What I’ve seen in terms of what you describe is, in my experience sadly true, even amongst older men like myself, this behaviour has little or nothing to do with age, rather it seems to involve the lack of a developed and functioning empathetic response, which makes me wonder how these throwbacks treat their mothers and sisters.
Being a father and having a daughter tends to change one’s tolerance of this sort of bullshit. Mind you, that’s not likely to be true in all cases and there are, grotesquely, exceptions; the human equation is more than a little fuzzy.
Perhaps I was this way well before I became a father and I was able to think about how my actions and behaviour affected others around me and what experiences that they might be responding from. The simple recognition that everyone you meet has encountered and overcome unknowable struggles on a constant basis, which should inform the interactions with those around you by bringing you to a place where you treat everyone you encounter with respect, dignity and interest.
It’s simple. All women deserve to be treated with respect and not objectified for some purile idiot’s selfish pleasures, period. Sadder still are the number of men who don’t step up and challenge this crap when they see it happening. The hopeful part is making this and related issues part of the public discourse and educating our sons in a positive way. Change happens, and in this case change will be for the better.
Well written and important. Let’s keep the discussion open and alive.