The War Against Misogyny

Photo Via Under the Creative Commons License

Picture this: you’re a female who just went to the mall with friends, and found this really cute top that you’ve been dying to wear and show off at school. The top makes you feel confident and overall pretty! You’re at school and things are going well, until you’re alone and walking alone to your next class. There’s a group of boys behind you calling out some not so appropriate things. You begin to feel self-conscious and don’t know how to respond. 

Many people might think that scenarios like that don’t occur often and can only happen in shows, books, or movies. Misogyny happens every day and studies by the United Nations Development Program prove that. They found that nine in 10 people, not only men and including women, are biased against women. 

Misogyny could be found anywhere, and there is never a “safe zone.” At WMS, students and staff have their own opinions on how the school handles it. WMS principal, Dr. Crowe said, “I think in general society, misogyny is an evil and danger of life…I have seen attitudes towards women that are misogynistic, I think it’s disgusting. I believe that at WMS we do a good job protecting all students from all that.” 

 7th-grade student at WMS, Talia Crismale, said that she doesn’t think it’s a topic talked about often and that “it’s a controversial topic that people don’t like to bring up.”  

We Googled “Male Things” and “Female things” and the results were stereotypical. For girls; perfume, heels, purses, and nail polish; For boys, there was a football, cologne, and suitcases. The things that came up are now classified as “girly” and for the boys it’s considered more “masculine.” 

These Google results have shown that today, it’s suggested that there aren’t any masculine females or feminine males and since these are the stereotypical top searches, younger generations will go on to believe that this is the expectation to what they should like depending on their gender. 

Sports could be viewed as stereotypically for “boys only” and for the girls who want to play a sport, there is such a thing as “Sports for girls.” Google searches reveal stereotypical responses such as volleyball, soccer, gymnastics, and cheer leading for girls, however, the sports that come up in a search for boys are basketball, football, karate, and soccer. The sports for girls are shown  to be more “gentle” and the sports for boys are conveyed as  “tougher.” 

Speaking of sports, the ongoing argument on modified push-ups is getting heated. In some schools, it’s said that during warm-ups, the P.E teachers give female students the option to do modified push ups while the males must do the ‘regular’ push-ups.  WMS P.E teacher, Mr. Thompson explained that “Modified push-ups are given as an option to everyone, not only females. We have sports that include ALL genders.”

Misogyny is a difficult topic to talk about, it can make someone uncomfortable to recall that type of memory. In schools, it could be common, however, girls who face misogyny don’t like bringing it up because they feel as if their opinions are irrelevant.

Misogyny doesn’t come from nowhere, however, it’s usually taught at home or on TV.  WMS 7th grade math teacher, Mr. Lee, said, “…We can try to teach students at school what’s right and wrong; however, families or whoever they live with at home should be contributing to that as well.” 

Health teacher and P.E teacher, Mrs. Traschetti, brought up that she thinks that she has seen it on tv and that in general shows “portray women not as strong as men.” 

Mr. Lee explained that in The Walking Dead Carol Peletier faces misogyny when she is in an abusive relationship with her husband, so she evacuated that relationship.

 “I cannot stomach reality TV because of the amount of misogyny on there,” Mr. Lee added. Reality TV is all about drama and although it’s called reality TV, most of it is scripted. Sometimes the script can involve loads of misogyny and just hatred towards women, this is because this is what people enjoy watching, gossip and drama. 

Misogyny can be spotted anywhere, though many women tend to stay quiet because of how uncomfortable the situation is, it’s important to be heard. School guidance counselors or any trusted adult could help whatever situation you’re in with no judgment. Next time you recognize misogyny, do something to help instead of being a bystander.