Men must take responsibility for their bad behavior

first_imgAlso, if you make sexual advances on, or become involved sexually with, a minor, that is not a relationship.That is not dating. That is not even sex if it progresses to intimacy. That is a morally despicable sexual exploitation of a minor at least, and statutory rape at worst.Now that we have established that, we can move to the finer points.We have to focus on recognizing an imbalance of power during sexual dynamics so that men better understand the implicit “no” even when women don’t feel empowered to articulate a “no.”We have to focus on that space after attraction is sparked but before we are sure that it is mutual and reciprocal: The unrequited advance, the unwanted touch, the stolen kiss.We have to focus on the fact that jokes that objectify women are not funny.And we have to focus on the fact that society itself has incubated and nourished a dangerous idea that almost unbridled male aggression is not only a component of male sexuality, it is the most prized part of it. We say to boys, be aggressive. We say to our girls, be cautious. Boys will be boys and girls will be victims.We say, almost without saying it at all, that women are the guardians of virtue because an aroused man is simply an unthinking mass of hormones, raging and dangerous.We say that men in that condition are not really responsible for their actions, so it is up to women to do nothing to put them in that position.Dress more modestly. Don’t smile or laugh to the degree that it could be taken as flirtation. Avoid “this one” or “that one.” Don’t walk home alone. Don’t go out to drinks or dinner with the co-worker or classmate. Don’t meet in rooms with closed doors.This is the list of oppressions that women are read with religious rigor. These are the rules of the road. This is the outrage.Women are not responsible for men’s bad behavior. The idea that horny men can’t control themselves is a lie!Men have been so conditioned against emotional intelligence — that’s for women, we are told — that they are blithering idiots at reading the subtleties of allure or aversion. First, let’s state the obvious.I’m a big believer in sexual liberty. Consenting adults should feel free to express their attractions as they please without shame or guilt. Just play safe.But, there is no “sex” without consent. To believe that is a twisting of terminology.Rape is not sex; it’s rape. Unwanted touching is not sexy; it’s assault.Sexual advances in a professional environment, particularly from a position of power, are highly inappropriate and could be illegal.Also in business environments, rubbing your penis against people — known as frotteurism, in case you’re wondering — masturbating in front of them, or even showing your penis is wrong and humiliating and possibly illegal.In fact, doing these things in almost all environments is wrong and possibly illegal. Categories: Editorial, OpinionIt is impossible to say too often or loudly how important a moment this is, when many women feel brave and empowered enough to speak up about being sexually assaulted or harassed by powerful men.It feels like a watershed, like something is fundamentally shifting.But the greatest measure of fundamental change will be when everyday offenses by everyday people are also named and shamed, the trickle down of speaking up.center_img For most women, the perpetrator is not a Hollywood executive, or a sitting senator or an esteemed journalist. For most, there will be no news conferences if they come forward.There will be no celebrity attorney to sit at their sides and stroke their hands. There will be no morning news shows to praise their courage.For most, the decision to speak up will still feel fraught and without sufficient benefit to outweigh the possibility of negative repercussions.That is where the majority of this battle must be waged, among the ordinary, the powerless, the invisible. These women (and some men as well, it must always be noted) are the true Silent Majority of victims.Speaking up, and even pressing charges when the law allows, will send a powerful message and will definitely have a chilling effect on this kind of behavior. Loss of livelihood and liberty after bad behavior is a strong deterrent.But I believe that something far more fundamental has to take place. We have to re-examine our toxic, privileged, encroaching masculinity itself.And yes, that also means on some level re-imagining the rules of attraction. Guys become gamblers. They simply play the numbers.What nine women may find revolting the 10th may reward.They don’t even recognize what offense the nine may have experienced. They are blind to it.In the male mind, any peccadillo is excusable in the pursuit of compatibility.This kind of bulldozer, pelvis-first mentality is the foundation of the more aggressive, more intrusive behavior, and until we recognize that, we will count on the courts to correct something that our culture should correct.Charles M. Blow is a columnist with The New York Times.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censuslast_img read more

Trump repeats his cowardly old ways

first_imgCoward Trump strikes again. He was a coward during Vietnam. He would never run toward gunfire to save someone. He has no stomach to fire someone face to face except on reality TV — especially when they are smarter and have more integrity in their little toe than he has in his oversized body. Also, once again the NRA forced him to back down after big talk of not being afraid of them. These are facts, not fake news. Jeffrey DareLathamMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesAlbany County warns of COVID increase Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinionlast_img read more

Letters to the Editor for Monday, Dec. 16

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionNations like America take care of the poorWealthy, compassionate, civilized nations, do not deprive their citizens of food stamps.Rich LeonGlenville A big NO to county pay raise proposalRegarding the Dec. 6 Gazette editorial “Pay hike timed just right to pass,” greedy public servants just don’t get it. Greed is what brought a once mighty and powerful company to its knees at our neighbor GE. GE executives over the years have whittled away longtime workers’ health care and earned pensions, but cash out with millions in benefits and compensation.How can you ever justify an obscene 35% pay raise? Who gets that in the real world?  In August, I had to close my small business, the G&S B&B, the only legal B&B in the city and county. Why? Because our school’s property tax doubled. Why should I give more to a failed schools system?I’ll support your raise if all of you support: a 35% reduction of city property taxes and SUNY tuition as well. Sound crazy? Sure is. Just like your offer of a 35% pay raise. Let’s fix the problems that permeate the city first. Stop ripping off property owners and students.Just remember, last week New Yorkers were put on notice by the governor’s office that the state’s budget has ballooned from an initial $4.1 billion to an almost $7 billion deficit. Who’s gonna pick up the tab for that scary scenario?No to any pay raises. What part of ‘NO’ don’t you understand?Gerald PlanteStan ChristySchenectadyA week is plenty of time to clear walkOK, it’s been over a week since the snowstorm. My wife and I attended a family function at a State Street restaurant Sunday morning. We parked a few blocks above Proctors just past the Hampton Inn. We had to walk on the barely shoveled sidewalk in front of the Hampton Inn. I’m quite sure it is their responsibility to keep that part of the sidewalk clear. It was not only us, but several other people who were stuck in the middle as they shuffled along trying not to slip on this portion on the sidewalk. All the other sidewalks around were cleared down to the pavement.Whoever’s responsibility it is, shame on you for being so lazy that you can’t get out there a week later and clear your sidewalk.When we returned, we walked in the road up State Street where it was safe.Joseph KellySaratoga SpringsMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusGov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?last_img read more

£30m City deal for Japanese

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Out on the pull

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Tram leads race down Purley Way

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Abbey gets into the habit of looking for extra space

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Inner City

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Inner city

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High price of going green

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