Amber Skye Forbes

Writing Words With the Tips of My Toes

Misogyny and the ‘Old Boys’ Club’ Mentality

I normally don’t post about politics or whatever you want to consider this, but when I see people even remotely supporting the ‘old boys club’ mentality, especially in the military, I can’t help but to have an opinion. You can find the article I’m referring to here.

Am I even allowed to have an opinion on this anyway because I’m not in the military, will never be in the military, and don’t want to be in the military? Or the marines? Or the whatever? I simply don’t have the mental strength to put up with what they put up with. I get tired of people telling me that if I want to tour Europe, I should join the military. I’d rather be homeless, honestly. I know what being in the military would do to me. In any case…

The gist of the article is that the Marine Corps wants to make certain sites off-limits due to the harassing nature of the pages toward females. I want to first off state that I don’t think pages should be off-limits to them period. You might as well make the internet off-limits to them because there is potential for harassment everywhere. I’m not saying it’s right because it really isn’t.

I don’t find degradation funny anymore. I used to because it was just a joke, but when the degradation jokes are constantly against women and they’re not even cleverly done or done tongue-in-cheek, you start to realize there is still a culture of misogyny present that thinks it’s okay because ‘we really don’t mean it.’ I don’t exactly see the same being done toward men, save the rare cases from hardcore, proudly-proclaimed misandrists–which I don’t find okay at all. But when it’s the norm to make disparaging jokes about women or to say it’s a shame Angelina Jolie removed her breasts because she had a ‘nice pair of tits’ and not because she had a high chance of breast cancer, then there is still a problem with misogyny, and whether or not our culture means to be misogynistic does not matter. I want to scream at ‘get back to the kitchen’ jokes. How the heck do people even think that’s funny, even as a joke? It’s so tiring as a joke. Not only that, but it’s completely demeaning to women. I see it in gaming culture too.

I’m also not sure how I feel about the woman mentioned in this article writing a letter about what she found online and how not only does it treat women like crap but it misrepresents the Marines. I feel like the internet should be kept separate from her job because there are problems enough of those in professional vocations posting party picks, getting caught in those party picks, and getting fired. I don’t feel like our jobs should define us as people, that our persons should be separate from our jobs. Even the military. We’re all human, after all.

At the same time, the internet IS misrepresenting the Marines and the military or whatever. In spite of all the good our military has done, the internet isn’t exactly shedding a favorable light upon the culture and what it’s about. As an outsider, this is my idea of military culture just from the internet alone: constant boozing, drugs, mistreatment of females, and partying. I can’t imagine that’s all there is to the culture, but the internet would have you think otherwise.

The ‘old boys’ club’ mentality is not okay. It is not okay to shrug off male behavior as ‘boys will be boys.’ This is the same concept that supports victim blaming, sexual harassment, and all sorts of problems women still deal with. It’s the same concept that puts the responsibility on women, when women shouldn’t have to live their lives in fear of being harassed or raped. Men are more likely to be murdered than women are to be raped, but we don’t teach boys how to prevent murder, yet we teach women how to prevent rape. Just what? Both sexes can be raped and murdered.

It’s troubling when it’s over the internet and when it’s just captions taken out of context. How do you deal with that? Do you shrug it off as ‘they don’t mean it. It’s just a joke to them’? Or do you actually do something about it so there is no misrepresentation going on? But then that’s policing the internet. But then it’s also still sexual harassment, especially if a woman voices her concern and no one is reasonable about sating it. She could get off that site, but then misogyny is still prevalent, whether or not she’s present.

It’s a double-edged sword.

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2 comments on “Misogyny and the ‘Old Boys’ Club’ Mentality

  1. erickeys
    June 5, 2013

    I agree that harassment vcab happen anywhere and that cutting off access to certain pages oe sites will only slow folks down. I guess the only real solution is to do things to foster a change in cultural attitudes.

  2. runningtoherdreams
    June 5, 2013

    Great post! I had a taste of the “old boys club” in law enforcement training. It’s down right sad and infuriating it’s 2013 and it still goes on!!

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