Monday, 2 June 2014

#NotAllMen, but #YesAllWomen

In response to feminists asserting their belief that women are still not equal in 2014, an Internet meme, #NotAllMen, took shape.  The purpose of #NotAllMen is to highlight the fact that not all men are misogynists.  Well, thank you.  Obviously, not all men sexually assault women, objectify women, hate women, etc.  But this doesn't change the fact that women do get sexually assaulted, women are objectified, women are hated because they are women, etc.

Jeff Bridges (@JeffBridges) discusses the problem with the assertion of #NotAllMen in his Time opinion piece, #NotAllMen don't get it.  As he explains, after the killing spree in Isla Vista, California last month, some men took to the Internet to ensure people that not all men are like Elliot Rodger, who tired of being spurned by women (who owe him sex), decide to murder women, and the men with whom they apparently have sex.

In response to the belief that Rodger's actions were not rooted, at least somewhat, in misogyny, #YesAllWomen was born.  The purpose of the hashtag is for women to give examples and share experiences of the "harassment and discrimination" (Wikipedia) they face.  It is believed that ALL women have experienced harassment and discrimination because of their sex.  Based on the fact that, within four days of its first use, the hashtag was used 1.2 million times (The Guardian), I tend to strongly believe that #YesAllWomen is an accurate aphorism.

Below are some of tweets that resonated with me.

As you can tell, this tweet is incredibly popular, as evidenced by its 4990 favourites.  This sentiment really captures the agency women are denied over their own sexual choices.

I clearly remember walking down the halls at school (as a student), and absolutely hating this situation.  During breaks, boys would line either side of the hallway (near the doors in the 800 Hall for ODSS students, past and present).  For the most part, nothing nefarious happened, but there was the fear that something inappropriate would be said or done...because it did happen.  And you could feel the eyes.

Perhaps what needs to be the headline is: "Some women enjoy jogging, don't assault them".  As a runner, this really spoke to me.  My running opportunities during the winter are greatly lessened, as I don't feel safe running after dark.  Even in the summer time, there are places where I avoid running, because I don't feel safe.

#YesAllWomen is a great hashtag to follow, but only for short periods of time, because it gets rather depressing.  I have great hope that the actions and thoughts behind these tweets will be relics, and that my daughters, my students, and my friends will one day live in a world where #YesAllWomen doesn't have to exist.


  1. Before watching Philip Defranco on Youtube, I was totally unaware of this #yesallwomen. I lack a Twitter and even a Facebook so I'm not really connected to all this social media.

    After briefly researching this topic, I've seen many arguments brewing over this #yesallwomen, and some of them are pretty pointless.

    #NotAllMen and #YesAllWomen are very good things. They inform people of very real situations and on something like Twitter, it allows people to connect.

    This is a two sided issue though, in the UK only 40% of men actually initiate domestic violence. Even experiments of women assaulting men publicly were done. More people stopped to help the man assaulting the woman, then they did to the woman assaulting the man, in fact, most of the people stopped and laughed at what was happening.

    I find this issue very interesting.

  2. Ok, I've got it. After reading 5 posts on the #YesAllWomen I realize that there needs to be a change in society. This is a very bad thing that is happening here in society. So, instead of slamming all the #NotAllMen supporters over the head with the evidence, there should be a rise for sexual equality in the rising generation instead. If anything, MY generation is already starting to become influenced and is already repeating past mistakes of the last generation.
    This is the predicament that we call breaking the cycle.
    Now, instead of fighting over the history, how about we make sure that history does not repeat itself over again and that we can get some stupid men to sit down and some aggressive women to calm down.
    Hmmm... just an idea... I wonder whatever happened to chivalry. If I am right, the men treasured the women. And, the women gave back the love to the men.
    Anybody else have any ideas?

  3. This post really makes me think. Think about how this dilemma between the two genders and how each is viewed in society has such a struggling history and yet is coming to no peace full end. I really wish the world would just already accept and come to terms with the fact that in order for the world to be healthier place for both the genders in society, respecting one another has to be the norm. No matter what gender, or what part of the world, or what class or what background someone comes from, mutual respect and rights have to be practiced. Its the first step at the world working together in bettering so many aspects of life, like, work, education, business, politics, and family.