Dear Predator Trying to Explain Himself Away in Light of Harvey Weinstein, Roy Moore and Al Franken,
How’s things? Feeling stressed lately? A little off your game? Although I’m in awe of the women who have come forward recently with their stories of abuse, victimization and assault, I can only imagine that you are scared shitless.
Here’s the thing about those stories, dark one. They’re not fiction. They are truths. You know it as well as I know it. If you are worried, you may want to think about why that could be. I’m confident that men who have not victimized women are not trying to recall things that they’ve done that may come back to haunt them. Why? They’ve done nothing wrong. Your worry is compliments of actual events, things YOU did. You.
You may twist and spin this to say that there’s a culture of fear among men in the country right now. That any interaction a man has with a woman can be viewed with suspicion. That any glance, word, touch can be viewed as victimization. That women who come forward just want attention.
I call bullshit to all of those theories. A man knows when he is behaving in an inappropriate or abusive way towards a woman. It’s as simple as that. He knows. I have tons of friends and none of them are harboring pain due to the time a guy accidentally brushed up against her or told an off-color joke. We know the difference here and so do you. Stop pretending like you don’t get it.
Good men? They are resting easy. They are keeping track of their fantasy football leagues, taking their daughters to karate, helping their sons with art projects, working hard at their jobs, out having a pint with their friends and generally unaffected by this climate of fear to which you refer. It’s not rocket science either, lil professor. You tend not to worry about getting in trouble for something if you didn’t do something wrong.
Addressing attention-seeking on the part of the accusers? I can assure you that women are not speaking out for fame, attention or any other such nonsense. Telling our stories is extremely traumatic. It’s not something we want exposed for all to hear. It’s not something, for example, I want to have to discuss with my mom or explain to my son or daughter.
Before you call me a hypocrite because I write about domestic violence fairly regularly, let me tell you something. I write for the very same reason more and more women are telling their stories. We want justice. It’s a beautiful word. And not at all elusive. We want to live in a world where justice thrives and women are safe from the harm we experienced at your hands and the hands of men like you.
I suppose your best course of action right now is to mimic the behavior these brave women have so kindly modeled for you. Tell the fucking truth. Admit your culpability. Make amends. Get help. But for God’s sake, start first by telling the truth. I’ve heard it will set you free.