This past weekend, this author wrote an Inquisitr opinion piece about #MeToo becoming a joke. The argument was that what started out as a legit movement has turned into a witch hunt used for personal gain and clickbait.
Aziz Ansari’s name was mentioned in the piece – after all, he was recently accused of sexual misconduct. What appeared to be a clickbait article on Babe worked in terms of generating clicks and publicity for the relatively unknown website. It’s important to stress the words “what appeared,” because there is possibly more to it. And isn’t it victim shaming, especially from a man, to call a young woman’s story clickbait?
The original thought was that the story was “revenge porn,” a term that many who support Aziz are using. Perhaps because of the way it was written, the whole story didn’t make the victim, who disguises herself with the name “Grace,” sympathetic. It all sounded like a bad sex date, which we have all experienced. Who hasn’t walked out of a partner’s apartment thinking, “This is disgusting – Please get me to the closest shower!”
The article on the relatively unknown website made it easy to defend Aziz Ansari. But then came some of Aziz’s defenders, who actually made this author (and many others) show a little sympathy towards his accuser.
The Atlantic’s Caitlin Flanagan is a great writer, even if you don’t agree with everything she says. But she took an incredibly irresponsible (and anti-feminist) route by accusing Grace (and other “white women”) who complain about misconduct and racism.
“I thought it would take a little longer for the hit squad of privileged young white women to open fire on brown-skinned men. I had assumed that on the basis of intersectionality and all that, they’d stay laser focused on college-educated white men for another few months.”
Flanagan made other good points in her article. But she probably thought she would win the emotions of her readers if she brought race into the mix. This particular race baiting is disgusting, especially because we don’t know Grace’s actual race. It also goes against the fact that sexual assault has no color; its perpetrators and victims come from every race and religion. Should white women fear speaking out now if they’re perpetrator has a certain skin color?
Bari Weiss, another awesome writer, also got it wrong with her piece in the New York Times titled “Aziz Ansari is Guilty. Of Not Being a Mind Reader.” The title and its supporting paragraphs are cringeworthy at best. If we at least believe Grace’s account of her story (and Aziz Ansari didn’t deny it in his response), she gave more than enough hints about her displeasure with the situation, and Ansari was obviously thinking with the wrong head. The article not only shames the victim but tries to defend Ansari’s ridiculous sense of sexual entitlement.
The biggest shame with Grace’s critics is that they are other women who not only buy into the bogus image of Ansari being a “woke feminist,” but they also can’t convince readers why we should support Ansari. Instead, it’s all about shaming the alleged victim. It’s actually pretty easy to defend Ansari. It only takes a couple of sentences. Let’s give it a try.
“Aziz Ansari may have a sense of sexual entitlement, but he is not a criminal. There is nothing to the Babe story that puts Aziz in the same category as Kevin Spacey or Harvey Weinstein. While Ansari has shown himself to be a complete hypocrite, comparing his actions to true sexual assault perpetrators is a slap in the face to the #MeToo movement.”
Now that was easy, wasn’t it? It’s too bad that Aziz Ansari’s supporters took a different route that actually pushed people into supporting Grace more than Aziz himself.