“It’s Not Rape” Is Not Good Enough. Asshole.

All rights @ ian dooley. Tulsa. Edits mine.

Don’t ask me why I’m even still talking to my ex, let alone arguing with him about gender politics. I don’t know what kind of catharsis I still think is possible for me, or him, through his conversion —as if our toxic conversations will medievally transform him into a decent modern man who doesn’t think that expressing emotions is “super gay”. Is there any alchemy for that?

He is a 1980s sexist who thinks he’s a good guy because he’s not an 1880s rapist. He believes in equality, mostly, but he is most vocal on the “it’s not that bad” topics.

The one disparity he triumphantly champions in gender discrimination is that men are underpaid in porn.

“Men do all the work but women get all the money,” he wasn’t exactly sneering. But he seemed to think he had a winning argument that would somehow invalidate all other institutionalized misogyny and sexism and this — the final frontier of gender inequality — was proof that he agreed injustice abounded.

People. I thought I was going to marry this horrible piece of trash. We had it narrowed down to one of two churches. One of the two churches was the cathedral where his parents were married. I thought I had found a good man.

I uprooted my whole life to be with this petty sneering mama’s boy who somehow could not see the victimization in any woman except for his own immaculate codependent childlike mother. Women who are not his mother are theoretical, abstract, conceptual — and always overreacting, particularly entitled American women.

To say it more succinctly, he is part of the problem. He chooses not to see that every woman is someone’s daughter. That many women are someone’s mother. But that their inherent value DOES NOT depend on their relationship to others.

As Ice-T recently quipped on SVU: the dinosaurs won’t die out because they have no natural predators.

I was crushed to learn that my 34-year-old foreign ex-boyfriend was as bad as any good ol’ boy from the US. He is basically an Ok, Boomer. And he’s gotta go. They all do.

One night I was talking to his best friend about the casting couch. He squirmed a little and shrugged.

“But,” he started, with acquiescence, or inevitability, or something, “it’s not like it’s rape though …”

Yes. My friend. It can always be worse. Murder is worse than mugging. Hurricanes are worse than home invasion. Rape can always be more violent than economic coercion. But are we okay with manipulating people’s dreams? Their career prospects just because we can? Just because some asshole wants to get his dick wet? Is that where we are as a society?

Let me ask you this. Whatever field you work in, whatever industry you’re trying to excel in, how many dicks have you had to suck? Did you remember to cup the balls? Did you swallow? What? It’s not like it’s rape. You’re the one that’s choosing to pursue a career in that field. Sooo …

Why in the name of everything that’s holy should any prospective employee ever have to perform sex acts to advance their career?

The fact that we collectively shrug and accept a casting couch mentality in multiple industries is exactly the problem with entrenched misogyny — this is sexual and economic exploitation and it is fucking unconscionable.

Most dudes want to get their dicks wet. That’s fine. That’s perfectly human. And when everyone consents it’s damn sexy. But exploiting an economic or professional power differential is — bare minimum — unethical.

If you work at an autobody shop or grocery store or medical clinic and want better hours or a promotion are you willing to blow your supervisor? Is that something the rest of us should shrug about from the sidelines? “Well, it’s not like it’s rape though …” You are choosing to try to excel in your field sooo …

What is horrifyingly implicit in this nice man’s perspective is that sexual exploitation is part of the game. That this is just the way it is.

This should not, cannot be the norm.

We’re all willing to hustle. We’re willing to pull the long hours and late nights. But blowing some superior? Or worse? Fuck that noise.

Your portfolio should speak for itself.

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