Hannah Gadsby is tired of “good men” defining what constitutes sexual assault. In fact, the proudly gay comedian is tired of “good men” distinguishing themselves from “bad men” in a seemingly arbitrary and context-driven manner.
Men’s consistent behavior of degrading, objectifying, and assaulting women — especially in Hollywood — has been under the microscope for the past year since numerous sexual assault accusations emerged against former media mogul Harvey Weinstein.
Last night, at the The Hollywood Reporter’s 2018 Women in Entertainment Gala, the stand-up comic called out “good men” — who she calls “the Jimmys” — that distinguish themselves from the Harvey Weinstein’s of the world. The Jimmys often insist that other men should just stop being creepy.
“As if that’s the problem,” Gadsby said. “Men are not creepy. Do you know what’s creepy? Spiders, because we don’t know how they move. Rejecting the humanity of a woman is not creepiness; it is misogyny.”
Gadsby clarified that she still believes men can take a stand and help fight against misogyny, however, these seemingly “good men” are seldom consistent in their stances when it comes to their interactions with women.
“We need to talk about how men will draw a different line for every different occasion,” she said. Especially when their behavior is revealed to be anything but “good,” these men seem to always have a well-rehearsed line, ready to go. “They have a line for the locker room; a line for when their wives, mothers, daughters, and sisters are watching; another line for when they’re drunk and fratting; another line for nondisclosure; a line for friends; and a line for foes.”
The comedian continued, “You know why we need to talk about this line between good men and bad men? Because it’s only good men who get to draw that line. And guess what? All men believe they are good.”
This allows for good men do bad things and still believe that they’re good, because they haven’t crossed the line, since they, themselves, moved it.
“Women should be in control of that line, no question.”
The 40-year-old comedian then asked the audience to substitute men with white, cisgender, straight, and so on, noting that these groups shouldn’t move the line when talking about “good white people” or any other privileged group.
Watch the entire speech below.