Saturday, March 10, 2007

Why I'm Wearing Red on Tuesday

A few days ago, The Washington Post ran a story about the website This site allows users to log on anonymously and post - well - whatever the heck they want. This sort of site is not new. Many message boards and social networking sites allow this sort of thing. One hears rather regularly about kids in middle and high school using the internet to bully, embarrass, and harrass each other. On autoadmit, young Yale Law School students (among others) have posted such miserable filth and garbage concerning at least one of their female colleagues that she (a student at Yale Law School who has already had her work published) did not receive any job offers, though she interviewed with 16 potential employers. I'm sure that most of the posts on autoadmit are of a purely informative and helpful nature, but there are those despicable people who use the anonymity that the internet provides to indulge in whatever degrading, racist, sexist thoughts pass through their stunted minds.
So, in response, the Yale Law Women are out in force. One of their own has and continues to be subjected to these degrading attacks. Her name was not kept anonymous. She has been ridiculed by name and attacked by cowards who would not dare make such comments to her face. The Yale Law Women are fighting to hold the website responsible. They are fighting to expose the immoral and inhuman persons who perpetuate such oppression and hatred. They are fighting to hold the feet of employers to the fire should they use vicious unsubstatiated rumor as a hiring criteria. They are asking people to wear red on Tuesday, March 13 in protest and in solidarity.
I happen to be in love with one of the Yale Law Women. So I am privileged to see what happens when women who know what they are doing get fired up and angry. It is amazing to me to see man's inhumanity toward women get taken on and called out for what it is - HATE.
There is no way I am going to not join the courageous women at Yale who are willing to put themselves at risk of similar anonymous internet reprisals to show their outrage. Dangit! I am outraged! Women still, in the 21st century, struggle for equal protection, equal opportunity, and equal treatment with men. Garbage like this shows that men in positions of power resent and hate women for the progress they have made and seek to use whatever vile methods available to keep women underfoot.
These small-minded young men whose level of maturity approximates that of an adolescent beagle are hiding behind the first ammendment and spreading their ignorance across the internet. What's worse, they somehow got into Yale. That means that they have a higher chance of being in positions of leadership and influence later in life. The anonymity of the internet gives them complete freedom to say whatever they want and never be held responsible for it. If they (and the men who run autoadmit) get their way their anonymity will be protected, and someday one of these cretins will be a mayor, a congressman, a Senator, or President of the United States.
So I'll be wearing red in Tuesday. I'm going to go to my job in a town far away from this controversy with my red shirt on. I'm thinking of wearing a button: "Ask me why I'm wearing red!" so I get a chance to tell the 250 people I will talk to that day a little of what I wrote here. I want people - young men especially - to know that this kind of violation of any woman's dignity and humanity can not and will not be tolerated.

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