A lot of people are doing a lot of talking recently. They’re talking about something that is long overdue. Non-consensual and inappropriate treatment of females (and sometimes also males) by men with privilege and power.
Adam Sandler didn’t molest me. What Adam Sandler did do, is put his hand on an actress’ knee. Sandler did it without asking. An innocuous and possibly harmless action. It doesn’t rise to the level of many of the other bad behaviors being discussed recently. Why am even talking about Adam Sandler at all? Why am I bringing up this minor incident? I bring it up because of how technology works and how quick people are to notice inappropriate behavior and call it out. Go on Twitter and type in Adam Sandler. Take note of how many people called him out for putting his hand on a woman’s knee.
Conversations about culture are changing. Sandler may have been oblivious to the way his hand made Claire Foy uncomfortable, but the Twitterverse was not. The uproar was immediate. Nearly ubiquitous connectedness is changing the way all of us think and act, to one degree or another. Sometimes it’s for the worse but I think more often it’s for the better. What’s undeniably changed permanently is the speed at which community cultures change. As long as everyone’s connected together this way, there are always going to be new voices emerging out of the crowd chaos, helping the collective grow and improve as a community, sometimes, like now, seemingly overnight. The crowd doesn’t always get it exactly right, but crowds never have. That doesn’t mean that we aren’t collectively changing for the better.
Community outrage and constant connectedness are messy, but I’m all for them if the end result is bringing down powerful, privileged consent abusers, and preventing possible future abusers from spending decades getting away with criminal behavior. I don’t care how rich and powerful you are, it’s never okay to touch someone without asking first, and it’s definitely not okay to pressure them because of your position in life into giving you something they don’t want to give.
The era of non-consensual patriarchy dominating the political and spiritual realms of our lives is dying on the vine. It is dying messily, but that’s generally how entrenched cultural memes go out. Being defended by morons who say they represent the will of various gods, that the old ways are good enough, that they’ve done nothing wrong. Bullshit to all of that, and good riddance to each and every abuser who loses power, prestige, or privilege because of their past behavior.
Ask before you touch. Don’t be a bully. Stop abusing people just because you think you can get away with it. You won’t anymore. That era is coming to a close. We all have a voice now.
Also published on Medium.