Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

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orthogon
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby orthogon » Sat Dec 09, 2017 9:56 pm UTC

idonno wrote:
eran_rathan wrote:Why does it make you feel like you have to walk on eggshells?
I don't know about the specific case but there are an lot of people that aren't anywhere near as skilled at reading social cues as others assume they should be. "No" may mean "no" but when someone assumes that they have told someone "no" without actually telling them "no" it can make the rejected person look like someone who won't take "no" for an answer when they are still trying to determine what the answer is. Nobody wants to be perceived as socially incompetent or as the guy who can't take "no" for an answer so "eggshells".

I think it's the combination of this with what ObsessoMom, Ginger, Morris et al are saying, that lead to complex situation for many of us. You've got difficulty on the receive side (reading social cues), combined with lack of clarity on the transmit side (ambiguous/mixed signals, euphemism, face-saving, playing hard-to-get, etc.). In my experience, there's always been an element of pleading involved in a sexual encounter. The first night we went home together, my now wife was definitely giving the impression she wasn't up for anything other than listening to music. Things went somewhere after we started dancing together to said music, but not before I'd been on the receiving end of what I now know to have been teasing. Now I know that she was totally into me from the first time we met. On another occasion, one girl asked me crossly "why do you assume I'd want to kiss you?" (if she'd known anything about me, she'd know I would never assume any such thing) before doing exactly that. Basically, I've mainly had success when I have pushed myself and the situation beyond what I'm completely comfortable with. I'm not talking about forcing myself on somebody without any positive signs and certainly not against explicitly expressed wishes, but I am talking about not giving up in the face of apparent reluctance. But in those cases the result showed that I was, in effect, right to do so. Perhaps somebody more neurotypical observing the situation would say "of course she was teasing you" or "you must have been reading the signs after all", and perhaps at some subconscious level I really was. But for shy people like me it never gets easier, and we probably err on unnecessarily on the side of caution, missing out on many potential liaisons, relationships and marriages as a result.

My guess is that for the sexual harrasser personality type, it works the other way: each time that happens it's a positive reinforcement of the idea that being pushy and not taking "no" for an answer is the way to get results. I guess that extends to doing things that I'd consider totally unacceptable, like grabbing somebody and kissing them without any exploratory first moves. If the other person is up for it, that will probably pay off; indeed, given that most people find confidence attractive, it might even work more often than a more tentative approach. Given what Ginger said, even the very wrongness of it might be attractive to some women. Of course, a lot of the time the recipient won't want it at all, but historically all they could do was administer a slap or endure it. It's the result of those encounters that we're seeing now.

CorruptUser wrote:The problem is when you are trying to treat them like humans while still trying to ask them out. Basic rule is don't ask them out unless there is an actual reason the person would date you. Random person on the street? Who the hell are you and what do we have in common? I just want to get from my apartment to the grocery store and back without being harassed. Person at the same professional convention? Oh, you are an attorney too; what field of practice? Tort, really me too! Say, want to grab a cup of coffee while we discuss our best horror stories?

I met a girl on a street once and approached her. Unfortunately, the street was in Paris, where I didn't live, but we had an on-and-off thing for several years after that and I think both feel it was a very positive thing overall. The way we'd met was part of our story that we both liked to bring up. I don't accept that it's wrong to approach someone in the street or anywhere; in fact in some ways it's the professional convention example that I find more questionable, since people might (I know it's a stretch, but hear me out) have gone there for entirely professional reasons. In general, I wish I had more courage to speak to strangers, since it is usually a very enjoyable experience, quite aside from the potential it might have to lead to something romantic or platonic. We're a social species, and meeting people, especially in a context where it's easy for both parties to escape, is a positive and natural thing. And when this happens between two people of compatible genders, sexualities and relationship statuses, there's always the chance that it could go somewhere very mutually desirable.
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby sardia » Sat Dec 09, 2017 10:20 pm UTC

Spoiler:
orthogon wrote:
idonno wrote:
eran_rathan wrote:Why does it make you feel like you have to walk on eggshells?
I don't know about the specific case but there are an lot of people that aren't anywhere near as skilled at reading social cues as others assume they should be. "No" may mean "no" but when someone assumes that they have told someone "no" without actually telling them "no" it can make the rejected person look like someone who won't take "no" for an answer when they are still trying to determine what the answer is. Nobody wants to be perceived as socially incompetent or as the guy who can't take "no" for an answer so "eggshells".

I think it's the combination of this with what ObsessoMom, Ginger, Morris et al are saying, that lead to complex situation for many of us. You've got difficulty on the receive side (reading social cues), combined with lack of clarity on the transmit side (ambiguous/mixed signals, euphemism, face-saving, playing hard-to-get, etc.). In my experience, there's always been an element of pleading involved in a sexual encounter. The first night we went home together, my now wife was definitely giving the impression she wasn't up for anything other than listening to music. Things went somewhere after we started dancing together to said music, but not before I'd been on the receiving end of what I now know to have been teasing. Now I know that she was totally into me from the first time we met. On another occasion, one girl asked me crossly "why do you assume I'd want to kiss you?" (if she'd known anything about me, she'd know I would never assume any such thing) before doing exactly that. Basically, I've mainly had success when I have pushed myself and the situation beyond what I'm completely comfortable with. I'm not talking about forcing myself on somebody without any positive signs and certainly not against explicitly expressed wishes, but I am talking about not giving up in the face of apparent reluctance. But in those cases the result showed that I was, in effect, right to do so. Perhaps somebody more neurotypical observing the situation would say "of course she was teasing you" or "you must have been reading the signs after all", and perhaps at some subconscious level I really was. But for shy people like me it never gets easier, and we probably err on unnecessarily on the side of caution, missing out on many potential liaisons, relationships and marriages as a result.

My guess is that for the sexual harrasser personality type, it works the other way: each time that happens it's a positive reinforcement of the idea that being pushy and not taking "no" for an answer is the way to get results. I guess that extends to doing things that I'd consider totally unacceptable, like grabbing somebody and kissing them without any exploratory first moves. If the other person is up for it, that will probably pay off; indeed, given that most people find confidence attractive, it might even work more often than a more tentative approach. Given what Ginger said, even the very wrongness of it might be attractive to some women. Of course, a lot of the time the recipient won't want it at all, but historically all they could do was administer a slap or endure it. It's the result of those encounters that we're seeing now.

CorruptUser wrote:The problem is when you are trying to treat them like humans while still trying to ask them out. Basic rule is don't ask them out unless there is an actual reason the person would date you. Random person on the street? Who the hell are you and what do we have in common? I just want to get from my apartment to the grocery store and back without being harassed. Person at the same professional convention? Oh, you are an attorney too; what field of practice? Tort, really me too! Say, want to grab a cup of coffee while we discuss our best horror stories?

I met a girl on a street once and approached her. Unfortunately, the street was in Paris, where I didn't live, but we had an on-and-off thing for several years after that and I think both feel it was a very positive thing overall. The way we'd met was part of our story that we both liked to bring up. I don't accept that it's wrong to approach someone in the street or anywhere; in fact in some ways it's the professional convention example that I find more questionable, since people might (I know it's a stretch, but hear me out) have gone there for entirely professional reasons. In general, I wish I had more courage to speak to strangers, since it is usually a very enjoyable experience, quite aside from the potential it might have to lead to something romantic or platonic. We're a social species, and meeting people, especially in a context where it's easy for both parties to escape, is a positive and natural thing. And when this happens between two people of compatible genders, sexualities and relationship statuses, there's always the chance that it could go somewhere very mutually desirable.

For starters, don't treat random women on the street like your wife, who you can badger for sex. Are you over thirty? Don't try to 'seduce' teenagers. Don't ask your coworkers or subordinates if x(pornographic material, surrogacy etc etc) is a sexual turn on. Don't try to erotically stimulate women at work. Don't be like a construction worker, who hoot at women. Don't invite coworkers to dinner/event and then fire them/retaliate when they refuse to perform sexual acts. Don't ask random women to exchange sex in return for favors.

Pretty much just look up all the news, and don't do any of that. You haven't done any of these things, right? Chances are, if you do something minor that is wrong, you won't get in trouble anyway. When you get castigated for something stupid, you can tell everyone about how you were right. If we ignore odd scenarios where you could be raping your wife or girlfriend, it's pretty clear what to do.

PS: Here's some predictors/bad signs if you should worry about work place sexual harassment or not:
https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/th ... ry-twitter
If you report sexual harassment, will there be retaliation?
Is your workforce really young? (40% between 21-24?)
Is your work decentralized?
Is there a clear and transparent procedure to report sexual harassment?
Is there a power disparity(aka superstar harassers)? Like if your best salesman/engineer/etc felt up a woman, would you put kid gloves on?
Is your workplace mostly led by men? Or mostly male in general?

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby morriswalters » Sun Dec 10, 2017 2:27 pm UTC

I wish my world was as simple as yours seems to be. To begin with women are not required to paste their age on their forehead. And unless you have super powers I doubt that you can tell a 16 year old from someone 5 years older than that, just by observation. I can see the overtures. "Miss, I don't wish to be unseemly, but are you past the age of consent?" Or perhaps, "Mam, am I attractive enough to propose dinner and drinks? Oh, and by the way, are you past the age of consent?" Substitute any gender pronouns that suit you. Exactly how do you make the decision to interact with someone of your preferred gender?

And if you can get either gender, in totality, to avoid hooking up at work, please let me know where it is, I want to work there. It will be pretty pleasant not to have to put up with the horseshit that experience tells me that goes on in the workplace.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby sardia » Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:42 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:I wish my world was as simple as yours seems to be. To begin with women are not required to paste their age on their forehead. And unless you have super powers I doubt that you can tell a 16 year old from someone 5 years older than that, just by observation. I can see the overtures. "Miss, I don't wish to be unseemly, but are you past the age of consent?" Or perhaps, "Mam, am I attractive enough to propose dinner and drinks? Oh, and by the way, are you past the age of consent?" Substitute any gender pronouns that suit you. Exactly how do you make the decision to interact with someone of your preferred gender?

And if you can get either gender, in totality, to avoid hooking up at work, please let me know where it is, I want to work there. It will be pretty pleasant not to have to put up with the horseshit that experience tells me that goes on in the workplace.

Have you run into times where you seduced teenagers in your advanced age? And when you do find out they are underaged, do you break it off?
Being unattractive is in the eyes of the beholder. More importantly, I'm saying you shouldn't retaliate or badger them when the woman rejects you. If you did something wrong it's highly unlikely she'll risk reporting you unless it's egregious.
I dunno if you're still in the workplace, but being aware of power dynamics and taking complaints seriously is what matters.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby CorruptUser » Sun Dec 10, 2017 5:02 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Being unattractive is in the eyes of the beholder.


Not really. There are very few things that make a person attractive that aren't some variation of the person being healthy or of high social status. Some have some preferences, e.g., auburn vs strawberry blonde, green vs blue eyed, but those are minor in comparison to health and status. Personally, I have a soft spot for green and amber eyes, but that's not nearly as important for me as having a decent education, good health, good job, and so forth.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby morriswalters » Sun Dec 10, 2017 9:26 pm UTC

sardia wrote:Have you run into times where you seduced teenagers in your advanced age?
I couldn't seduce teenagers when I was one, and at this stage of my life the point is moot. And I didn't have to guess that I was ugly, women told me. When I finally lost my virginity womenhood in general was still safe. It was a purely financial transaction.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby CorruptUser » Sun Dec 10, 2017 10:00 pm UTC

As an older guy, as long as you are willing to date someone close to your own age, you'll be able to find someone. You just have to take the most important advice any guy struggling to date has to take; get over yourself, you aren't the lovechild of Richard Branson and Fabio, so stop expecting that you are going to end up with the lovechild of Selma Hayek and Summer Glau.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby idonno » Sun Dec 10, 2017 11:50 pm UTC

sardia wrote:If you did something wrong it's highly unlikely she'll risk reporting you unless it's egregious.
You keep talking about getting in trouble and being reported but people care about more things than that. We live in a culture where social crucifixions are carried out with incredible swiftness often before the crucified even knows anything is happening making it very difficult to defend themself before people have already picked a side. Interactions are already difficult for people who can't read situations as well. This shift has brought about a lot of good but if you can't see how it is legitimately threatening to some people who have done nothing worse than miss out on social cues, I doubt this line of debate with you is going to go anywhere.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby sardia » Mon Dec 11, 2017 3:51 am UTC

idonno wrote: You keep talking about getting in trouble and being reported but people care about more things than that. We live in a culture where social crucifixions are carried out with incredible swiftness often before the crucified even knows anything is happening making it very difficult to defend themself before people have already picked a side. Interactions are already difficult for people who can't read situations as well. This shift has brought about a lot of good but if you can't see how it is legitimately threatening to some people who have done nothing worse than miss out on social cues, I doubt this line of debate with you is going to go anywhere.

Are you speaking out of personal experience, or seen it happen to a person you personally know and met? Like do false rape accusations spike/fall after Anita Hill's failed sexual accusations on Justice Thomas? Is there a correlation you can show with data?

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby Ginger » Mon Dec 11, 2017 9:15 am UTC

It's all well and nice to point at the news and go, "Look at these crimes don't do them!" But real life is a lot more complex than that. I agree with the notion of asking your partner relevant questions about their age and everything. Even if it seems like a hassle knowing your partner's age, their sexual limits and other things that may be relevant would be important to discuss in an honest fashion. They might not answer truthfully but then anybody can lie. I do agree that men shouldn't retaliate when a woman makes a report though. And that bit about public crucifixion is totally true: You can be accused of a crime, not intend to do that crime at all and still be found Guilty. That said I think leaving the decisions up to the victims of when to report is the best idea as well as taking every report seriously.
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Dec 11, 2017 3:13 pm UTC

idonno wrote:This shift has brought about a lot of good but if you can't see how it is legitimately threatening to some people who have done nothing worse than miss out on social cues, I doubt this line of debate with you is going to go anywhere.
Okay, first off: Relax. You're not going to accidentally sexually harass someone. I mean, yes, it's technically possible -- in the same sense it's technically possible that this post was composed by a random letter generator. But speaking as someone with all the social grace of an shaved baboon, I can tell you that as long as you give a shit about the comfort of those around you, you'll probably be fine.

Consent is hard, yes. But it's not impossible -- and it's something you get better at as time goes on. Until you're good at it, focus on flirting with people who you know are consenting to it (or, at least, are comfortable enough to turn you down without any fuss).

As for false accusations -- in all my storied years of work in retail, I've only encountered one case. And it was pretty obvious. I mean, yes; there's a non-zero risk someone will try and destroy an innocent person's career. But the people who do that are usually really bad at it.

For just one example, check out the lady who tried to bait the Washington Post with a false Moore accusation. They picked up on it being false almost immediately. Why? Well, besides the fact that it's their job -- there's also just the fact that people who lie about this sort of thing tend not to be really clever or creative. It doesn't take long to figure them out.

The point being only this: I understand how this sort of thing can make a guy nervous, but -- unless you're grabbing people's butts, exposing yourself, or regularly flirting with your employees (while either ignoring or just flat-out failing to notice their attempts to get you to knock it the fuck off), you're going to be fine.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby eran_rathan » Mon Dec 11, 2017 4:10 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:I wish my world was as simple as yours seems to be. To begin with women are not required to paste their age on their forehead. And unless you have super powers I doubt that you can tell a 16 year old from someone 5 years older than that, just by observation. I can see the overtures. "Miss, I don't wish to be unseemly, but are you past the age of consent?" Or perhaps, "Mam, am I attractive enough to propose dinner and drinks? Oh, and by the way, are you past the age of consent?" Substitute any gender pronouns that suit you. Exactly how do you make the decision to interact with someone of your preferred gender?

And if you can get either gender, in totality, to avoid hooking up at work, please let me know where it is, I want to work there. It will be pretty pleasant not to have to put up with the horseshit that experience tells me that goes on in the workplace.


"Hey, I'm going to the pub after work for a drink. Would you care to join me?" "No? That's fine, have a great evening, see you tomorrow."
"You've expressed interest in $thing, and I've got $related-thing coming up. Are you interested in joining me at $related-thing? No? Ok, if we've another $related-thing in the future I'll let you know if you like."

I mean, do people think grabbing other people wherever (not even sexually, but just grabbing them) is ok? (according the law, it could be battery. Or assault. Depends on jurisdiction etc.) Or heck, even hugs? "Is it alright if I give you a hug?" takes about two seconds to say, and a response a few seconds longer, and if you can't wait that long to give someone a hug perhaps you should pause and reflect for a few moments before doing things. Take a deep breath and count to ten. And yes, this is stuff I have to remind my kid about, poor impulse control and all that, but controlling your impulses is part of what makes civilization work.
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby morriswalters » Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:05 pm UTC

I don't dispute that. What I do add is that it will not always be black and white. The devil lives in the grey areas.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby Sableagle » Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:27 pm UTC

Re: eggshells

I still feel a bit foolish about the time I watched a woman hit the tarmac in front of me. I'd seen her sway and knew she was about to fall. I started to catch her. Then the idea that I'd be touching her without her consent and while in uniform if I did so and could get into a heap of trouble for it flashed into my mind and I jumped back out of the way and let her fall.

Crazy, eh?

Also I still recall the time a Warrant Officer told me someone who hadn't even been there had accused me of sexually harassing someone else because she'd have felt harassed if it had been her and that I was very lucky the person who'd called me an angel at the time had refused to make a complaint.

Refused. Seriously. I thought it was supposed to be about whether she felt harassed, not about whether someone else wanted her to feel harassed. See also: wolf-whistling. 'pparently not, in some places.

He went on to tell me I should probably just never talk to women at all.

Weird workplace, that was.

Oh, well. No big deal. It's not like we were supposed to be playing a vital role in protecting national securi..... oh, wait. Shit. Shit? Shit.

... so, yes, the eggshells thing is real.

That said, Deputy Fischer and Donald Drumpf clearly weren't ever feeling that way. Neither was Jimmy Savile.
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby ObsessoMom » Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:51 pm UTC

I second eran_rathan's advice to ask permission before inflicting a perhaps-unwelcome hug on someone.

As the recipient of many, many hugs that have triggered my PTSD, while the hugger has remained cheerfully oblivious to the fact that they were teleporting me back to hell, I am happy to see the whole "Well, I'm just a huggy person, and my hugs are completely innocent, so anyone who has a problem with them is overreacting" defense starting to be reconsidered by huggy people.

It's not about you, and what a huggy person you may be.

It's about the other person, and what an un-huggy person he or she may be.

Always ask whether it would be okay to hug anyone other than a very close friend or immediate family member.

Realize that others in the past may have harmed that person in a similar posture (pulling them close and holding them tight so that they couldn't escape). Being unable to escape an unsolicited hug from you, even if well-intentioned, may cause them to relive that bad experience.

The fact that you intend no harm does not negate the fact that you may be causing harm.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby Pfhorrest » Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:13 pm UTC

Maybe I'm unusual, but whenever I "hug" someone, my actions usually consist of opening my arms to invite them to come get hugged, not just wrapping my arms around them immediately. Is something like that, a nonverbal hug-invitation, still unwelcome by hug-averse people?
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:19 pm UTC

Can we agree that the only way to hug someone is like a winged devourer?

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby sardia » Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:35 pm UTC

Sableagle wrote:Re: eggshells
I still feel a bit foolish about the time I watched a woman hit the tarmac in front of me. I'd seen her sway and knew she was about to fall. I started to catch her. Then the idea that I'd be touching her without her consent and while in uniform if I did so and could get into a heap of trouble for it flashed into my mind and I jumped back out of the way and let her fall.

Crazy, eh?
Also I still recall the time a Warrant Officer told me someone who hadn't even been there had accused me of sexually harassing someone else because she'd have felt harassed if it had been her and that I was very lucky the person who'd called me an angel at the time had refused to make a complaint.

Refused. Seriously. I thought it was supposed to be about whether she felt harassed, not about whether someone else wanted her to feel harassed. See also: wolf-whistling. 'pparently not, in some places.
He went on to tell me I should probably just never talk to women at all.

Weird workplace, that was.
Oh, well. No big deal. It's not like we were supposed to be playing a vital role in protecting national securi..... oh, wait. Shit. Shit? Shit.

... so, yes, the eggshells thing is real.
That said, Deputy Fischer and Donald Drumpf clearly weren't ever feeling that way. Neither was Jimmy Savile.

What would have happened if she had pursued her case? What would have been the risks for the two women involved? ( The ballsy one said Something, and the other who didn't say anything negative to you) What would have been the likely effect on each person's career? Can you elaborate on what happened? I'm not casting blame here, just want to explore your real life example.

Edit: Are you saying some women consider wolf whistle a complement?

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Dec 11, 2017 6:40 pm UTC

A girl filed a provably wrong "attempted rape" report against me and never received any bit of consequence that I'm aware of. Twice.

Part of how I ended up on prom court...

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby ObsessoMom » Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:16 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:A girl filed a provably wrong "attempted rape" report against me and never received any bit of consequence that I'm aware of. Twice.

Part of how I ended up on prom court...

CorruptUser, are you saying that some of the people voting for prom court gave you extra points for having been accused of attempted rape, or that they gave you extra points for having been falsely accused of attempted rape?

Pfhorrest wrote:Maybe I'm unusual, but whenever I "hug" someone, my actions usually consist of opening my arms to invite them to come get hugged, not just wrapping my arms around them immediately. Is something like that, a nonverbal hug-invitation, still unwelcome by hug-averse people?

Personally, I would interpret that as the non-verbal equivalent of asking permission. That gives me the opportunity to either take the direct approach of saying "Oh, thanks, but I'm not a hugger," or (if I don't want to run the risk of having to explain why I'm not a hugger) the indirect approach of coughing into my hand and saying, "Oh, I'd better not get too close, but I appreciate the offer."

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby idonno » Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:35 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:Okay, first off: Relax.
What makes you think I'm not relaxed. I'm not even really personally concerned. I'm pessimistic enough that, if anything, I misread situations the other way.
The Great Hippo wrote:You're not going to accidentally sexually harass someone. I mean, yes, it's technically possible -- in the same sense it's technically possible that this post was composed by a random letter generator. But speaking as someone with all the social grace of an shaved baboon, I can tell you that as long as you give a shit about the comfort of those around you, you'll probably be fine.
Exactly how is giving a shit about something while possessing inadequate capabilities to gauge it going to help?
The Great Hippo wrote:Consent is hard, yes. But it's not impossible -- and it's something you get better at as time goes on. Until you're good at it, focus on flirting with people who you know are consenting to it (or, at least, are comfortable enough to turn you down without any fuss).
This isn't about getting advice. It is about people trying to tell others that struggle with situations that it isn't a big deal. It isn't helpful and it is condescending as hell. Different people struggle in different situations and in different ways. This isn't an argument for or against any change. Just when someone says something like "I have to walk on eggshells" don't just go off explaining to them how they are wrong and they don't really have to do that. They may be facing issues you aren't. If you feel you have experience that might be helpful, instead of telling someone how things are for them, you should just share it as what has helped you.

sardia wrote:Edit: Are you saying some women consider wolf whistle a complement?
I'd be surprised if there were no women who would take it as a compliment. In fact when I googled if it was a compliment to see if any info was readily available (I probably should have done that with private browsing) the first result that came up was a woman arguing it. Humans are weird.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Dec 11, 2017 8:24 pm UTC

ObsessoMom wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:A girl filed a provably wrong "attempted rape" report against me and never received any bit of consequence that I'm aware of. Twice.

Part of how I ended up on prom court...

CorruptUser, are you saying that some of the people voting for prom court gave you extra points for having been accused of attempted rape, or that they gave you extra points for having been falsely accused of attempted rape?



Part of the *story of how I ended up on prom court. Ducking phone.

I got on prom/homecoming court because of the feud with the girl. The feud resulted in both prom/homecoming court and the false rape accusations, and voting for the prom court happened before the rape accusation IIRC. The first accusation happened, actually I'm not sure when, but it was "stalking as if he was going to molest" or some such nonsense; I didn't even find out about the first one until the second accusation. Story is kind of bizarre as well.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby orthogon » Mon Dec 11, 2017 8:59 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:
ObsessoMom wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:A girl filed a provably wrong "attempted rape" report against me and never received any bit of consequence that I'm aware of. Twice.

Part of how I ended up on prom court...

CorruptUser, are you saying that some of the people voting for prom court gave you extra points for having been accused of attempted rape, or that they gave you extra points for having been falsely accused of attempted rape?



Part of the *story of how I ended up on prom court. Ducking phone.

I got on prom/homecoming court because of the feud with the girl. The feud resulted in both prom/homecoming court and the false rape accusations, and voting for the prom court happened before the rape accusation IIRC. The first accusation happened before, but it was "stalking as if he was going to molest" or some such nonsense; I didn't even find out about the first one until the second accusation. Story is kind of bizarre as well.

I had to Google what the heck y'all were talking about. I know you have campus police and stuff, so it seemed plausible that there was a parallel judicial system set up to try offences committed at High School Proms. Going by what we hear, it would have plenty to keep it busy.
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Dec 11, 2017 9:01 pm UTC

Prom and accusations were separate events, both the result of the feud.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby Sableagle » Mon Dec 11, 2017 10:23 pm UTC

sardia wrote:
Sableagle wrote:Re: eggshells
Spoiler:
I still feel a bit foolish about the time I watched a woman hit the tarmac in front of me. I'd seen her sway and knew she was about to fall. I started to catch her. Then the idea that I'd be touching her without her consent and while in uniform if I did so and could get into a heap of trouble for it flashed into my mind and I jumped back out of the way and let her fall.

Crazy, eh?
Also I still recall the time a Warrant Officer told me someone who hadn't even been there had accused me of sexually harassing someone else because she'd have felt harassed if it had been her and that I was very lucky the person who'd called me an angel at the time had refused to make a complaint.

Refused. Seriously. I thought it was supposed to be about viewtopic.php?p=4279579#whether she felt harassed, not about whether someone else wanted her to feel harassed. See also: wolf-whistling. 'pparently not, in some places.
He went on to tell me I should probably just never talk to women at all.

Weird workplace, that was.
Oh, well. No big deal. It's not like we were supposed to be playing a vital role in protecting national securi..... oh, wait. Shit. Shit? Shit.

... so, yes, the eggshells thing is real.
That said, Deputy Fischer and Donald Drumpf clearly weren't ever feeling that way. Neither was Jimmy Savile.

What would have happened if she had pursued her case? What would have been the risks for the two women involved? ( The ballsy one said Something, and the other who didn't say anything negative to you) What would have been the likely effect on each person's career? Can you elaborate on what happened? I'm not casting blame here, just want to explore your real life example.

Edit: Are you saying some women consider wolf whistle a complement?


No, I was saying that whether it was meant as a compliment or as harassment doesn't affect whether it counts as harassment.

The one who didn't say anything negative to me also refused to say anything negative about me when pressed to do so by someone who wasn't there, who'd heard from someone else who wasn't there that she should have felt harassed because it's, like, totally not okay that Sableagle was talking to her, like, at all.

Considering that one of my two suspects for who decided to dictate that lady's feelings to her was the one who told lies about me in my first week on the job and they resulted in me being told: "I don't care how many times this has happened or even whether it's true or not. The fact she's made the accusation means you're not trying hard enough to get along with her," I reckon the risks to her for making the complaint were precisely zero, and she could probably have submitted a written statement that I'd levitated naked across the parade square in broad daylight while a helicopter was landing on it without harming her own career prospects. It's also not beyond belief that the pleasant one could have improved hers by telling the lie that she was told to tell rather that continuing to honestly state that she hadn't had a problem with me.

Like I said, good job nobody was counting on us for information that could have affected major decisions like whether or not to invade Iraq.

Spoiler:
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:57 am UTC

idonno wrote:What makes you think I'm not relaxed. I'm not even really personally concerned.
Okay; but if that's so, why are you bringing this up?
idonno wrote:Exactly how is giving a shit about something while possessing inadequate capabilities to gauge it going to help?
When a thing concerns you, your behavior adapts to account for that thing. That's how self-education works. If you give a shit about it, you'll develop capabilities to gauge it. This can (and often does) happen without you even realizing it.
idonno wrote:This isn't about getting advice. It is about people trying to tell others that struggle with situations that it isn't a big deal. It isn't helpful and it is condescending as hell. Different people struggle in different situations and in different ways. This isn't an argument for or against any change. Just when someone says something like "I have to walk on eggshells" don't just go off explaining to them how they are wrong and they don't really have to do that. They may be facing issues you aren't. If you feel you have experience that might be helpful, instead of telling someone how things are for them, you should just share it as what has helped you.
So you just want to use this space to talk about how you have to walk on eggshells (although you're not actually concerned about having to walk on eggshells), and you don't want anyone to tell you that maybe the eggshells aren't eggshells?

I mean, yeah, maybe I'm being a little condescending -- because the whole "the sexual harassment police might come to get me" is a very, very silly fear. It's one I can understand, but it's based on the fear that comes with a perceived loss of privilege (which actually hasn't even been lost at all). You're seeing a tiny fraction of people finally get shit over something that's been going on forever, and you're nervous because you think they might go just a little too far. Meanwhile, I'm over here thinking "Wow, twenty or so public cases... So what about the millions upon millions of cases that aren't ever made public?"

Because if THIS bothers you, I can't imagine how you'd feel if we all *actually* started taking sexual harassment seriously. Like, how would you feel if suddenly half of Congress was forced to retire? Because I'd be willing to bet money that at least half of Congress has engaged in serious sexual harassment.

I mean, what do you want? "Don't tell me not to walk on eggshells" -- what else do you tell someone who's walking on concrete? At least as far as sexual harassment goes. I mean, I don't know what your deal is in general, but -- if you're a man who actually gives a shit about the comfort of women around him? You'll be fine. That already puts you way ahead of the curve.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby morriswalters » Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:01 am UTC

Like, how would you feel if suddenly half of Congress was forced to retire? Because I'd be willing to bet money that at least half of Congress has engaged in serious sexual harassment.
:lol: An easy statement to make, a statement very difficult to prove.
because the whole "the sexual harassment police might come to get me" is a very, very silly fear.
Well you have never displayed knowledge of fact versus perception of fact.
Still, some workers said they were starting to follow “the Pence rule,” which was formerly known as the Billy Graham rule, after the evangelical preacher, but is now named for Vice President A Wet Rag Stuffed Into a Tailpipe. Mr. Pence has said he does not eat alone with women who are not his wife or attend an event without her if alcohol will be served.
The thing is that if you are one of the men who could theoretically be a target you start thinking of how to avoid being one. Reality has nothing to do with it. What they see are careers being destroyed. And that is what they fear. It isn't rational.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:24 am UTC

morriswalters wrote::lol: An easy statement to make, a statement very difficult to prove.
If you don't think sexual harassment is all-pervasive and under-reported, then you're probably posting in the wrong thread.
The Article wrote:He said he considered himself progressive on gender issues but was thinking more about the behavior he had seen in the past: “What flirting is O.K.? Was I ever taking advantage of any meager power I had? You start to wonder.”
This article actually cheered me up; seeing men start to wonder if their behavior hasn't actually been crossing all sorts of lines is heartening.

Maybe I misunderstood what idonno was saying. Maybe they're saying what's being said in this article: "I'm concerned because I've started to realize that the behavior I presumed was okay isn't -- that I might have been causing harm. So I'm walking on eggshells because I no longer trust my sense of what is and isn't appropriate." If that's all that's being expressed, then I beg their pardon. That isn't a silly fear; that's a pretty reasonable one.

I still have no idea what you're going on about; it sounds like you agree with me, even as you claim to disagree, throw an insult, and cite an article that supports my point. Nevertheless, I appreciate the link.

Semi-related personal aside:
Spoiler:
Part of the reason this frustrates me is because, for whatever reason, I wasn't socialized with men. The behavior most men exhibit in private with other men (talking about women as sexual objects, conquests, so on) is something I never got exposed to until later in my life. I'm not saying that to try and claim a position of moral authority or superiority over other men -- I just want to make it clear where I'm coming from, and why I find this so frustrating even when I don't have a personal stake in it:

I've spent pretty much my entire life (from teenage years onward) being silently horrified with the men around me -- at the things they think are appropriate to say and do. At a certain point, I started to wonder if maybe the problem wasn't me; maybe I was just extremely confused. Maybe my mortification was a bug in my own code rather than everyone else's. Maybe all the men around me knew something I didn't. Maybe I just didn't 'get' it.

Now I've grown up, and I've come to realize that there's nothing to 'get' -- most men are just being gross and horrible. And I feel incredibly frustrated that for the longest time, I didn't realize this -- I didn't confront it -- I even presumed it was normal. I assumed there was something wrong with me for finding it gross. Now that I know otherwise, I try to confront it when I can, but its sheer stubborn pervasiveness is pretty galling.

The majority of sexual harassment is an excretion of an extremely toxic, extremely pervasive hyper-masculine culture that treats women like sexual commodities, then rages at them for daring to take issue with their commodification. We men are swimming up to our eyeballs in it -- it's so pervasive, so normalized that even pointing it out makes you sound like some sort of shrìll, white-knighting 'femi-nazi'. But it's simultaneously so trivially true that to deny it is tantamount to denying that the ocean is 'wet'.

TL;DR: I'm weirdly sensitive about this because it's a validation of something I've felt for a long time, and I'm still a little angry that I exist in a culture that told me to ignore that feeling. My problem with understanding other men's experiences might be part of this -- it's hard for me to understand "walking on eggshells", because what a lot of people consider "walking on eggshells" just sounds -- to me -- like "don't be gross".

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Dec 12, 2017 3:49 am UTC

I have news for you; there's girl-talk that, while not as pervasive as guy-talk, is still there. People are assholes.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Dec 12, 2017 4:00 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:I have news for you; there's girl-talk that, while not as pervasive as guy-talk, is still there. People are assholes.
Did you legitimately believe that this would be news to me?

Like, did you read what I just wrote and thought to yourself: "I bet this person is unaware that women sometimes objectify men, too. I better go tell them!"?

Yes, women commit sexual harassment. We cover that up, too (for different reasons). It's awful and my sympathies go out to anyone who has ever had to deal with it.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby Dauric » Tue Dec 12, 2017 4:55 am UTC

Regarding the "Walking on eggshells":

Hippo mentioned in his personal anecdote the power of socialization on one's upbringing, I would post a sampling of my own experience for consideration:

Not everyone is brought up with a healthy socialization regarding relationships, and these unhealthy socialization are not all "sexually abusive men" in nature. To get not terribly deep in to my own issues I was never socialized about relationships -at all-. My parents put a lot of pressure on me academically, pressure that contributed to my lack of academic performance, and I spent a lot of time 'Grounded'. "Work before play", and socializing and learning to interact with other people was "play". Going to High School in rural Colorado and not having a car (or frankly any reliable transport) until one's senior year is incredibly isolating.

I've managed to become socially functional for most day-to-day interactions with strangers, co-workers, friends, etc. (took 'till my mid-to-late twenties, still feel like I'm learning the basics more than I'd like now in my early forties), however I don't know how to flirt, and it can be days, weeks or even months before the suspicion that a woman was flirting with me at some specific point will intrude on my consciousness (and even then I remain at least half-convinced I'm imagining it). This doesn't mean that I have no desire for female companionship and intimacy, quite the opposite and the dissonance is a significant cause of distress for me. However without a functional socialization and understanding of .. and I'm not sure that I'm using the right word(s) here so bear with me.. romantic/intimate relationships I tend to avoid initiating those interactions (which really sucks as it's typically expected for human males to do so), and I can completely fail to recognize those occasions when I'm invited by a woman I could be interested in to participate in one of those interactions due to my 'terminal cluelessness'.

I'm not an ass (or at least I try not to be), I respect women as human beings and I am glad that the cultural shift we're seeing right now is happening and it's long, long overdue. Combine my desire to be respectful with my overall social inability and I find myself unable to manage a presentation of personality that is .. for lack of better words 'distant', 'detached', 'cold' and/or 'analytical' (which as I've come to understand is not generally attractive). I tend to err on the side of not imposing myself on others, to give others plenty of space to be as they are. Problem is my lack of social upbringing means I lack a good definition of where the boundaries -should- be, so I set the boundaries farther out than I probably should to maintain that respectful space, and I lack the social skill to adjust those bounds with finesse necessary to "not be an ass".

However with the recent high profile demonstrations of significant consequences for those who transgress the "being an ass" threshold I find myself having to suppress a visceral reaction towards pulling back my own boundaries, to further isolate myself in unhealthy distance and detachment. Analytically I know I'm nowhere near the acts that are represented in these high-profile cases, but I find my lack of social skill in a shifting social environment makes the grey areas feel a lot darker than they probably should... maybe... maybe they should feel even darker than they do and I should pull back farther to be safe... (no, I know the latter isn't healthy for me at least on a rational/analytical level, but it's representative of the inner struggle I deal with.)

Grand Upshot: It's difficult enough for I, and (as I would imagine) others with similar social interaction difficulties, to navigate a shifting social environment when we lack the mental and social tools to navigate one that is relatively static. This is (at least for me) what it means to "feel like walking on eggshells".

Heh, I said "to not get terribly deep in to my own issues", and here I go getting deeper in to displaying my personal damage than I'd intended. Oh well, posting it anyway.
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby Ginger » Tue Dec 12, 2017 8:45 am UTC

I was raised in a sexually/physically/even mentally abusive household. My radar on flirting is all kinds of messed up although I tend to see flirting where none exists. I have trouble reading social cues and sometimes harass people. Even criminally. Just because some people have done bad things to you and then you do bad things in return to other people does not justify sexual assault. And a lot of it is creepy, bad men preying on thirteen or fourteen or younger-years-old girls. I was preyed on by men that messed with my understanding of sexuality so badly, by treating me like their sexual servant, that I'm very considerate on how to treat sexual assaulting people. Maybe even coddling them. Anyways, I definitely sympathize with people that are disgusted by the behaviors of the men around them but you have the power to help change your male comrades' behaviors you know?

Just trying talking to them when they treat women like objects. Don't be afraid to scold them. I wouldn't call the cops on them if they were my friends but sometimes that's needed too. Real consequences tend to get creepy men to change their behaviors posthaste.
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby orthogon » Tue Dec 12, 2017 9:47 am UTC

I'm finding this discussion very interesting and, on the whole, productive, so thanks everyone. There seems to be a broad agreement that the tricky bits are in the grey areas, and I was struck in this article by the allegation of "ogling". If ogling is defined as looking at women I find attractive for longer than some certain cutoff time ... I'd be lying if I said I never did that. On the other hand:

BBC News wrote:On NBC News on Monday, Ms Holvey said Mr Trump had ogled her and other competitors in 2006 at the Miss USA beauty pageant, which he owned.
The former Miss North Carolina, who was 20-years-old at the time, said "he lined all of us up" and was "just looking me over like I was just a piece of meat".


Is that not the whole point of a "beauty pageant"? That women line up to be viewed in a sexually commodified way to have their beauty judged? I'm not saying Trump isn't a misogynist arsehole, because he is, but the issue is surely the very existence, in the 21st century, of such events?
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby Ginger » Tue Dec 12, 2017 9:51 am UTC

I like beauty pageants. And they're not at all about the girls' sexiness. Attractiveness is only part of it you often need other accomplishments, goals when you become the Winner (Like the famous, "I want world peace!" line) and generally have to be a competent woman as well as beautiful. In a way they're being judged on their sexiness but they get judged on other things too. And I always saw beauty pageants as an affirmation of my beauty, of being treated like a princess, so I don't mind their existence in the current century.

And if Trump ogled Miss USA then he deserves to face consequences. I don't know about legal ones. Just a tongue-lashing from the offended woman would have satisfied me. But I honestly don't care if Trump gets in trouble for this one. He shouldn't be gaping and staring at women like pieces of meat.
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby orthogon » Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:03 am UTC

Right, this is fascinating. To be clear, you say "not at all about sexiness", then go on to talk about beauty, so presumably you're drawing a distinction between the two? I agree there is a distinction, but, for a straight cis male, there's a huge overlap. Certainly the two concepts are in no way orthogonal.

You say that Trump deserves consequences for ogling a contestant: what, for you, constitutes ogling as distinct from the normal process of looking at the women in a pageant in such a way as to judge their "beauty"? Again, at the extremes I totally agree there's a distinction, but surely there's a tricky line-drawing exercise in between?
xtifr wrote:... and orthogon merely sounds undecided.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby Ginger » Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:10 am UTC

Beauty being judged at a beauty pageant always seemed to me to be based more on classical ideas of how to be ladylike. Do you look feminine, do you look good in clothes that accentuate your feminine attributes, do you have goals and talents like singing or dancing or modeling or whatever? Then we have sexiness, which is how much you'd like to fuck/dominate/submit to that person. Sexually. So if Trump is ogling her sexiness he is no longer using classical definitions of being ladylike and having beauty. He is appraising victims that he wants to dominate and fuck.
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby morriswalters » Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:30 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:Maybe they're saying what's being said in this article: "I'm concerned because I've started to realize that the behavior I presumed was okay isn't -- that I might have been causing harm.
Yes. And no. What they are saying is that they are now uncertain and setting out how they are dealing with the uncertainty. And the quoted bit was the article laying out dangerous and counterproductive behavior that fear and uncertainty causes. In effect shutting women out. You can't have a harassment problem if you limit access to you by women. Can you see where that is counter productive? Particularly if you are someone who mentors subordinates?

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:58 pm UTC

Sableagle wrote:Re: eggshells

I still feel a bit foolish about the time I watched a woman hit the tarmac in front of me. I'd seen her sway and knew she was about to fall. I started to catch her. Then the idea that I'd be touching her without her consent and while in uniform if I did so and could get into a heap of trouble for it flashed into my mind and I jumped back out of the way and let her fall.

Crazy, eh?

Also I still recall the time a Warrant Officer told me someone who hadn't even been there had accused me of sexually harassing someone else because she'd have felt harassed if it had been her and that I was very lucky the person who'd called me an angel at the time had refused to make a complaint.

Refused. Seriously. I thought it was supposed to be about whether she felt harassed, not about whether someone else wanted her to feel harassed. See also: wolf-whistling. 'pparently not, in some places.

He went on to tell me I should probably just never talk to women at all.

Weird workplace, that was.

Oh, well. No big deal. It's not like we were supposed to be playing a vital role in protecting national securi..... oh, wait. Shit. Shit? Shit.

... so, yes, the eggshells thing is real.

That said, Deputy Fischer and Donald Drumpf clearly weren't ever feeling that way. Neither was Jimmy Savile.
So one case where you unilaterally decided your fear of harassment accusations outweighed helping someone and another case where someone has it out for you at work and that proves there's a general climate of eggshell walking?
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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Dec 12, 2017 1:11 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:What they are saying is that they are now uncertain and setting out how they are dealing with the uncertainty. And the quoted bit was the article laying out dangerous and counterproductive behavior that fear and uncertainty causes. In effect shutting women out. You can't have a harassment problem if you limit access to you by women. Can you see where that is counter productive? Particularly if you are someone who mentors subordinates?
Yes.

Did you honestly think I wasn't aware of any of this?
gmalivuk wrote:So one case where you unilaterally decided your fear of harassment accusations outweighed helping someone and another case where someone has it out for you at work and that proves there's a general climate of eggshell walking?
Also notice how even the second story still just amounts to that one time they didn't get wrongly accused.

Like, that whole incident sounds pretty sucky to have gone through -- but until I see some credible evidence of a widespread problem involving men getting falsely accused of sexual harassment, I'm going to keep presuming that the fear of false accusation is an irrational one.

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Re: Sexual Harrassment Epidemic

Postby morriswalters » Tue Dec 12, 2017 3:56 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:Yes.

Did you honestly think I wasn't aware of any of this?
Well, let me phrase it this way. I believe that you think you do. Until you write something like this.
The Great Hippo wrote:Like, that whole incident sounds pretty sucky to have gone through -- but until I see some credible evidence of a widespread problem involving men getting falsely accused of sexual harassment, I'm going to keep presuming that the fear of false accusation is an irrational one.
Of course it is irrational. But it doesn't say anything about the underlying fear. Do you for one moment believe that because the object of the fear is irrational, that the fear is any less real? My sister will jump up on a table at the sight of a mouse. She outweighs it by a factors of hundreds if not thousands, yet the fear is real to her.

The thing that you don't see when you look at someone like Matt Lauer is what he represents to a lot of men. Irregardless of the fact that he seems to be an asshole of somewhat epic proportions, is the amount of time he has invested in his career. For him this is a speed bump. He has sufficient wealth to ride this out. If he doesn't get sued out of his net worth, it's his ego that has taken the punch(deservedly so IMO). The average man has much more to lose in a real sense. And he fears losing it. Even if there is no rational chance of that happening. You address that through the use of empathy, you acknowledge the fear, while gently reminding him that the fear isn't real. Then the workplace catches up and gets some policies in place to deal with the changing mores.

Maybe you are saying something like this and I am unsuited to picking it out of your writing, if so my apologies.


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