Thread coming. This piece by @petridishes seems on the surface quite reasonable. Basic argument: The very first man who Gaetz showed naked photos of "conquests" to on the House floor should have stopped the whole business. 1/n…
2/n But this fails to understand the very insidious nature of sexual harassment at work -- which this was. When Gaetz showed other men these photos at work, without them every wanting it, he was harassing those men with his sexuality and sexual needs (to brag).
3/n The reason those men didn't "do the right thing" - call him out on it that very second, dress him down, report him - is the same reason women being harassed don't do all that. It's disorienting. It's exhausting. It's risky. It's just all gross and you want to walk away.
4/n I'm not saying those men should not have ultimately reported him and stood up to him. But if we're going to understand sexual harassment at work by people like Gaetz, then we need to get that we ALL have trouble confronting the serious asshats. And they know it.
5/n If we are going to understand why women don't call out these guys immediately and loudly, then we need to understand why the men don't either. Let's understand the way Gaetz was harassing the men he worked with and understand harassment is disorienting and costly to name.
6/n @petridishes makes these points to some extent but when she names "The person who was presented with this behavior and had a choice of how to respond," that's what is often said about women who didn't call out their harassers early and often. And that troubles me.
7/n All that is to say I think it is a good piece by @petridishes and you should read it but I think we should not underestimate how difficult it is also for men to call out men harassers. Gaetz was using unconsenting men for his own pleasure, too, by forcing them to look.

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More from @AliceDreger

13 Mar
I remember one time I asked a colleague to walk me back to my hotel at a conference and he expressed skepticism that the city we were in was unsafe. So, as we walked I narrated for him how I saw the walk back, as a woman. Pointed out the creepy stuff. The dark alleys. The stares.
By the time we got to the door of my hotel's lobby, he said he had never seen the world that way. I think he was genuinely stunned at the difference. So I explained I also don't really sleep with any depth in hotels. I never feel like it's safe enough. Every trip wears me out.
I explained to him that one reason I don't spend as many days at conferences as he does is all of that. I think it never occurred to him the way the cultural gender disparities manifest professionally, even in fields with pretty good gender equity.
Read 8 tweets
9 Mar
Everyone deserves due process. Title IX at many universities has been broken a very long time. I had a horrific experience in the early 2000s when a colleague was falsely accused. Have seen much ridiculousness since. This is NOT a partisan issue. Justice matters for everybody.
The title IX investigator in that case made her decision before hearing any evidence: he was guilty. When I was called in to testify, I told her all the evidence the accusation was false & done for purposes of the accuser keeping a job that was due to expire.
I got so frustrated with the title IX investigator, I started crying. I was afraid my colleague would unjustly lose his whole life. She told me my tears were proof I knew he was really guilty. It was a miracle I didn't punch her.
Read 5 tweets
9 Mar
I was very careful (mostly double-masked) while doing necessary elder care but turns out was exposed to someone who now has covid. So I get to self-isolate for 14 days. The mate & I are figuring out how to divide the house. This is going to suck.
We did this successfully when I had to flu and neither the mate nor kid got the bad flu I had 2 years ago. So we know it's doable. And maybe I won't get sick. He's vaccinated. The kid is away at school. Could be a lot worse. And maybe I won't get sick.
Just remembering that in Feb. 2020 I warned people to be ready to divide houses to quarantine the sick/exposed from the healthy/unexposed. We are lucky to space to do this. Weather getting warmer helps, too, for using the porches. And I have my writing shack out back.
Read 6 tweets
26 Feb
I spent a while last night on the phone with someone who is pretty well known and being cancelled in a way that will destroy his life. I hadn't heard of him before he reached out to me with a note that made me worry he was suicidal. 1/n
I asked him to tell me his story. I know the importance of getting people who are traumatized to turn their chaos into a narrative as it helps with healing. (Thanks, Art Frank, "The Wounded Storyteller," and @JonathanMAdler for that insight.) 2/n
Then I pushed him with questions designed to make him cry (to crack), but we both ended up weeping, as often happens for me in these conversations. To hear someone who is realizing their identity is being destroyed -- it is brutal. 3/n
Read 9 tweets
24 Feb
Gynecologist: What are you here for?
Me: I've reached the age of polyps and my internist thinks I have one on my cervix.
Gyn: The age of polyps?
Me: Two in my colon, one on my cervix, the occasional skin tag. Apparently being 54 turns one into a mushroom farm.
Told the mate this when I got home. He said, "You forgot your toes."

Anyway, the good news is, no polyp. My internist who is lovely and young didn't know what she was looking at. I said to the gyn, "Never send an internist in to do a gynecologist's job."
Read 6 tweets
8 Dec 20
Writing an obituary for one of my dearest neighbors. I feel so grateful every time a friend asks me if I would do the obituary -- for a historian like me, doing an obituary feels like an incredible privilege of listening and composing. And it gives me a path of grief.
But man, it's hard to write while you're crying and crying.
Read 4 tweets

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