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Everyone is picking sides over the Ansari story


You can't claim ignorance about a sexual encounter and also claim to support a movement that seeks to cure that same ignorance. This week, more so than at any point in the movement's brief history, there's visceral discussion about its potential for causing harm.

The email was a direct response to Banfield's criticism of the writer's subject, code named, Grace, who claimed that her date with Ansari was the worst night of her life. She says her greatest lessons about sexual violence have come from racialized, queer or disabled women - of all ages - who have shared their nuanced understanding.

Ansari has said he apologized immediately after the woman told him about her discomfort during an encounter he believed to be consensual. To distinguish good sex from bad, wonderful from violative, is a task consent was never meant to perform.

"That is not the way we have this conversation, as women or men - as journalists", Banfield added.

"His reputation is now in tatters", Lukas wrote in an email. But the #MeToo movement hasn't stopped there.

"What she experienced with Ansari is not OK".

Affirmative consent.requires all parties to be visibly happy, turned on, and vocally expressing enthusiasm throughout the encounter-which, if you haven't noticed, is pretty characteristic of decent sex in general.

I think it was a little low of the accuser to anonymously release this recount after receiving an apology and seeing him work to set the situation right. We thought this "bad sex" was normal.

Michael Cunningham, a psychology professor at the University of Louisville, said the Grace/Ansari encounter reflected misunderstandings that may arise due to differences between conventional dating relationships and hook-ups. The story of the September hookup immediately raised questions about whether Aziz was guilty of sexual harassment or of being a really bad date. "When he did not rise to her expectations, she converted her understandable disappointment into a false #MeToo". From its start condemning the clearly disgusting behavior of men in power like Harvey Weinstein, #MeToo has descended into a crusade to criminalize awkwardness and failure to read women's minds. What has changed, more than anything else, is the ability for women to be heard. The caliber of this 22-year-old young women ... That's the terrifying and handsome thing about romantic relationships: When you're with someone, you get the private version of a person, the messy, wonderful and vulnerable parts that the rest of the world never gets to see. "And from the male perspective, he can't quite figure out what the woman wants".

Ashley Banfield
Ashley Banfield

The next day, before the woman could figure out what to say to Ansari about the date, he allegedly sent her a text message.

Among men, likewise, there are varying views. But that, she said, encapsulates the tension between the public's need to know and the obligation of the media to protect sources, particularly people who say they are victims of sexual assault and request anonymity.

Here we have an eternal dilemma; two people together, but on two separate emotional trajectories: Grace was delighted to be going out with a famous actor who has posed as someone sensitive and interested in women's issue.

In a sense, the case with Ansari seemed inevitable given the length that the #MeToo movement has gone so far.

The anonymous woman had described their date in detail in the Babe.net story on Saturday, claiming the actor had pressured her for sex at his apartment over the course of the night while they were on a date. There is even a new app for sexual consent, where potential partners can legally cross their t's. "It transforms what ought to be a movement for women's empowerment into an emblem for female helplessness".

While there is no doubt Ansari's insistence was ungentlemanly, feminists have been telling men for years that they don't want gentlemen. "Grace" was not working for Ansari or looking for a job from him.

She says it can be hard to "just sit back and listen", but that it's crucial that this happens.

Since the Aziz Ansari conversation began over the weekend it has reaped several think-pieces from multiple sites. "She should have just kept this to herself".

Dismayed at how things were going, she told him, "You guys are all the f***ing same", and left crying.




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