There is a clear reason why most men have remained quiet with the burgeoning topic of sexual assault and harassment in the media and Matt Damon has just found out why. In an interview on ABC News, he asked a question which echoed through social media and landed with a thud: “You know, there’s a difference between, you know, patting someone on the butt and rape or child molestation, right?” Damon queried. “Both of those behaviors need to be confronted and eradicated without question, but they shouldn’t be conflated, right?”
He got the answer to his, seeming, rhetorical question in a most literal and entertaining manner.
It’s truly astonishing that at this moment in time, Matt Damon has managed to make himself intensely unlikable WITHOUT being accused of sexually assaulting anyone.
— Kate Harding (@KateHarding) December 19, 2017
Kate Harding, writer of Asking for It: The Alarming Rise of Rape Culture–and What We Can Do about It, gave us reason to consider Damon’s question and the implications it has on his likability: “It’s truly astonishing that at this moment in time, Matt Damon has managed to make himself intensely unlikable WITHOUT being accused of sexually assaulting anyone. (So far.)” Harding tweeted.
Minnie Driver gave her two cents about troubling male complacency in society to the Guardian in an interview, explaining that men “simply cannot understand what abuse is like on a daily level.” Her words capture one of the pivotal aspects of the #MeToo movement: how deeply this culture of dismissing or ignoring sexual assault and harassment affects its victims.
Damon also told Business Insider, “We’re in this watershed moment, and it’s great, but I think one thing that’s not being talked about is there are a whole shitload of guys–the preponderance of men I’ve worked with–who don’t do this kind of thing and whose lives aren’t going to be affected.”
Hi ladies, can we all just be quiet for second and stop chatting about our #metoo stories. Matt Damon wants us so to thank all the men who haven't assaulted us for not assaulting us. pic.twitter.com/wlN1SNsXQq
— Hanna Ines Flint (@HannaFlint) December 18, 2017
“Hi ladies,” journalist Hanna Ines Flint tweeted in response to Damon’s Business Insider comment, “can we all just be quiet a second and stop chatting about our #metoo stories. Matt Damon wants us to thanks all men who haven’t assaulted us for not assaulting us.”
Needless to say, his words on the historic #MeToo movement, created by Tarana Burke, have garnered a lot of reactions, joining the cultural discussion on the topic of sexual harassment and assault, one which will most likely continue to unfold.