Yet another musing on #misogyny… and #GirlPower.

If you are tired of hearing about #misogyny, then do something to eradicate it.

Let’s talk about this tweet, shall we?

While pundits, Hillary Haters, journalists of all stripes (yes, mostly men, but women too) sit around and judge Hillary Clinton for “making excuses” and not “taking responsibility”, Peter Daou spits out a tweet about how it takes guts to call out misogyny on the public stage. I can just imagine all the eye rolling from certain sectors of the Twitterville population and the itch in said population’s fingers to tell Mr. Daou how wrong he is. He’s just a Hillary Bot who is making up excuses for her. When will these people learn, huh? I mean come on, #misogyny is just an excuse made to explain away incompetence.

Hmmm, you don’t say. The irony of all this is that these very people are proving Mr. Daou’s tweet correct.

Women have been treated for centuries as second to men. There are still matriarchal societies in existence, but they are so few and far between and are currently being corrupted by the predominant patriarchal system that it is suffice to say they have little bearing overall on the fate of women. There are patriarchal societies that are slowly evolving to be not matriarchal, but egalitarian. There was hope the U.S. might be one of those societies, but it is clear we are not even close.

In every society there has been women that buck the patriarchal system, seen by the beneficiaries of the patriarchal system as a potential threat to their status. As men have been conditioned over generations to view themselves superior in all things outside of raising children, cleaning house, and cooking dinner, successful woman must have done something shady or untoward to get to such a level of success that she is competing for the upper echelons of leadership within the patriarchal system. No way did she get there on her own prowess. That is impossible. So they start chipping away at her – using any excuse to accuse her of malfeasance, corruption, stepping out of line for voicing her opinions, questioning her honesty and integrity or her right to make money when she doesn’t need it for next week’s groceries (yeah anybody catch that coming out of that supposed liberal white man’s mouth in Hillary’s interview at #recode? Anyone notice her reaction?), all the while letting their tribal brothers make as much money as they want, blatantly lie, and even perpetrate ACTUAL CRIMES AND CORRUPTION with barely a blink.

Okay, that’s the #misogyny, if anyone was wondering. Now what about the reaction to said #misogyny? Women have been conditioned to believe that we are to bear our troubles and burdens in silence. When pointing out the causes of our troubles we are accused of being weak, making excuses, whining. Actually demanding that something be done about those causes makes you an outright pariah. After centuries of this type of conditioning by the patriarchal system, it is no wonder women don’t report domestic violence, sexual harassment and assault, employment discrimination, etc. We are almost ALWAYS considered at fault for doing so. We must have done something ourselves to bring on whatever negative action against us.

Calling out #mysogynistic behavior can cause a women to be demoted, not promoted, lose her job, sent to jail, and yes, killed. The protections put into place, even in the workplace, are only as good as those who are supposed to enforce them. When it is men who are doing the enforcement, well, it can pretty much be a crapshoot as to whether they will take the woman seriously and do something about it or ignore her, or worse yet hold it over her head and maneuver things so the woman is ostracized and shut out of any justice. Guess what, women have a tendency to want to keep their jobs, their income, their lives, so taking a chance on the crapshoot for many is not really in the cards.

When a woman like Hillary Clinton basically says, fuck it, I’m going to use my status and power to call out the #misogyny because it is that important, men cry foul and many women cringe. Women fear the backlash from men or are so deeply immersed in the patriarchal social structure that they believe all the propaganda and join the men in ostracizing the woman. This empowers men to step up their attacks on women they feel threaten their status in society. Women and men who support a woman like Hillary are sneered at, demeaned, ostracized as well, as a means to take power away from the message.

Hillary Clinton is a smart woman. She has had to thread her way through patriarchal power structures her entire adult life. She has been knocked down, thrown around, and spit upon, yet she keeps getting back up, dusting herself off, and forging on. As someone on Twitter said recently: She. Is. A. Beast. She knows what people are saying about her as she takes the stage and calls out the rampant #misogyny in our country. She knows it will “tarnish” her image in the eyes of men and women alike who are mentally stuck in patriarchy. She knows this and SHE DOES NOT GIVE A FUCK, because she also knows economically and professionally she is safe, unlike many women who would love to be able to shout from the stage as well.

She can make all the waves she wants, forcing the subject of #mysogyny out in the open, empowering women to stand up for themselves and men to have their back. She can do this forcefully, showing her anger, her passion, and her smarts because she is DONE playing the game men want her to play. She is willing to take the punches for those succeeding her so that women can not just compete at the upper echelons of power in this country but BE the upper echelons of power. She is determined to change the rules of the game and fuck all y’all who think you can get in her way.

Hillary has always had guts. By the Goddess, they must be made of iron for her to have survived what she has and still come out swinging. Her new found freedom of no longer having to prove anything to anyone or watch out for fragile egos has allowed her to not just swing, but land the punches needed to shake the patriarchal system to its core. THAT is why her voice is important and that is why when people tell her to shut up, the rest of us say, “HELL NO.”

 

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