Build a Culture of Accountability Instead
Hear me out. It's time for men to help other men shift from guarded, defensiveness into full participation in a powerful culture of accountability. Victimhood and denial only serve to keep us weak and lonely.
Accountability on the other hand, calls forth our strengths around engagement, problem-solving, & exploration, all while we exercise empathy, listening, and ally-ship.
Men, when you get called out for sexism, bullying, homophobia, racism, etc., EVEN IF you're just being included in the group of perpetrators b/c you're a man, take a breath. Stay curious, present, patient, and caring. Know that you have power. Use it to listen.
Talk to other, trusted men already working with women, POC, LGBTQi folks, etc. Ask them for insight. (Don't take advice from men who are in victim mode or who blame women. Those men have traded their strong heart for false power & a "brotherhood" of lies & complaints.)
Build a culture of accountability inside and around yourself. Acknowledge your personal responsibility for your past actions as well as shared responsibility for actions done by other men. When we take ownership we can act and heal ourselves and others.
Acknowledge the grief and fear that comes up in you and others. Grief about the past... fear of the future. Don't deny or suppress those emotions in yourself. Find the strength to hold space for others as they feel fully. Grief frees us up to move forward.
Know that we are so much stronger on the other side of listening, learning, and grieving than we are stuck in denial and defense. Know that we are incredibly more powerful in open ally-ship than in sealed silos. Don't "go your own way!" We need you here!
Charles Matheus grew up in an old mining town in Arizona. He managed to graduate from an Ivy League University and knows that you won't hold that against him.