Actor and comedian Terry Crews, the most visible male member of the #MeToo movement, shared some very real talk at last week’s Women in the World Summit 2018 in New York City. Speaking on toxic masculinity, Crews declared that “masculinity can be a cult.” He went on to stunningly compare misogyny to chattel slavery, pointing to a deliberate disconnect and lack of empathy that prevents some men from recognizing women’s pain or issues:
Men who are in this cult—as a woman, [you] talk, but a guy is not looking at you as even all the way human. And this is what you have to understand: There’s a humanity issue here. You’re like, “Why don’t you hear me? Why don’t you see my feelings?” And they’re like, “But you’re not all the way human. You’re here for me. You’re here for my deal.” And this is real.
Crews doesn’t absolve himself from this dysfunction, admitting his own complicity in once believing that ”simply because I was a man that I was more valuable than my wife and than the other women in my life.”
He then concedes that patriarchy is a false entitlement, saying, “You know, men have been sold a bill of goods for a long, long time.”
But perhaps the realest moment of Crews’ commentary was his recollection of his former career as a football player, using as a metaphor time spent in strip clubs, where the illusion was broken the moment a dancer would divulge any details of her offstage life:
“I don’t want you to be a human; I want you to be an object. I want you to be something pretty to look at. But as you talk, you’re making things too real for me.” So scary.
Actually, Terry, it’s terrifyingly accurate.