The conviction of Harvey Weinstein for a series of sexual assaults has been seen as a triumph for the #MeToo movement and vindication for the women who participated in it.
The #MeToo movement was started by the victims of Weinstein quickly morphing into a women’s movement to include anyone who had been raped or sexually assaulted. It soon began to attract millions of followers, all sharing online the terrible things they’d experienced at the hands of men. But no sooner had the movement begun than it was co-opted by Misandrists who made it not just about one gross man’s crimes, but about the treatment of all women. The hashtag became the third-wave feminists favourite Twitter topic, whilst women were encouraged to ’speak up’ about the terrible abuse they must have surely suffered.
The trouble with the #MeToo hashtag is that it does not differentiate between the sorts of crimes people were using it for. This gave rise to such trivial stories as the woman who claimed a man staring at her for a few seconds longer than normal on a London Tube was a ‘violation’, and the student reporting a wolf-whistle from a passing car which was given the same weight as a serious sexual assault, they both got hash-tagged ‘Me Too’. This was now almost a badge of honour for many who paraded their victimhood all over social media. What #MeToo really did was trivialise the victims of rape and molestation by talking about them in the same breath as someone looking at them 'in a funny way’.
Third-wave Feminists rubbed their hands with glee as this ‘confirmed’ what despicable creatures all men are. Other things related to the hatred of men were then given more credence and fed into the Me Too Movement. The myth of a ‘Rape Culture’ on University campuses gained momentum even though there’s absolutely no evidence of this. Yes, Rapes happen, but the notion that there is some type of 'culture' is suggestive of something constructed, accepted and commonplace. It is not. The idea that women are oppressed by some huge male conspiracy called ‘The Patriarchy’ also went from a theory of gender studies academics to being touted as fact by the mainstream media. Likewise, 'Toxic Masculinity' implied that all men were evil because they were, well.. men. Even the Dystopian TV series ’The Handmaid's Tale’ was talked about like it was a hard-hitting documentary series, and not a work of second-rate fiction.
Weinstein is clearly a despicable man whose reign of terror has finally been brought to an end and he will, most probably, live out the rest of his days in prison. But his crimes are not indicative of all men, or indeed any other man. To imply that all men are Harvey Weinstein is a ridiculous slur on an entire Gender that really needs to be seen for what it is.
Vision News 2020
Harvey Weinstein photo by Georges Biard, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=31432844