#MeToo: Nicole Stamp’s 14 Things People Can Do to Help Women

“My initial reaction was Oh this again”  Nicole Stamp told CBC Radio on the viral #Metoo hashtag. 

Decent men wanted to know what they could do to help.

“Every single woman, [every] trans woman that I know has been sexually assaulted and sexually harassed, and I don’t think that should be a surprise to anybody anymore.” Stamp revealed to CBC. “Every now and then we’re expected to tell our stories of pain and I sometimes don’t know why. I don’t understand why we have to do that, like, who are we trying to prove this to?”

When the hashtag went viral, she heard from many male friends – good decent men – asking: How can I help? Stamp wrote an essay on Facebook to answer these decent men.

A few of the 14 things…

Here’s a few points from the essay. They describe concrete ways that men – in fact, people of any gender – can help improve the climate for the women around them.  To read all 14 Things go here. 

 Practice these phrases: “That’s not cool” and “That’s a shitty thing to say”. Say them to other men who are saying disrespectful things to or about women.

Follow some feminist writers on social media. Sometimes what they write may seem “exhausting” or “too angry”. Put aside that discomfort because that feeling is your male privilege allowing you to disengage from an important conversation that womxn don’t get to disengage from.

Boost female voices. When there’s an issue and you’re going to share an article about it- especially if it’s a gender issue- take a minute and try to find one written by a woman.

Boost what women say at work. Listen for men dismissing women’s contributions and make a habit of listening and saying things like “Hey Zahra has a point”.

At work or out in the world, don’t call female colleagues or strangers cutesy diminutive names like “honey, baby, darling, kiddo, young lady, sweetheart, girl, or dear”. This is a subtle way of putting them down, elevating your own status over them as a man who is choosing to vote them as attractive, and reminding them and all present that they’re just cute little ladies that nobody should listen to.

Seek enthusiastic consent in your sexual encounters.

Don’t use gendered or misogynist insults. Bitch, cunt, slut, pussy, f*g, girly, sissy, cuck, etc.

Be wary of constantly or only telling little girls they’re pretty and cute or commenting on their hairstyle & clothing. I know, little girls often wear fun stuff and it’s easy to comment on.

 

 

 

 

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