Sexual Harassment Training

In wake of all the recent sexual harassment crap going on in the media, my place of employment made it a point to conduct sexual harassment training (again.  I think we had already gone through it once before in the past couple years, but whatever).  Nothing like a dry, boring dose of the obvious to open your Monday morning.

There were a few things that pissed me off though.

First and foremost, apparently the “elevator stare” is sexual harassment (you, know… eyeing someone down from head-to-toe and back up again).  Further, what you wear is also not relevant when it comes to making someone feel uncomfortable.

I completely disagree.

If you’re dumb enough to go in public and not cover up, I’m probably going to give you the elevator stare, male or female and whether you’re attractive or not.  This of course may be a good or bad thing.  Have you been to Walmart… ever?  Some shit you just can’t unsee.  And it sure as hell aint sexual harassment.  It’s “Holy shit!  You’re in public like this on purpose?”

Flamboyantly gay guy dressed as a female… yep I’m gonna look.  Overweight person bent over and the thong’s far more visible than it should be… yep, I’m gonna look and thank the dear Lord you’re wearing something.  Dumbass wearing your pants around your knees… I’m gonna look and then tell you you’re a dumbass.  Beautiful woman wearing skin tight jeans or a short skirt with a low-cut shirt… yep, I’m that creepy old guy that’s gonna look to admire and enjoy something beautiful if only for a moment.  You didn’t put on that outfit because you didn’t want people to look, because if you didn’t want people to look, you’d COVER IT UP!  That big ass zit on your face… you bet I’m gonna look at that too, which is why women cake on the makeup to COVER IT UP!  For all you dads with teenagers out there… wardrobe malfunction prevention 101 is cover that shit up.  This QT commercial sums it up.

Modesty isn’t a new concept.  Beauty isn’t defined by how little you put on or how much skin you show.  Everyone can be beautiful and modest (I’m not talking inner-beauty… see your shrink for that shit).  And although modesty isn’t 100% foolproof because an asshole’s gonna do what an asshole does, it’s certainly a way to not egg it on or ask for it.  No alarm in a home or car is going to 100% stop a thief… it’s a deterrent.  Call modesty “asshole deterrence” if you will.  I know putting on that bra is a pain in the ass and throwing on a tank top and pajama pants is easier to hop in the car and take the kids to school (my wife’s totally guilty on this one), but take some pride in yourself each day and spend a few minutes to look presentable when you walk out the door.

What is modesty?  Your pants are around your waist.  Your skirt is knee-length so when you sit down I can’t see up it.  Your blouse or shirt isn’t so low that when you sit down at your computer and I’m standing in front of or behind you I can’t see down your shirt and see your bra (or more).  Nothing is sheer, including your shoulders because visible bra straps, the outline of lace, a colored bra under a white shirt that outlines your breasts, visible panty-lines (learn to wear the right panties with the right outfit… I sport the boxers, boxer-briefs and tighty-whities in my wardrobe for every occasion.  Each serve a purpose.  And going without underwear at all is a definite no-no.), short-shorts, ripped pants, fishnet stockings, etc.; all scream LOOK AT ME!!!

I guess next up is the all the celebrity harassment going on.  I’ll admit I was a little sad when Matt Lauer was fired; the one I can’t stand is Savannah Guthrie (omg that frown smile is so damn annoying it’s completely ruined the Macy’s parade for me).  And yeah, some of it’s seriously screwed up.  There are seriously screwed up people everywhere, but this lumping of all men into the “pervert” category is complete bullshit.  Have I crossed the line at work or church before?  Sure.  Not intentionally I don’t think.  I’m human, male and sexual.  I act like an idiot around just about any girl I find attractive… my wife points it out all too often and I catch endless shit for it – even from my kids, it’s funny.  I’m also not dumb enough to act on anything.  I love my wife and family and completely unwilling to go through the consequences of what I know will happen if I go down that path.  And as far as I know, my family and friends all understand that.  But apparently “this isn’t about me”, as Debra Messing pointed out to Matt Damon, one of the good guys trying make sense of all this.  And that’s the problem… the good guys are getting lumped in with the assholes who are in a position to exploit women.  And yes, nobody disagrees that there should be consequences for the assholes.

So lets go a step further, what about all the women (maybe men?) using #metoo when they used sex to get roles and/or advance their career.  It happens in EVERY profession.  It’s never happened to me and probably will never happen to me because I wouldn’t have the courage to act on it, but don’t get me wrong, I’m all for sexual bartering.  Use everything you’ve got to go as far as you want in life.  But don’t complain about it later when you received something in exchange for it.  Can you imagine what the porn industry will do when porn stars start claiming #metoo?  A world without porn for people to satisfy themselves in private and both genders too scared to talk to women with cameras everywhere.  George Orwell had it right all along.  From holding it in so long, men would explode all over the place!  Maybe that’s the idea.

And I think therein lies the problem, is that there’s no way to distinguish the sexual favors from the genuine assholes.  And because everyone knows sexual favors are frowned upon in this country (don’t get me started on this country’s perversion of sex), assholes and sexual favors are going to destroy EVERYBODY once the nitpicking begins.  “Oh, she said #metoo even though she fucked him and got that role?  Damn right I’m saying #metoo”  And now the non-celebrity employee that works with me gets the notion “I wore a sheer, low-cut blouse and that guy was looking down my shirt when I was typing at my desk.  #metoo!  Sexual harassment!”.

I don’t know where this whole fad is headed, nevertheless I’m hoping I can get my wife to wear something sheer tonight.

Rick

Professional firefighter since 2008 and web developer since 1999. Husband, father, musician, writer, Scouter... I'm the swiss-army geek in your back pocket.

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