Envisioning a Different Kind of #MeToo

Written by Cole Sterr

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Some background information before you read:


Feminism: Noun \ fem-i-nism A belief in the social, political, and economic equality of the sexes.


#MeToo Movement: movement founded by Tarana Burke and hashtag spread on social media to help demonstrate the magnitude of sexual assault and harassment, particularly amongst womyn in the workplace.


(To see why I’m using the term ‘womyn’ instead of ‘women’ read this blog by AE Tiffany Nguyen).


Imagine this: a world in which the hashtag ‘#MeToo’ was popularized not as a means to demonstrate the magnitude of sexual assault and harassment among womyn, but used as a way to express how many men identify as a feminist in an effort to show their solidarity for half of our world’s population.


All men should be feminists. And not just the homosexual men. All men. I don’t know about all you men out there, but I was raised with the mentality that womyn are people, too! (mind blowing, right?)


And here’s why:  I was raised by a strong mother and widow who has four equally strong sisters and an older sister who had an insatiable dedication to always get her way. My squad in high school consisted of six fierce womyn and myself. The majority of my friends now are either womyn or gay dudes. I don’t know about you, but I need feminism because the majority of my life has been surrounded by womyn. The same womyn whom I came out to, the same womyn who call me to complain about boys, the same womyn I graduated high school with, the same womyn who work full-time jobs they’re not passionate about in order to support their families, the same womyn who told me to treat people with respect, the same womyn who ask me to walk them home late at night in fear of being another “me too” victim, and the same womyn who have indeed said “me too” to being sexually assaulted and/or harassed.


Obviously, my life wouldn’t be the same without the womyn who have enriched my life so far. That’s why it baffles me when men can’t seem to grasp the idea of being a feminist, yet still being a man. In my opinion, and pretty much in the opinion of half the entire planet, considering yourself a feminist as a man is one of the most masculine, balls-worthy things about a man. It’s also just a characteristic of being a decent human being, too. However, because a lot of men really can’t grasp this mind-blowing idea, let me paint a picture for them:


  • My boyfriend told me that in his Sports in a Diverse Society class, he was the only man out of about 15 that raised his hand when the professor asked who in his class identified as a feminist.

  • 17,700,000 womyn have reported a sexual assault since 1998.

  • Womyn make up only 24.8% of state legislatures nationwide.

  • Only 4.2% of the Fortune 500 companies were run by womyn in 2016. (That’s 21 out of the 500 companies)

  • There are only 4 women out of 15 members on the International Olympics Committee Executive Board.

  • Womyn make up 19.6% of Congress. That’s only 105 female voices out of 535.

  • More Americans voted for Hillary Clinton, a womyn, in the 2016 presidential election than any other losing presidential candidate in U.S. history.


As I’ve been surrounded by womyn my whole life, it really confuses me to see such a lack of representation of the kick-ass womyn I grew up with. It also scares me to know that so many womyn have said “me too” and probably will say “me too” in the future. I often wonder how different things could be if more men identified as a feminist. If more men said “Yes, me too, I am a feminist.”


So, let’s take advantage of the power of the #MeToo Movement.


How lovely would it be if the only kind of “me too” we were saying was when a chain of men and womyn identified as feminists?


“I am a feminist.”


[Man] “Me too.”