Every day new public figures are outed for sexual harassment. Harassment rooted in an abuse of power. We see this abuse reflected in a society which objectifies women. We see this abuse institutionalized in limited access for women to positions of influence and power.
Have we reached a tipping point? A willingness by enough people to say ‘no more’?
tipping points (plural noun)
- the point at which a series of small changes or incidents becomes significant enough to cause a larger, more important change
Are we at a point where men stand with women, in calling out those who exploit? Will we men be willing to explore and wrestle with the cultural bias’ we’ve acquired and profit from? Will we name and let go of attitudes and behaviors that contribute to the wider culture that objectifies and oppresses?
Will men join forces with women in demanding equal treatment under the law and hold those with power accountable? From school campus’, to military bases, to halls of Congress, to the White House, to business, to religion, to households… have we reached a tipping point where we demand more of ourselves as a society?
Imagine a tipping point that affirms our best intentions as a nation. Imagine women and men, girls and boys, affirming our inherent equality, that every person as Thomas Jefferson put it, ‘is endowed by their Creator with the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.’
True, Jefferson didn’t fully grasp the implications of his words. His world view didn’t include people of color and women in his listing of who was worthy.
Yet, Jefferson’s words continues to offer a vision we aspire to. A vision that says everyone, female and male, native-born and immigrant, rich and poor, gay and straight, young and old are ‘endowed by their Creator’ with inherent worth and equal rights.
This is not simply good public policy. It’s also good theology.
This is who we strive to be, when we are at our best. The floodgate has opened with stories of harassment, oppression, abuse.
Such stories reflect a decision by enough women and enough men to say ‘we will not be silent, we will not be complacent or complicit’ towards those factors that have created and reflect an oppressive culture.
Have we reached a tipping point? The answer rests with women and men like you and me. Imagine what our society can be as we live into our core values.