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Nicole Bedera @NBedera
, 10 tweets, 2 min read Read on Twitter
I'm a sociologist who studies sexual violence. I'm here to weigh in on "Baby It's Cold Outside."
First, let me just say that I find absolutely nothing compelling about that random English teacher's analysis of the song as "progressive for its time" or whatever. Sexual coercion and women's sexual desire can (and do) coexist in the same society.
Sexual violence WAS happening in the era the song first became popular. It isn't something feminists invented for the #MeToo movement. No one can definitively prove that the song was coercion free.
Personally, I'm in the camp of "If this thing upsets someone I care about, it's not that hard to find a new favorite holiday song. Have you check out Leslie Odom Jr.'s Christmas album?" If you want my honest advice, you should be in that camp too.
But if you HAVE to keep listening to "Baby It's Cold Outside" anyway. I have some thoughts on the (more) ethical way to do it.
Get a version that's a gender reversal. Same song, same lyrics, but it doesn't normalize men's sexual coercion of women and it might get you thinking. She & Him has a very trendy hipster version.
Pull the song off your holiday party playlist. It might not bother you, but might upset some of your guests, especially if they have experienced sexual coercion themselves. If you like them enough to invite them to your party, like them enough to want them to have a good time.
And on that note, headphones are a thing. If you know a song you like is upsetting or potentially triggering to other people, jam out to it in a way that no one else has to hear.
We all have our guilty pleasures. Be mindful of how you drag people into yours. And that includes antagonistic social media posts about how the snowflakes on your feed should "get over it" when it comes to this song.
I promise your family will find something else to fight about over dinner for the annual holiday get together. Don't be the one to start the fight over something as personal and hurtful as sexual violence. You have no idea who in your family is a victim.
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