“Sexual harassment is considered a form of sexual discrimination”, by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), “and refers to behavior that includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct”. Sexual harrassment is a behavior distinguished by the making of unwelcomed and inappropriate sexual remarks or physical advances. Harassers or victims can be one of any gender. Sexual harassment can includes trasgressions of any level. Levels can range from mild to sexual abuse or assault. This type of behavior can occur anywhere from the workplace to the streets. Not only would harassment on the street be sexual harassment but this would also be Street Harassment. Thousands of women know all to well the inferior feeling they would get when they get unwanted/unwelcomed attention despite appearing not to be interested. Sexual harassment, seemingly a societal issue, is a problem because many women are affected by it on a daily because society is still coming to terms with the fact that it is a problem and a serious problem at that. Sexual harassment needs to be addressed and treated as a serious problem because it causes many problems in the lives of people that tend to not even know what it is, it results in women not feeling safe or comfortable around men. Sexual harassment is in fact a serious problem, but there are solutions to fix this societal issue.
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In sexual harrassment situations, why are women almost always on the receiving end of sexual harassment, and men on the giving end? In the past years, multiple women have complained about getting sexually harassed whether it be at work or not. Studies show that 81% of women have experienced sexual harassment whether it be sexual touching, looking, behavior, etc. An article by Sandra Ellen called ‘Sexual Harassment in Workplace’ says, “A series of scandals in 2017 revealed the widespread presence of powerful men in the entertainment and news media industries who habitually used their authority to engage in sexual misconduct”. There are many different reasons for why it is mostly men who commits the act and why women are almost always on the receiving end. There are many smaller problems that contribute to the bigger problem. If we can fix the reasons why this problem exists, we can then fix the problem.
One of those reasons is toxic masculinity. Toxic masculinity generates sex-based harassment, particularly actions carried out by men–a conduct that does not concern a specific interest in mind, but a tactic of signifying a man’s superiotity, and of stigmatizing the injured party. The term is directed towards very real problems of male violence and sexism. Toxic masculinity is a problem because. Harassment maintains the masculinity of workplace to confirm its prominence in the pecking order of masculine or feminine. This evidence shows that the claim is true because it proves that women are mostly affected by sexual harassment becuase men tend to use their power, sometimes without their knowledge as a male in a male dominated and sexist society. An article by Elliot Johnson called ‘Ways to Kill Toxic Masculinity’ is to stop saying things like “Boys will be boys”. He says, “This phrase says that we expect certain behaviors from boys and will allow them to continue. It says it’s in the male nature to be violent, promiscuous, sexist, etc., so it’s not worth doing anything about it”. Toxic masculinity is one reason why sexual harassment tends to be on the receiving end for women.
One place sexual harassment occurs at is in the workplace. In a study conducted by Gratiela Sion, she states in her article, THE PSYCHODYNAMICS OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT AND GENDERED INEQUALITY IN THE WORKPLACE. AN EMPIRICAL INVESTIGATION, that many women experience behaviors such as, “staring or leering, making suggestive comments, trying to discuss sex, displaying offensive images, repeatedly asking out, trying to start a sexual relationship, and/or unwanted touching” while in a place of work. Many women who came out about their sexual harassment experience are mocked, accused of their own crime, victimized, ignored, etc. Some women are told not tell their stories by their own bosses because they dont want a bad reputation. Some companies would rather protect the accuses rather than the accusers for various reasons one being they do not think the accuses did anything wrong or illegal.
Ariana Pickett wrote an article called ‘What is Sexual Harrassment’ and in it states the quote,“Sexualharassment is bullying or coercion of a sexual nature and the unwelcome or inappropriate promise of rewards in exchange for sexual favors. Sexual harassment includes a range of actions from mild transgressions to sexual abuse or assault”. One of the first lawful grouping of the conception of sexual harassment was dependable with sex discrimination and therefore banned behavior under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Catharine MacKinnon: Sexual Harassment of Working Women). The legal system alone is not an reliable concept for reducing or preventing sexual harassment. Managment to legal justifications is mandatory but not enough to encourage the change needed to confront sexual harassment. An excessive juridical approach to the problem of sexual harassment is likely to misunderstand the true characteristic and extent of the problem. Sexual harassment law and policy evolution has focused hardly on the sexualized and pressing forms of sexual harassment, not on the gender harassment that research has discovered as much more frequent and at times proportionally damaging. Its true that in career fields like science, engineering and medicine that women tend to face sexual harassment but it is also true that not only does harrassment in these careers not count as illegal discrimination under the current law but women can end up loosing their carrers in these fields if the come out about their harssment experiences. This information proves that despite the laws that were passed to stop sexual harassment or at least decreasse its numbers, it still occurs one main reason being that the laws is not being inforced. This is why it was a problem and is and will continue to be a problem until the laws are being used to punish the criminal and protect the victim. It seems that sexual harassment is being taken more and more as a joke as time pass by society. It also seems as if society has become desensitized to the horrible crime seemingly because it happens everyday.
Sexual harassment can have long term affects on victums. Rainn did an article about sexual harassment and in it states, “The likelihood that a person suffers suicidal or depressive thoughts increases after sexual violence. 94% of women who are raped experience symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) during the two weeks following the rape: 13% of women who are raped attempt suicide: approximately 70% of rape or sexual assault victims experience moderate to severe distress, a larger percentage than for any other violent crime”. This evidence shows that the claim is true because it shows the scarily high percentages of women who suffered after the crime of sexual harassment was commited. People who experience sexually assault personnel life and relationships tend to be affected. These people turn to unhealthy actions like using drugs to deal with their trauma.
1 out of every 6 women in the United States has been the victium of attempted or complete rape. When women come out about their stories they are ridiculed, amongst other things, and blamed for their own assault despite being the victim. I dont know if this is because people tend to not take rape seriously, people dont take women serioously or if this ties into the whole point of this paper which is women are almost always on the recieeving end of sexual harrassment because of how society views them.
Not only does the seemingly societal norm involving females affect women but girls also. An article by Rainn says, “Ages 12-34 are the highest risk years for rape and sexual assault”. Society and schools teach girls at a young age to not wear certain things that would catch male attention. To not act or talk a certain way. To not give ‘flirty’ or ‘suggestive’ looks. They teach girls if something happens to them, it is their fault. Doing this completely dismiss the fact that a serious crime was committed by the other party and that he should be held accountable and punished accordingly. There are laws for females saying they can’t do certain things but what about males. Society makes men think that doing whatever they want to whoever they want wherever they want is ok. So of course they are going to put it to work since it works in their favour, whether done unconsciously or not. This evidence shows that the claim is true because from being a girl to being a woman, females all face these same threats as a female in society.
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Another reason why sexual harrassment continues to be a problem because some people do not want to call it what it is. How can we solve the problem if we dont even want acknowledge it as such
In conclusion, females are affected by sexual harassment more than men because of how society views them. To prevent sexual harassment, corporations can create diverse, inclusive, and respectful environments. As a society, we can start holding people and businesses accountable for inappropriate behavior. Individuals can educate themselves on this topic to be able to know what sexual harassment is and to recognize it. We can address the justice systems failing to meaningfully and rightfully enforce Title VII’s prohibition on sex discrimination. Sexual harassment is a problem, but it is a problem that can be solved. Sexual harassment, seemingly a societal issue, is a problem because many women are affected by on a daily because society is still coming to terms with the fact that it is a problem and a serious problem at that. Sexual harassemt needs to be addressed and treated as a serious problem because it causes many problems in the lives of people that tend to not even know what it is, it results in women not feeling safe or comfortable around men. Sexual harassment is in fact a serious problem, but there are solutions to fix this societal issue.
- Live, Saturday Night, director. Sexual Harassment. YouTube, YouTube, 9 Dec. 2017, www.youtube.com/watch?v=iAAJYpg9xWE.
- “Sexual Harassment.” Opposing Viewpoints Online Collection, Gale, 2018. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/JDJFRI128474268/OVIC?u=dayt30401&sid=OVIC&xid=7207f73b. Accessed 8 Apr. 2019.
- Sion, Gratiela. “THE PSYCHODYNAMICS OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT AND GENDERED INEQUALITY IN THE WORKPLACE. AN EMPIRICAL INVESTIGATION.” Contemporary Readings in Law and Social Justice, vol. 10, no. 2, 2018, p. 92+. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/A567426037/OVIC?u=dayt30401&sid=OVIC&xid=b7af99f2. Accessed 8 Apr. 2019.
- “Street Harassment.” Opposing Viewpoints Online Collection, Gale, 2017. Opposing Viewpoints in Context, http://link.galegroup.com/apps/doc/XZJDJI492029993/OVIC?u=dayt30401&sid=OVIC&xid=4dad7a21. Accessed 8 Apr. 2019.
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