Leave it in 2022

Zaynab Kouatli, Opinion Editor

Welcome back wildcats and happy new year. We have made it to 2023. Last year was full of misogyny, carbon emissions and controversy. I have curated a list of what I think we should all leave behind in 2022.  

Andrew Tate, British-American kickboxer, and the spokesperson for misogyny, racism and sex trafficking rose to popularity in 2022. Let’s leave Tate and his opinions behind in the new year. Tate’s platform has sparked a breeding ground for young men to think highly of themselves and poorly of women. 

 This is a dangerous line to walk on because now thousands of young men are taking advice from a known sex trafficker. The problem with the alpha-male mentality is it outrightly promotes violence against women. However, the concepts of masculinity that Tate puts on the internet does harm to both genders. Men are now holding themselves to a standard that they cannot achieve.  

It is not healthy for men to think they must bottle their emotions and have a mindset that frames seeking help as weakness. As more men try to replicate Tate’s ideas, the more they intensify the isolation and insecurity they have in their identity.  

Although the patriarchy is created by men, it also hurts them as well (of course not to the extent of what it does to women). Men are told from a young age they cannot do certain things because they are deemed feminine. Little boys are taught to fight rather than communicate.  

They are restricted from certain colors and told they cannot play with dolls. Bad behavior is excused with a simple “boy will be boys.” These ideas follow suit into adulthood and lead to catastrophic consequences.  

Masculinity is not inherently a bad thing, but the way Tate and his followers have manipulated the meaning of masculinity is where the issue lies. In 2023, let’s leave this toxic idea of masculinity behind and instead choose better leaders who can represent a more achievable and progressive standard for masculinity.   

Secondly, 2023 is the year to stop fetishizing women loving women. Among the college student age group, the phenomenon of bar-sexuals is increasing. Bar-sexuals are straight women who will make-out with other straight women in public settings like bars for male attention. This idea is harmful because it invalidates the relationship of women loving women and makes it seem as if our relationships are for the pleasure of men.  

As a lesbian myself, I do not want to feel sexualized for having a relationship with a woman. Lesbian porn is the most researched category on most porn sights and to no surprise queer women are not the audience for this type of media. If you are a woman, you will face oppression sometime in your life. So, uplift and support other women by not feeding into harmful stereotypes that will hurt your own gender.  

Next, 2023 is the Year of the Rabbit. Get off your phone and touch some grass. Doom-scrolling has become a toxic habit that negatively impacts our mental and physical health.  

I’m sure you have become a victim of the constant scrolling and isolation that comes with being on social media. I’m not saying that you should abandon social media but limit your consumption, so you do not rot and erode your brain.  

Set timers so you are not spending your day watching other people live their lives rather than living your own. If you do not think you have the will power to stop, it might be healthy to consider deleting some social media apps until you have the strength to limit yourself.  

Finally, in 2023 let’s avoid consuming media created by alleged abusers. Adult swim’s TV show Rick and Morty, created by Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon, and the chokehold it has on incels and annoying people needs to die.  

Rick, a fan favorite, promotes ideas of misogyny and abuse for the sake of humor. And let’s be real, this show is unfunny, cringy and awkward. The animation is also unpleasant to the eye, and I feel quite honestly sick of seeing everywhere.  

You can like this show if you are consuming it as satire, but the fan base uses the show as a bible, dictating how they behave. The Rick and Morty fanbase is toxic and believes they have some deeper intellectual superiority.  

Male fans go on and on about how the shows explores the multiverse without having a single drop of understanding about anything scientific.   

To no surprise, this show has gone two full seasons without a single female writer. Above all, both creators of the show are filled with controversy.  

According to a Hannah Parry article in the DailyMail, Harmon starred as a child molester and baby rapist in the short ‘comedy’ video Daryl, released in 2009. But wait, it gets worse. NBC reported Roiland, the co-creator of the series, faces charges of one felony count of domestic battery with corporal injury and one felony count of false imprisonment by menace, violence, fraud and/or deceit. 

I know 2022 seemed bleak for a lot of us. The Year of the Rabbit represents peace and prosperity; somethings that we all can look forward to. New year, better you.