‘Time’s up!’: Initiative calls on men to act to end gender violence

Madrid, Nov 25 (EFE).- A group of high profile men in Spain, including filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar, said men must take responsibility to end sexist behavior and gender violence at an event marking the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on Thursday.

The director of the Cervantes Institute, Luis García Montero, Almodóvar, singer Leiva and singer-songwriter and poet Marwán were among those to lend their voices to the campaign try to put a stop to sexist violence, in an initiative promoted by Efeminista.

“Taking advantage of the fact that a girl is drunk to make out with her”, “doubting her relationship with her friends”, “controlling her social media” or “following a woman in the street” are just some examples of the violent and sexist behavior that the group said are unacceptable.

“I would tell younger people that their first contact with sex and with the pleasure of the senses should not be through porn (…) that the reality of a relationship between a man and a woman goes through other paths of reciprocity and respect”, Almodóvar said.

“Love is a bond of life, a pact, not a possession. Love is holding hands, walking down the street, side by side, not chained together, not imprisoned (…). Male violence is a lack of respect, not only for women but also for the dignity that we men deserve in our lives and in our relationships”, García Montero said.

“We have to start by looking at a lot of behaviors and rhetoric that are ingrained in our culture. Let’s start there, there is a lot of work to be done,” Leiva said.

“I am lucky that I am not harassed on public transport; I am not touched on public transport; I am not constantly sent sexist images or vulgar things that could hurt me,” Marwan reflected.

“Nor do I feel afraid when I walk down the street at night on my way home, nor do they throw things at me or drug me in a bar to take advantage of me. These are things that women suffer constantly,” he added.

The prevalence of intimate partner violence is estimated to be 43% for emotional abuse,12% for sexual abuse and 8% for physical abuse, according to Claudia García-Moreno, team leader of Sexual Health, Gender, Reproductive Rights, and Adolescence (GRR) at the World Health Organization.EFE


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