Hidden Crimes Against Women

Good men have an obligation to be aware of all the unquantifiable ways women are taxed, hurt, and disrupted.

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There is no simple metric to measure the difference in how something like a late-night walk through a city is felt for women versus men. Photo by Matteo Modica on Unsplash

It is easier to be a man than to be a woman. This need not be the case forever, but it is the case now, and has been for too long. It is an uncontroversial statement of verifiable fact that any men with a shred of moral character and a bit of sense in his head will readily acknowledge.

Some of these ways can be measured, such as wage gaps and underrepresentation in government and executive positions. The statistics on sexual assault are also stark and damning. Good men must recognize the reality of the situation as made evident by the facts.

To be truly good men, though, we need to do a lot more than just recognize those matter-of-statistical-fact ways that women suffer. We need to learn about, validate, and work to end the ways women are disrupted that cannot be easily counted and plotted.

A good man needs to try to see through the eyes of a woman to become aware, even partially, of the complexity and ubiquity of the trouble women face. We need to be humble to do this. We especially need to build and maintain close relationships with women. If we’re able to establish real trust, then we might just have the privilege of being able to ask them how their lives are and get honest answers. This is the duty of every man who wants to be counted among the good.

It must begin with relating to the women around us in healthy ways. We can’t just sit back in our armchairs and imagine what life is like for women; we just don’t have the information, we lack point-of-view and can’t get it just by thinking hard. After we’ve put the work in to building healthy relationships, we have to ask women what their lives are like and trust their answers.

I have a long way to go in my attempt to understand what things are really like for women, but here’s a non-exhaustive list of the uncounted ways women are unfairly made to suffer:

There are many other uncounted taxes on the lives of women. Men can never really understand, but we have a moral obligation to try to be aware of these destructive forces if we’re to have any hope of making things better for women. Good enough is never good enough for men of real moral character. We should always be ready to listen to women who honor us by sharing their experiences, and to incorporate what we learn into a deeper understanding that lets us better see through the eyes of the other.

Essayist, former scientist, trans woman. Striving for actionable methods of peaceful revolution — relationships, community, mutual aid, subsistence, science.

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