The dangers of a Boys' Club

This is not new, but it is great, so I thought it was worth sharing.

As great as it is, there is stillnothing new in this clip that women haven't been saying for a long time now.In a way it strikes at the heart of the difficulty of how it's possible to get things to change.

We too fear being excluded.

Women can't fix this. Women have been doing what they can to participate, be visible, create new content, promote each others' achievements, build their own skills, push their own edges. Women fighting for change is not the problems. Instead, women's bodies, femininity and skills are still seen as the 'problem', and it is up to men to change their own minds and hearts, to change their responses to women's participation.

By highlighting the challenges for women to participate, at the way the accusation that fear of exclusions keeps the culture closed to difference, this clips hints at the challenges for many others to participate freely and safely as well.

We too fear being excluded.

This is clear in the story of skateboarder Brian Anderson, and his own struggles with fitting in skating culture, even as he was one of the most dominant and respected figures. This little film is great and totally worth watching al the way through.

BA came out as gay in 2016. In this doco, he reveals that he was "totally scared" of anyone in skateboarding finding out he was gay, and that he chose to hide his sexuality because he thought that it would be "dangerous to talk about it" in the world of professional skateboarding and skateboarding culture more broadly.

Brian Anderson is a super successful, highly respected, really handsome, conventionally masculine man, who was revered an adored and admired in his world, and yet he feared people knowing he was gay. So imagine how hard it is for someone who conforms even less to established markers of belonging.

We too fear being excluded.

Our own fears around belonging and exclusion have the effect of excluding others, and as long as "we too fear being excluded" to the point where we create closed circles of self-reference, then we make things truly dangerous for anyone who doesn't fit.


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