Take Your Stinking Paws Off Me You Damn Dirty Ape!

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Of course this is a famous Planet Of The Apes reference with apologies to beautiful real apes everywhere who have more sophistication, wit and style. But clearly, for a lot of women today it remains a fitting demand. Following the Harvey Weinstein scandal we are being deluged with women’s stories of abusive, self entitled men believing that any woman is theirs for the taking.

People (sheep) who are repeatedly asking why the women (and sometimes men) didn’t speak up before clearly do not understand or want to understand that this problem is so entwined, so prevalent and sometimes so nuanced that where do you start? Do you complain about the first attack or the tenth? Considering the fact that no one listened the first 3 times do you continue complaining or just get on with your life?

How DARE They Desire To Be Successful!

Women are being accused of taking the money or success and running instead of sacrificing their whole dreams, careers and wages by grassing on a man so powerful he can end your career in a 2 minute phone call. You know…having worked and trained for anything from 5 to 10 years at your craft you should just give it up for the sake of feminism.

Why should those women be forced to throw away their careers to save the world? That is THEIR own private choice to make not the armchair critics. When it happens to you as an individual then YOU save the world.

Perhaps these women have a parent in a nursing home that doesn’t accept principles to pay for their parent’s room and prefers cash. Or perhaps they have children … apparently they should stand on principle and let their family eat cake…or indeed munch on their principles. Need school clothes? Here wrap yourself in my principles. Are they really demanding the principles of the victims be looked at over Weinsteins?…Hallo?!!

The reason many women put up with it will be varied and wide …it still doesn’t make them the ones in the wrong, whichever way you turn it. Quite frankly, the real questions are why does a woman have to put in the graft for years and be asked to sacrifice for others on the brink of success in a way not required of men? Why should women walk away from their dream job and opt for another job they didn’t want, ‘Go work in Burger King!’ and (most) men don’t have to? Those are the questions to ask, not (whiny voice) why didn’t they tell someone at the time?

 

Having had men maul me, there is a process:

  • 1. you are in shock and can’t believe it happened (especially when the person is well known.)
  • 2. there is a kind of undeserved embarrassment (I was much younger – wouldn’t happen today.)
  • 3. you are not sure who to tell and what to say (because you are still in shock.)
  • 4. you can wander around for hours, days, months with WTF? in invisible letters above your head still trying to process it. Everyone is different weirdly enough.
  • 5. time passes and you believe it’s too late to say anything…or you summon up the courage to say something and not much happens anyway – I’ve done both.

 

But the biggest reason for hearing about these cases as a windfall? No one ever listens anyway. There were indeed women who tried to tell people (as in the Cosby case) but they were shouted down, paid off, made (threatened) to go away.

So enough of that distracting rubbish.

One person is responsible. Weinstein.

And there are hundreds like him shivering in their mansions as we speak, wondering if their stories are about to blow up too.

 

The reason lots of women are speaking up today and not before you bunch of dumbo’s asking the question on Twitter?

They have an army behind them that they didn’t have before.

 

Practically every woman will have a story.

I have loads. Here’s just one.

I once had a guy pick me up and carry me like they carry mannequins in the New York fashion district. I’m not the heaviest person you will meet.

He was attempting to carry me up to the bedroom above the office.

I was completely horizontal hanging onto the door jambs with the white tips of my fingers.

I experienced a full on male tantrum, the enraged aggression at the audacity of my not behaving like a James Bond female and dropping trou at the mere suggestion of his sheer manliness.

 

My Name Is Bond, James Bond.

Films like this that were rife in the 70 through to 90’s did not help this sense of male entitlement. They were full of women who giggled when slapped on the behind, were frequently patted on the head and told to go do the dishes and who even as experienced fellow spies demonstrated zero skills other than satisfying James Bond in bed. While he of course had the solutions and skill to do everything and anything.

I’m no wilting flower and the repeat attacks simply became the norm. Only someone who has the luxury of not been repeatedly violated by sexism, racism, disable-ism or any other ism will not understand how you adjust and get on with the rest of life because life doesn’t stop around you. The tax man doesn’t excuse you because you have been attacked.

The incidents have not affected my life in any salient way – even the most aggressive ones have not made me a victim of anyone or anything. They have simply made me more careful and distrusting with zero tolerance of dickery. But it is pleasing that women are speaking up today, because looking at the bulldozing of other disgusting human behaviours like slavery, there is clearly a time and a place when the shift begins. Also I guarantee you that quite a few men do not believe that what they are doing is unwelcome because the caveman sense of entitlement is soooo strong.

 

Male Entitlement Has Been Tenderly Nurtured For Them By Both Men And Women.

Men have always been enabled. By other men, wives, sisters, mothers, fathers, people on their payroll…

You hear this wonderful advice from women to women all the time;

‘Suck it up or you’ll hurt his career.’ Or how about, ‘Don’t say a word and bring shame on this family.’

Remember the women wearing ‘Grab My Pussy’ tee shirts? What a great message for their daughters. Fabulous parenting.

And of course Weinstein and his few supporters are going down the ‘It’s an illness, I’m the victim’ route. Very similar to ‘It’s just locker room banter,’ followed by nothing much happening to drum in the idea that neither is acceptable.

And let’s not forget that the Clinton legacy was not damaged in any real material way by his Oval office shenanigans.

 

Yes, women prey on people too but my post is about men in powerful positions using that power over people because they have to pay the rent or (shame on them!) they desire to be successful.

The thing to take from all this?

There will be many more.

 

What Say You?

What experiences do you have male or female?

What did you learn from them if anything?

What are you telling your girls and boys about this?

What suggestions do you have (particularly) for women? (I have a few, it involves gonads and much pain.)

 

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29 thoughts on “Take Your Stinking Paws Off Me You Damn Dirty Ape!

  1. Oh, and as as Post Scriptum (which will be read first I guess?)
    “Silence like a cancer grows.” Simon & Grafunkel’s words are a good summary.
    If nothing is said… impunity sets in. Maybe, maybe, women now understand that there will be support
    if they speak out.
    Hopefully.

      1. It seems to be keeping momentum. Which is good. Sexual abuse is just another guise of “arbitrary”. A couple of kings were beheaded just so arbitrary could… be controlled? (Not much success ultimately, right?)

      2. Sorry, a bit of a Gallicism I guess, I meant arbitrariness? Arbitrarity? One of the greatest flaws of power: taking arbitrary decisions when there are no checks and balances. (And one of the things I personally hate most) 🙂

  2. A difficult post to comment, Guenevire… This is so far away form my personal way of thinking and experience… This is about abuse of power. Which includes sex power. I just cannot begin to grasp that such people behave so and get away with it. I do believe they do. Now, why is that happening? In a supposedly civilized society? The same way there will probably be war again on a massive scale, because everybody has practically forgotten what happened the last time. Politicians still behave like cavemen. And think they have all the power. But do they? The 20th century, aside from two massive massacres, has also produced a radical change. Two in fact. a) the general population overall is better educated. we’ve come from 40% who couldn’t read or write in the 19th century to 40/60% university educated population?
    b) Women. That is the major change of the 20th century. Most women in many parts of the world have access to a career, education, play tennis (!) And yet, just as politicians still think the people are sheep (Not’ny more), men in power still view women as cattle… Well, not’ny more… 🙂 That outdated behaviour has fed on impunity. I think (and I’m glad) impunity is over. But mark my words: it is not only the culprits who need to be brought to justice. It is also the accessories. Before or after the fact. All those who have know in that industry and have said nothing.
    Thank you for the thought Guenevire.
    Our friend Lancelot is outraged.

    1. We’ll see dear Humbert, I have a feeling that if we were to truly flush out all the culprits and their aiders there would be a massive hole in politics and the entertainment industry.

      I have a feeling that it will go underground for a while and then just continue on. After all how long have people been trying to address the rife pedophilia in both those areas – and sport…where has it got them?

      1. There is indeed, I dunno…d’you think it will happen? Didn’t know about the ‘let’ though. Clearly the 4 horsemen are gathering and it is the end of the world. They’ll be allowing coloured shorts in Wimbledon next…SMELLING SALTS!

      2. Yes Augustus! The morn is crisp with ravaging winds and yet I can hear their determined hooves…hopefully they can get here before Trump’s sons cut off their heads and flounce them through customs.

  3. …and I’ll add another reason: Because some men manage to pass off (or start) their creepiness by acting friendly, then blaming the woman for (a) acting friendly or (b) not acting friendly. it leaves a lot of younger women feeling like somehow or other it was all their fault–no matter what they did.

    1. As Julia Roberts said in ‘Pretty Woman’ there must be some kind of school they go to to learn this stuff because some of the things these men do – up and as far as training a woman to accept ongoing domestic abuse – is akin to psychological training.

  4. I think that lecherous behavior by men towards women is not only tolerated but in some ways expected in our society. When a man steps over the line between finding a woman attractive and being inappropriate there seems to be no end to the excuses but they all come down to, ‘boys will be boys’.

    As a young(er) woman I couldn’t go out to the pub or a club without some idiot groping my behind or using the crowd as a poor excuse to rub himself against me. I suppose it was something I disliked but accepted.

    When I was 22 and married only a year, an older colleague put his hands down my top. But the thing was, there had been what I thought was a harmless flirtation going on between us. I was shocked and embarrassed that things had escalated but I also felt guilty, thinking I had encouraged the behavior. And in some ways I felt flattered. He was older and attractive and my husband and I were adjusting to our new relationship. The whole thing was confusing, much more than people seem to expect.

    I told my husband but never told anyone else – he had two young children and actually I did like him as a person. And I didn’t want to draw attention to my own behavior. Does that sound stupid? How can there be such a dichotomy of thought and feeling?

    Ten years later I’m older and wiser. I respect myself and demand to be respected. I like men to find me attractive, I can’t pretend I don’t, but I know better than to think that finding me attractive gives someone the right to touch me or make advances.

    I should say that I think that men also suffer from sexual predatation – although not to same extent – and society is equally as dismissive. Have you ever watched 40 Days and 40 Nights? Or Horrible Bosses? Both comedies in which men are raped and yet that seems to be the punchline, that they’re raped.

    1. Ooogh some great points. Of course there are grey areas and many don’t seem to understand that people are not black or white, right or left.

      So telling a woman how she should have reacted to a sexual assault is incredibly immature and stupid. ‘Why didn’t she say something at the time?’ For all the reasons you point out….and that STILL doesn’t make it her fault or okay to touch her.

      Equally then I’d have to say for the man (SOME of them) they are brought up with equivalent confused thoughts about what is okay and not okay – especially as women are never going to have a consensus on what is acceptable.

      A woman who makes her living from allowing men that kind of access to her is probably not going to have the same views as the average woman, as we saw when they were trying to ban topless pictures in a ‘family’ newspaper the UK. Neither is a woman who is confused about self respect and boundaries.

      “And I didn’t want to draw attention to my own behaviour. Does that sound stupid? How can there be such a dichotomy of thought and feeling?” Because we are human AND you were young – he was not. A little light flirting does not mean that either side is entitled to take things too far.

      Plus I also think that older men use that immature confusion to their advantage. When a working partner pounced on me and stuck his horrible tongue down my throat (in a separate incident to the one I wrote about), I was in shock. I didn’t see it coming. There was no flirting in my case because I saw him entirely as a working partner. Whilst still in my befuddlement and trying to process what just happened, he tried to make me feel stupid by suggesting that everyone was at it and I am being childish to make a fuss. It was enough to confuse me in the moment as I tried to work out if indeed I was being silly rather than clocking the shitter around the head.

      It always annoys me that reverse predation or mocking is supposedly funny. One of my bug bears are adverts that paint the man as the fool or clumsy oaf around the household and the woman as the knowledgeable clever clogs. It’s not right either way.

  5. I feel that another possible reason as to perhaps why women may not speak up sooner is shame. Society coerces them into remaining silent because of course they must have done something to deserve that treatment. It isn’t the fault of those poor, helpless, innocent men folk! They were seduced by the mere presence of those shameless hussies! How dare they be around? How dare they be women? How dare they have all those scandalous (yet enviable) pointy in and out bits? It’s this kind of skewed logic that’s pervasive in society, and too many of us buy into this without even realising. Until men have the guts to wear the shame for their own actions then women will continue to be scapegoated and outright forced to wear shame instead.

    1. We look down on countries that force women with pointy bits into jail for co-ercing their rapes by being alive (although that being alive thing is sometimes not necessary) and yet it’s so prevalent in the west. It’s one of those lessons you learn without having to go to school.

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