Don’t Listen to Me


Anthony Pantalone, Editor

My opinion doesn’t matter. And it should not matter.

This is not some form of self-deprecation. And it isn’t me begging for compliments.

If I am scrolling on TikTok, I typically end up face-to-face with the video of a 20-something white man with a beanie and a mustache who regurgitates either some of the blandest or most rancid opinions about movies. How these men present themselves is essentially all the same. Probably mass produced in a factory somewhere. They ooze pretentiousness. State their opinions as matter-of-fact. They feel their perspective is the most important in the world. That they need to drown out anyone else who could be speaking in the vicinity. 

And that’s the thing with a lot of men and “filmbros” in these spaces. They always attempt to drown out the voices of women and present themselves and their opinions as the end-all-be-all. I’m sorry, buddy. Please do not lecture me on how great that Quentin Tarantino movie is. I do not care, and nothing would ever make me want to hear your opinion on it.

What I am trying to say is that you need to discount male voices.

I am not an exception to the rule. There is no exception to the rule. No matter how much work a man can do, they will always in some way contribute to or reap the benefits of patriarchal systems of power.

I do not want to be viewed as an exception to the rule. I want you to know that it is all men. There is no exception. The men that state that it is not all men should be held suspicious. The same even can be said for the men that can admit that it is all men.

I have known men that see their female friends have left a room and think that it is okay to make sexist jokes that would have otherwise not been tolerated in the presence of those women. They are part of the problem.

I have known men that try to hide their actions behind feminist theory and posturing themselves as progressives. These men should understand that whatever façade they put up will never be genuine until they can speak to and atone for how their words and actions have promoted misogyny. At the first sign of trouble, these men will often retreat back into the systems of power they pretend to oppose staunchly. Know that they too are still part of the problem.

I have known men that fashion themselves as misandrists and then use this title as a defense for their objectification of women. These men state they hate all men and think this position means they could never possibly be perceived as a misogynist. Meanwhile, their constant treatment of women as objects of sexual desire reinforces the fact that they are either lying or should especially hate themselves. Know that they are very much part of the problem.

And if you are a man reading this and feel rage thinking that I could be talking about you, look inward. Examine why you feel these attributes might apply to you. If you have to wonder whether one of these previous broad archetypes are describing you, then understand that you are probably part of the problem. And know that I am not an exception either. It is all men. All men have upheld these oppressive misogynistic systems in at least one way or another throughout their lives.

Read this. But take whatever I say with a grain of salt. What I have to say does not and should not matter. You can listen to me if you want. But really you should listen to a woman instead.

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