Wednesday, June 8, 2011

An Open Letter To The World's Men

Dear Men:

I believe in you. I believe the same things about you that I believe about people of all other genders: that you have access to your fundamental goodness, that you have the divine spark living inside of you, that you are capable of conquering your baser instincts and demonstrating great love and achieving great things.

A few of you seem to be doing your best to make me stop believing.

Some men, when they are in a position of power and influence, use their power to rape or sexually abuse others. Some men in a position of power and influence use their power to cheat on their spouses, almost invariably while propounding a “family values” platform or capitalizing on the alleged strength of their (monogamous, heterosexual) relationships. Some men in a position of power and influence tweet inappropriate pictures of themselves.

But I will not let the few affect my beliefs about the many. I will not succumb to the temptation to draw harmful generalizations about all men. Or about all heterosexual cis men. Or even about all white heterosexual able-bodied cis men in positions of power and influence.

I believe in individuals. I believe that the brain is mightier than the penis. I believe that the conscience can be stronger than earthly power, if we only let it.

I believe in you, and I won't let a few – or even a lot of – horndog politicians destroy that belief.

But, you know, feel free to vindicate my belief in you sometime.

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