't, because seemingly, unlike the white knights that pioneered this tag, I 'already' abhor rape and sexual harassment.— Phil 🎃 (@Pyramidial) October 18, 2017
Some wealthy Jew groped and raped actresses for 30 years and now *I'm* supposed to grovel & promise to 'change"??— Just Joe (@MrJoePrichard) October 17, 2017
#HowIWillChange - I will not. As a Muslim I have the greatest ethos humanity can possibly possess. We do not rape, grope, leer, flirt.— احمد الدمشقي (@dimashqee) October 18, 2017
#HowIWillChange?— Sky'oween (@PlagueJesterSky) October 17, 2017
Why the fuck should I change?
I've done nothing wrong.
I'm not a representation of my gender.
I'm perfect just how I am.
The last one so perfectly distills this line of thinking, that I wondered if it’s satire. It is not.
>what people are going to do?— Sky'oween (@PlagueJesterSky) October 17, 2017
Think of a pink elephant.
If someone wants to do something, they're gonna do it one way or another.
If you're fighting #HowIWillChange, you've missed the point and made it about you. The same self centric behaviors the tag was to fight. >— Some Rowdyass Dog (@HeckPuppy) October 17, 2017
#HowIWillChange means acknowledging the socialisation of ALL men into cruelty and entitlement, whether we individually act on it or not— biryani brah (@garliquorice) October 16, 2017
Yes, all men.