Time’s Up

By Mickey Friedman
January 27, 2018

I grew up in a world ruled by men. In such a world, however enlightened the exceptional men I met along the way, we were shaped/misshaped by the larger reality. I learned about sex from other stupid boy/men on the street or in locker rooms, none of whom had a clue about women, their bodies, our bodies or the deep connection between emotion and sexuality.

When it came to the classroom or the street there was a kind of semi-enforced segregation. We boys were almost forced by social pressure to abdicate learning to the girls. They did their homework, raised their hands. We hoped we’d never get called on.

I had an inner life rich enough to survive my crazed and poor childhood. There were many times I was present but not there, my daydreaming noticeable enough to create enough suspicion and concern that others might question my commitment to male-dom. Which I did my best to counter by playing as much touch football, stickball and basketball as I could, and by nodding my head or laughing at the stupid things that were said about girls.

I attended DeWitt Clinton, an all-boys high school of thousands, a school that most resembled a maximum-security prison, discipline often enforced by the former Marines who masqueraded as gym teachers. I can still vividly remember the softball that whizzed by my head because I whispered something to the guy next to me. Or the many times the cane seats were ripped from the elevated subway train, bulbs unscrewed and thrown from the windows at the girls of Walton H.S., a chilling example of how the boy/men confused getting the girls’ attention with attempted homicide.

I rejoiced at City College when I once again saw young women walking and talking and learning in the place that was now mine as well.

Forgive the long introduction to my acknowledgment that I appreciate why Time’s Up.

Many years have come and gone and I’d like to think I’ve learned something along the way. I have tried in my art and my politics to transcend my limitations but I am a white heterosexual man. And this morning as I write, CNN tells us “a record-breaking 22 women are serving in The Senate.” 22 of 100. While American women make up 50.8% of the population.

The Institute for Women’s Policy Research tells us: “Women are almost half of the workforce. They are the sole or co-breadwinner in half of American families with children. They receive more college and graduate degrees than men. Yet, on average, women continue to earn considerably less than men. In 2015, female full-time, year-round workers made only 80 cents for every dollar earned by men, a gender wage gap of 20 percent … In middle-skill occupations, workers in jobs mainly done by women earn only 66 percent of workers in jobs mainly done by men.”

According to RAINN, the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network, “On average, there are 321,500 victims (age 12 or older) of rape and sexual assault each year in the United States … As of 1998, an estimated 17.7 million American women had been victims of attempted or completed rape. Young women are especially at risk. 82% of all juvenile victims are female. 90% of adult rape victims are female. Females ages 16-19 are 4 times more likely than the general population to be victims of rape, attempted rape, or sexual assault. Women ages 18-24 who are college students are 3 times more likely than women in general to experience sexual violence. Females of the same age who are not enrolled in college are 4 times more likely.”

Hence #MeToo and Time’s Up: “We write on behalf of [over 1,000] women who work in film, television and theater. A little more than two months ago, courageous individuals revealed the dark truth of ongoing sexual harassment and assault by powerful people in the entertainment industry.

“The struggle for women to break in, to rise up the ranks and to simply be heard and acknowledged in male-dominated workplaces must end; time’s up on this impenetrable monopoly,”

“To every woman employed in agriculture who has had to fend off unwanted sexual advances from her boss, every housekeeper who has tried to escape an assaultive guest, every janitor trapped nightly in a building with a predatory supervisor, every waitress grabbed by a customer and expected to take it with a smile, every garment and factory worker forced to trade sexual acts for more shifts, every domestic worker or home health aide forcibly touched by a client, every immigrant woman silenced by the threat of her undocumented status being reported in retaliation for speaking up and to women in every industry who are subjected to indignities and offensive behavior that they are expected to tolerate in order to make a living: We stand with you. We support you.”

Time’s Up.

________________________________________________________________

“Time’s Up” was published first in January 18, 2018 issue of The Berkshire Record.

Some additional information:
“the percentage of women-founded venture-backed companies has plateaued at approximately 17 percent since 2012.”
https://techcrunch.com/2017/04/19/in-2017-only-17-of-startups-have-a-female-founder/

“The gender pay gap doesn’t close – even at the very, very top”
http://money.cnn.com/2017/12/13/news/companies/women-executive-pay/index.html
Julia Carpenter December 13, 2017
“Of the 15 highest paid executives in Corporate America last year, two were women. The highest paid man made nearly $244 million … The top-paid woman? She made less than $41 million. The wage gap between men and women, which runs throughout the business world, is widest at the top.”

“Pay Equity & Discrimination”
Women are almost half of the workforce. They are the sole or co-breadwinner in half of American families with children. They receive more college and graduate degrees than men. Yet, on average, women continue to earn considerably less than men. In 2015, female full-time, year-round workers made only 80 cents for every dollar earned by men, a gender wage gap of 20 percent.
Women, on average, earn less than men in nearly every single occupation for which there is sufficient earnings data for both men and women to calculate an earnings ratio. In middle-skill occupations, workers in jobs mainly done by women earn only 66 percent of workers in jobs mainly done by men. IWPR’s report on sex and race discrimination in the workplace shows that outright discrimination in pay, hiring, or promotions continues to be a significant feature of working life.
https://iwpr.org/issue/employment-education-economic-change/pay-equity-discrimination/

https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/US/SEX255216 – viewtop

On average, there are 321,500 victims (age 12 or older) of rape and sexual assault each year in the United States.
Ages 12-34 are the highest risk years for rape and sexual assault.
Those age 65 and older are 92% less likely than 12-24 year olds to be a victim of rape or sexual assault, and 83% less likely than 25-49 year olds.
Millions of women in the United States have experienced rape.
As of 1998, an estimated 17.7 million American women had been victims of attempted or completed rape. 
Young women are especially at risk.
82% of all juvenile victims are female. 90% of adult rape victims are female.
Females ages 16-19 are 4 times more likely than the general population to be victims of rape, attempted rape, or sexual assault.
Women ages 18-24 who are college students are 3 times more likely than women in general to experience sexual violence. Females of the same age who are not enrolled in college are 4 times more likely.

https://www.rainn.org/statistics/victims-sexual-violence
RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) is the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization. RAINN created and operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline (800.656.HOPE, online.rainn.org y rainn.org/es) in partnership with more than 1,000 local sexual assault service providers across the country and operates the DoD Safe Helpline for the Department of Defense. RAINN also carries out programs to prevent sexual violence, help survivors, and ensure that perpetrators are brought to justice.

“Powerful Hollywood Women Unveil Anti-Harassment Action Plan”
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/01/movies/times-up-hollywood-women-sexual-harassment.html?

https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/4339359/Womenhollywood.pdf
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/07/opinion/sunday/amber-tamblyn-golden-globes-metoo.html?_r=1
Amber Tamblyn: Redefining the Red Carpet

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2 comments for “Time’s Up

  1. isaac
    January 27, 2018 at 1:59 pm

    i attended de witt clinton
    i loved it and have fond memories
    i am a white heterosexual male
    i have zero feelings ov guilt
    everything i have achieved i worked for and earned

    • john hadden
      January 29, 2018 at 3:08 pm

      If you think the world is a mess, it’s because of us white hetero males, who’ve been in power for thousands of years. Not that anyone else might not have screwed it up too, but we can’t know that. In any case, it’s time for us to hand it over, and then step down and lend a hand.

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