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Premier Wynne, in Ontario, announced new measures recently to end sexual violence and harassment, using strong words to describe the purpose as being to end "the culture of misogyny" which is "deep-rooted in society." Misogyny goes beyond exercise of power and control to hatred of women and girls.
I will never forget how excited I was to be invited to watch a movie with the popular boy I liked. I primped for hours. (I was, after all, a teenager grappling with my own new sexuality.) When I got there, he did not put on the movie we agreed to watch, but a porn film. I had never seen one before. He unzipped his pants, pushed and pulled at me. I cried the whole walk home.
We don't talk honestly enough about what it's like being a teen girl, or what it can be like. If we did talk about it, what it was like for us, perhaps we wouldn't be so harsh on them. Perhaps we'd see their lives for the small and large violations they're often made up of; and what those violations do.
The problems begin when they go back to my previous employer even for an informal reference. When only days earlier I had been asked how quickly I could start, what greets me afterward is stone silence.