The Naked And Famous ‘A Still Heart’
In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal breaking, people all around the world have come forward with their own stories of sexual harassment and abuse at the hands of strangers, friends, colleagues, and those in a position of power. In an effort to consolidate the testimonies of so many different people, many have begun using the hashtag ‘#metoo’ – highlighting the real need for a change in the way society treats women (and of course those of us who are transgender or gender fluid). I’ve used the hashtag, as have many of my friends – it seems that very few people are able to say that they have never been sexually harassed. The use of the hashtag, has of course garnered criticism, mainly from the ‘not all men!’ camps, who feel that any critique of the patriarchy is a personal slight. To those people I ask, what have you done to be an ally to women? When you see a woman getting unwanted attention from men on the tube do you say something? When you notice your female colleague is being spoken over in meetings, do you make an example of the interrupter? When your male friends engage in ‘locker room talk’ do you raise your concerns? If the answer to any of these questions is ‘no’, then you could be doing more. You may be an ally in principle, but unless more men make the effort to support their female and transgendered friends in actual real life (not just over Facebook statuses that make you look like a super cool progressive dude), things will never change. The sad reality is that when women raise objections to daily aggressions (and more serious crimes like rape or domestic abuse), their voices are often drowned out – this is why we need men to be our advocates and our allies. One place to start, is to retire the old cry of ‘not all men!’. Feminists know that not all men commit rape, or harass their colleagues. We all have fathers, or brothers, friends, teachers, and bosses who treat us with respect, that we love and respect in turn. It is so utterly unhelpful to co-opt these social media movements to voice your own egotistical concerns – so if you’re an ally, prove it. Instead of telling us, why don’t you show us instead? Instead of talking, listen. Sexual harassment can happen to anyone, regardless of gender, sexuality, ethnicity or age. It happens to men too. The reason why women are at the forefront of this conversation, is because statistically, the victims of sexual harassment and assault are disproportionately female – and it’s rooted in the way society perceives us. I’m 23 and I’m tired. I’m fucking exhausted to tell you the truth. I’m tired of being scared of being attacked. I’m tired of my manager having to ask our male colleagues and clients to treat me with the basic respect they give to men in my position. I’m tired of carrying my keys in my hand as a weapon on walks home at night. I’m tired of seeing basic rights like abortion and equal pay debated on TV. I’m tired of Harvey Weinstein and the many, many powerful people who abuse their position. I’m tired of being met with criticism when I, or any of my sisters speak up about this. Right now I’m listening to The Naked And Famous. The Kiwi band have just released an acoustic medley of two of their hits ‘A Stillness‘ and ‘Hearts Like Hours‘ rather cleverly called ‘A Still Heart‘, taken from their upcoming album ‘Stripped’, which features analogue re-workings of their best known tracks from their last three albums. Featuring gently plucked guitar, psychedelic synth harmonies and sweeping sine waves, lead singer Alisa Xayalith’s feathery vocal is soothing and stirring at the same time as she navigates this sublimely composed mashup of two disparate songs. Enjoy.