For many individuals, 2016 has a turbulent year for humanity. Death in the Syrian conflict, Iraq, Yemen, and other parts of the world. We lost icons like David Bowie, Carrie Fisher, and Prince. In addition, we saw mass shootings in Dallas and the Orlando night club shootings. Overall 2016 was a bad dream. However, The Representation Project, a group whose mission is to, “inspire individuals and communities to challenge and overcome limiting stereotypes so that everyone, regardless of gender, race, class, age, sexual orientation, or circumstance, can fulfill their human potential”, blames 2016 on a male dominated society. The group made a video called “How Toxic Masculinity Dominated 2016”. You can view the video below. In conjunction with the release, Jennifer Siebel Newsom & The Representation Project Team released the following statement:
This has been a tumultuous year. Whether because of the high-profile campus sexual assault cases, mass shootings, or the harmful language used by the President-elect, these are all the result of a hyper-masculine culture that values traits such as dominance, aggression, and control over empathy, care, and compassion. The result is a culture of toxic masculinity that permeates our society. Whether it’s bullying others, demeaning or degrading women, or placing value on money and power above all else, these ideas and expectations are dangerous and need to be addressed at the dinner table, in our local communities, and on the national stage.
That’s why this week, we’re premiering, “How Toxic Masculinity Dominated 2016,” to help spark a national conversation about toxic norms and how we as individuals and a society can do better. Please share this video on Twitter or Facebook, as a pledge to hold individuals, communities, and media accountable in addressing toxic masculinity. Together, let’s challenge and overcome this limiting and harmful culture in the New Year.
Blaming 2016’s most tragic events on a “masculine dominated” culture is irresponsible and not logical. Instead of accepting the fact that evil people do evil things, the Representation Project seeks to connect good men to these evil deeds. The group says their objective is to “overcome and limit stereotypes“, but they continue to perpetuate the myth of the “male ogre”. As if we all behave like cavemen and no women is safe from being clubbed over the head and dragged to some cave. Instead of judging each individual on a case by case bases, the Representation Project stereotype the entire male culture based on the actions of a few individuals.
It’s true that many of the individuals who committed heinous acts were of the male species, but sex is the only criteria that Jennifer Siebel Newsom & the Representation Project Team examined when they made their video. For example, did they consider other connections like race, religion, similar medications, or other connections of these evil doers? The Federal Criminal Justice System tend to give men 63% longer sentences than women, women are significantly likely to avoid charges, convictions, and are twice as likely to avoid a prison sentence. Does this mean there is a grand conspiracy by women to avoid justice? Of course not, we continue to join each woman we encounter on her individual character and merit; as oppose to judging all by the actions of a few.