This column may contain strong language, sexual content, adult humor, and other themes that may not be suitable for minors. Parental guidance is strongly advised.
So even Barack Obama has had enough.
“Men have been getting on my nerves,” he remarked during a speech to young professionals at a town hall event in Johannesburg the other day.
“Every day I read the newspaper and I just think, ‘Brothers, what’s wrong with you guys? What’s wrong with us?’ We’re violent, we’re bullying, we’re just not handling our business.”
Yes, guys, what the hell is wrong with you?
A quick look back at recent events that has given credence to Obama’s statement. From self-styled macho politicians playing tough guys on the domestic stage but swivelling pathetically when face-to-face on the international stage with another, more powerful alpha male who has everyone else by the balls—typical bully behavior by the way—to basketball players engaging in a bloody brawl against a foreign team in a purported attempt to defend their national honor, yet doing nothing to defend their country’s sovereignty as a foreign government unilaterally appropriates their islands.
There are journalists being shot—no doubt ordered by men threatened by the truth and executed by men all too willing to curry favor with those in power—such as Joey Llana in Legazpi, prompting the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines to say, “If proven to be related to his work, his death would be the 12th media killing under President Rodrigo Duterte, the third in Bicol and the 185th since 1986.”
There are also school children being shot, almost always BY white men who’ve been spurned by women and can’t get laid. You’d think that if a girl turns them down, they’d maybe try and do some soul-searching, see a therapist, or channel their frustrations by doing something constructive, like working out at the gym, volunteering at a shelter or helping out at a feeding program for the homeless. They could even do something creative like write, or draw, or compose music. But no, they think poetry is for p*ssies so they arm themselves with an assault rifle, barge into a school and spray classrooms with bullets, killing young students and injuring scores more.
Way to go, big boy. Like you just increased your chances of getting laid.
And then there is domestic abuse. In the midst of the World Cup euphoria which saw England with a real chance of reaching the finals, there was a chilling post that was circulated in social media. It said: “No one wants England to win more than women. Domestic Abuse rates increase by 38 percent when England lose. Show violence the red card.”
1/2 Give Domestic Abuse the Red Card
Officers are issuing a robust warning that domestic abuse
will not be tolerated before, during or after the #WorldCup
— Cleveland Police UK (@ClevelandPolice) June 12, 2018
What does it say about a man if his reaction to his team losing is to beat up his partner? No doubt excessive drinking exacerbates his fury at being defeated, but for heaven’s sake, how does pummeling a woman compensate for the loss?
According to official statistics, two women are killed every week in England by a partner or ex-partner. In the Philippines, one in four married women has suffered domestic violence at the hands of their partner, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority.
“One in five (20 percent) women has ever experienced emotional violence, 14 percent has ever experienced physical violence, and five percent has ever experienced sexual violence by their current or most recent husband or partner.”
The findings were collected during the 2017 National Demographic and Health Survey, which defined spousal violence as violence perpetrated by partners in a marital union, with spousal or intimate partner violence the most common form of violence for women aged 15-49. In the course of the survey, currently married women were asked about violence perpetrated by their current husband or partner, and formerly married women were asked about violence perpetrated by their most recent husband or partner.
In the midst of all this comes actor Henry Cavill who equated flirting or chatting up a woman as an invitation to being called a rapist in an interview with GQ Australia:
“Because then it’s like: ‘Well, I don’t want to go up and talk to her, because I’m going to be called a rapist or something.’ So you’re like, ‘Forget it, I’m going to call an ex-girlfriend instead, and then just go back to a relationship, which never really worked.’ But it’s way safer than casting myself into the fires of hell, because I’m someone in the public eye, and if I go and flirt with someone, then who knows what’s going to happen? Now? Now you really can’t pursue someone further than, ‘No.’ It’s like, ‘OK, cool.’ But then there’s the, ‘Oh why’d you give up?’ And it’s like, ‘Well, because I didn’t want to go to jail?’”
The logic behind this argument is spectacularly flawed and stupid. If a simple chat-up line leads to an accusation of rape, wouldn’t that be the result of the man’s aggression? Talk about an idiotic cop-out. As Bustle reported, journalist Niecy O’Keeffe called Cavill out on Twitter.
Dear Confused Men like Henry Cavill,
No one’s going to call you a rapist for saying, ‘Hello,’ to a woman.
They will only call you a rapist if you rape them.
Hope this clears up any remaining confusion.
An Actual Woman.
P.S: If still confused, ask yer Ma.
— Niecy O’Keeffe (@NiecyOKeeffe) July 12, 2018
To his credit, Cavill apologized for his inane comments, but frankly, if this is how so-called educated, exposed, and decent men think, then really, no wonder Obama is exasperated with his gender and called for women to step up.“…So I think empowering more women… —that right away is going to lead to some better policies.”
All this bullying and violence from men really just highlights a simple truth: Cowardice is mainly the province of men.
B. Wiser is the author of Making Love in Spanish, a novel published by Anvil Publishing and available in National Book Store and Powerbooks, as well as online. When not assuming her Sasha Fierce alter-ego, she takes on the role of serious journalist and media consultant.
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Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in her private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Preen.ph, or any other entity of the Inquirer Group of Companies.
Art by Marian Hukom
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