From politics to the media to video games, misogyny in our society is customary and seemingly normal in the eyes of most people. It’s incredibly frustrating to hear a blatantly sexist male trying to justify his words and/or behaviors, but it’s oftentimes even more maddening –– and just plain weird –– to hear a female align herself or speak in defense of male supremacy.
I recently came across the website Total Frat Move, which is an online community for undergrads to talk about boobs and “fat chicks” and post pictures of themselves shooting guns and hanging out with Newt Gingrich. Their Twitter page offers tweets like, “Blinkers, condoms, and restraint are things I don’t use. #TFM” and “Referring to yourself as ‘her Christopher Columbus’ after taking her virginity. #TFM.” In regard to the latter, I’m not sure if any of the ignorant dudes responsible for writing these tweets are aware that Mr. Columbus was more of a rapist/murderer type than explorer.
I was obviously angered and grossed out by the content on this website and its Facebook and Twitter pages, but it also just kind of seemed like another typical online breeding ground for sexist guys. What I found to be far more upsetting was its accompanying sister page called Total Sorority Move, which talks about the importance of tanning, “using daddy’s credit card” and “judging girls based on what fraternity shirt they are wearing.” Almost half of the website is ad space for the online retailer Rowdy Gentlemen with a massive caption that reads “HIS LOVE IS FOR SALE.”
I understand that sites like these are meant to be somewhat satirical and taken lightly, but they become an issue when they perpetuate problematic aspects of our society, such as outdated gender roles that can be directly tied to sexism and even rape culture. And since men are usually not the ones negatively affected by things of this nature, I suppose it makes sense that they might overlook the terrible implications of sites and conversations such as these. However, I can’t possibly understand how young women voluntarily promote and participate in this behavior. It’s especially disturbing alongside the countless stories in the media of college campuses being plagued by instances of sexual assault and slut-shaming.
Another horrifying instance of this behavior was after the Chris Brown/Rihanna fiasco, when Buzzfeed posted an article titled “25 Extremely Upsetting Reactions To Chris Brown At The Grammys” that consisted of a bunch of girls tweeting that they would let Chris Brown beat them up. One added “I don’t know why Rihanna complained.”
Why would a woman want to encourage sexist and violent behavior? And why is feeling accepted and desired by such awful members of the male community so important to so many young women? This is infuriating because of how much it goes against the ideals of feminism (and common sense as well), but it’s also unbelievably sad to think that so many women are either ignorant to their own oppression or they simply don’t care enough to stop it. We can only hope that continually addressing our culture’s problems with sexism will eventually result in a shift in the mainstream perspectives of men and women alike.
Written by Nicole Woszczyna