Nice guy? No, the classic sex pest
While Khalid Wasi applauded Andrew Cuomo’s decision to resign as Governor of New York, I suspect many women around the state’s capital and all across New York were dancing in the streets in joyous response.
We’re tired of all the lame, gross excuses that we hear about men’s behaviour and how it’s a different time and that they didn’t get the memo that putting their hands on a woman or making suggestive remarks is a new social no-no. It’s not and, frankly, it has never been acceptable.
Did you notice that the women who finally complained were his subordinates? These women were not of equal stature, women who had the political or professional clout to tell this entitled excuse for a real man to back off. This is classic sexual harassment and he is a classic sex pest.
Nope, he probably won’t rape you, but your discomfort every day with his shoulder massages, knee grabs and so-called friendly hugs while he grinds himself into you for his own pleasure is the stuff of Ladies Room legends.
I love these guys. They usually employ the tried and true “Hey, I’m a nice guy, right?“ defence and were only trying to be friendly and reassuring to their young, newly minted subordinates. It’s a lie. They purposely create an environment, as the disgraced governor did, that ensures that these women are so paralysed by second-guessing themselves that they don’t complain.
It all seems so innocent, so misunderstood and yet every move, every comment is calculated to keep control and power over these women. Praise, love, then harsh and soul-destroying admonishments follow — and then right back into the fold are the typical come-to-daddy techniques that these lowlife creeps use from their “I’m a nice guy” playbook.
I don’t care, as Mr Wasi suggested, that men may have to curb their natural impulses — whatever that means — in order to safely navigate life in the treacherous world of women in the workforce. But here’s what I am certain of, and that is: had Mr Cuomo been in the private sector — say, in finance, the bastion of boys’ club behaviour, he would have been fired. His subordinates would have had a proper human resources department and the bum would have been out.
Want to hear something funny? You would think that a man who succeeded David Paterson, who had to serve out the disgraced Eliot Spitzer’s term after he got caught in a prostitution ring, would have been the last man on earth to harass women in the Governor’s office.
When will these guys learn? Probably never. This is why at the first whiff of inappropriate behaviour, it is important for everyone in the workplace, our governments, military, religious organisations and our education institutions to act immediately.
ELAINE C. MURRAY