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A Facebook Conversation With a REAL Man (Warning: Language)

So on Wednesday, as I sat licking my wounds about the results of this election, I shared a photo on my Facebook profile, one of several that I shared that day. It was the screenshot of a tweet from Liz Strand (@LizStrand) which has been shared on twitter over 110K times.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

As a sexual assault survivor, this is one of my biggest issues with Donald Trump, and it resonated with me. I offered no comment when I shared it. But in a very short amount of time, I noticed that a stranger had commented on it. One Jason Townsend, who (from what I could see in his profile) lives here in Utah, has a wife and little girl and may or may not be in the military. What followed was a two day conversation in which he got progressively nastier.

Now, I admit that my post was public. All of my posts are. I don’t really believe that privacy settings do much. And even if I did, I would have shared it publicly. I’m mad as hell about the election result, and I will voice that to the heavens. That said, I have also gone on record to say that I know we can’t change it, and I am going to get behind my President, if not the man himself.

But back to the conversation. When I noticed two names that I did not recognize, each challenging the post, I asked who they were. “Who in the blue hell are you people?” were the words I used.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

Immediately, Mr Townsend went on the offensive, telling me to stop whining. And get behind Trump. One of my friends made a comment about how it is probably safer to stand behind Trump than in front of him, lest he grab you by the pussy. She also brought up the very valid point that she felt a need to protect her daughter who is disabled and biracial.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

I am not a fan of debating with people I don’t know, as I have seen the worst of humanity come out online, and I reminded him that he was commenting on MY post. He countered with the point that mine was a public post which he was free to comment on. And while that is absolutely true, there are certain social rules that generally keep people from seeking out random strangers to belittle. I thought about blocking him, but I gave him the benefit of the doubt that he might actually leave. I tried ignoring him, but if I didn’t answer, he just came back. You can’t see from the timestamps below, as I only took screenshots once he started deleting his comments, but there was 40 minutes between each of these comments. When I didn’t respond, he came back to leave another.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

Once again, the two comments above were made half an hour apart. He didn’t get a response, so he resorted to calling me stupid to see if I would bite.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

As you can see, I asked him to leave the conversation more than once, but he was  not willing. That’s when another of my friends stepped in. This particular friend is from England, and is smart as a whip. She had been watching our conversation and realized he wasn’t going to back off, so she decided to engage with him.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

She then decided to say what we were all by then thinking. She told him to fuck off. Now up to this point, I feel that I’d given him rather more respect than he’d given me. And when my friend told him to fuck off, I was for a moment concerned, but mostly elated. I’d wanted to say it, but I had wanted to keep the peace. I’d asked him to piss off earlier, but this was really more to the point.

But he couldn’t take that either. He went to my friend’s profile in order to learn more about her. He came back and asked her how her parish would react to seeing her quote on their FB page. In essence, he was threatening her. Clearly he doesn’t understand the English, though, as immediately a member of her parish saw it and confirmed that they were all in agreement with her sentiment.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

At this point, I’m afraid he started writing comments he knew were wrong. He started to delete his inflammatory posts, and I wasn’t quick enough to screenshot them. You’ll have to take my word for it, but he called me a bitch and said that my children were going to run into trouble and get beat up at school because I’m a bad mom. In the screenshot below, you can see that my friend and I seem to be talking to ourselves, but there are missing comments from him. One of them said I should get ready for some “REAL” stalking and for him to start acting like an asshole for real. As we continued to take no shit, he finally said he was done with the conversation. If only…

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

Oh man. This poor man. I didn’t realize that by him commenting and being so aggressive and nasty, that he was forced into being accused for being aggressive and nasty. Maybe we were in the wrong…

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

Orrrr maybe he is just like every other asshole who can’t take it when strong women stand up to mysogyny. “Go fuck yourself with a cactus you cunt!” That’s a real man right there. But of course he immediately deleted all of his comments and took his toys home. I went to bed, laughing a little as I looked back at the screenshots.

And then I woke up. And I saw yet ANOTHER alert with his name on it.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

What it's like to challenge a man on facebook.

SO. The moral of his story is that everything is okay because he didn’t call ME a cunt. He called my FRIEND a cunt. All is well then, really, right?

What is the lesson to be learned here, anyway? That I’m just a girl, and I should not share opinions, I should not engage in any form of debate with a man, and that it is okay for a man to call me stupid, a bitch, a cunt or tell me to go fuck myself with a cactus.

There is SO much wrong with this story. And this is what is going to keep happening every single day because we elected a president who has NO respect for women. Let’s all rejoice as we anticipate our future for the next four years. Hallelujah!

Thoughts on Donald Trump winning the Presidency.
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