Peak liberal hypocrisy is idolizing men like Chuck Berry while vilifying feminists who put women first

We all know women who fear male violence are just hysterical, right? I mean, what have men ever done to hurt us? Oh. Right

When women express concerns about their spaces, whether those spaces are locker rooms, domestic violence shelters, or even, yes, bathrooms, they are not only accused of being irrational, but are smeared as bigots.

Globally and historically, men have been the biggest threat to women. This is the reason we have spaces specifically designated for females. We are not crazy or paranoid. We are not “sexist.” (Sexism against men does not exist any more than racism against white people does — oppression operates on a systemic level, meaning that terms like “sexism” and “racism” exist to highlight institutionalized discrimination, not individual experiences of hurt or what feels like injustice.) Rather, we understand reality and have tried to create boundaries that allow us protection from those most likely to harm us.

Despite statistics that show men beat, rape, stalk, harass, exploit, and kill women at aggressive rates, policies and legislation are being enacted throughout the Western world that allow males access to women’s spaces so long as they don’t identify as male. To even acknowledge that differences exist between trans-identified males and women means ostracization, threats to livelihood, blacklisting, endless misogynist slurs, boycotts, censorship, and justifications of violence.

On Saturday, Chuck Berry died. And while it is true that he was a legendary musician, it is also true that 59 women filed a class-action lawsuit against Berry for filming them in the washroom and change room at his Missouri restaurant. (He settled out of court, paying out over $1.2 million.) Berry was allegedly sexually abusive, had a massive porn collection, and was charged with child abuse. In 1962, he was convicted of transporting a 14-year-old Indigenous girl across state lines in order to sexually exploit her.

Nonetheless, Berry has enjoyed a long, celebrated career. When his death was reported yesterday, numerous Good Liberals posted glowing accounts of Berry’s legacy.

While I don’t necessarily expect anyone to avoid appreciating music or art that meant a great deal to them personally, as well as to the culture at large, I do think it’s interesting to note the glaring hypocrisy these celebrations present. While a man who imposes on the private spaces of women and girls, doesn’t respect their boundaries, and exploits their vulnerabilities is not only permitted a successful career, but is glorified, a woman who argues that females should have the right to spaces free from men is no-platformed, reprimanded, and smeared. Even to acknowledge there are differences between males who identify as transwomen and females is, according to the liberal masses, an unforgivable crime.

So, the question is: what’s worse? A woman who understands that male violence against women is systemic and that requesting our own spaces, away from men, is therefore legitimate? Or, actual males who abuse women and who literally intrude on the very spaces we are fighting to maintain today, in order to exploit women and girls?

Ironically, both Obama and Springsteen, who posted fawning tributes to Berry in light of his death, have advocated to allow males to have access to women’s and girls’ spaces, so long as they identify as female, but regardless of their sexed bodies and male socialization.

Berry is far from the only man who has preyed on women and girls. Indeed, violating women’s boundaries is very much part of male socialization and what many call “rape culture.” The way boys learn that pressuring girls into sex is a rite of passage demonstrates this, as does the presentation of stalkeresque behaviour as “romantic.”

For men who clearly don’t take male violence seriously to demand women give up their rights, as an oppressed class of people, and to accommodate those who embody a threat to their safety is deeply hypocritical. For liberals to demand women who understand that male socialization and bodies are material realities that matter be fired or simply sit down and shut up is equally so.

Women should not have to explain or prove, over and over again, that their fear of male violence is legitimate. The evidence is right here for all to see. The reality is that liberals simply don’t care.

Meghan Murphy
Meghan Murphy

Founder & Editor

Meghan Murphy is a freelance writer and journalist. She has been podcasting and writing about feminism since 2010 and has published work in numerous national and international publications, including New Statesman, Vice, Al Jazeera, The Globe and Mail, I-D, Truthdig, and more. Meghan completed a Masters degree in the department of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University in 2012 and lives in Vancouver, B.C. with her dog.

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