The Treatment of Creepy Men

Once upon a time, there was a guy who we will call “N”. Let’s just accept as a given that N was very, very creepy. He was going to a lot of shows, and all the female performers had him on their radar. He came by himself, he always sat up front, and he always walked around with a shit-eating grin on his face. He was undoubtedly on the spectrum. He followed all the performers’ public Facebook pages. He drove quite some distance to attend shows.

I was talking to one of the performers, and the topic of N came up. The performers were worried about N. Something needed to be done about him.

I went into problem-solving mode when I heard that. Also, I felt some distant kinship to N, and I figured if I could do something about him, then perhaps it would serve to make up for some of my own creepiness.

So I started probing. What was N doing that was a problem? What were the performers worried he would do? To make a long story short, he hadn’t done anything. He was just as I’ve described him, nothing more. N hadn’t done anything to anyone, he hadn’t threatened or even implied anything inappropriate. He hadn’t said anything offensive, demeaning, or suspicious. In fact, there wasn’t a drop of toxic masculinity in him. He was just extremely creepy.

I did end up chatting him up one evening shortly after. N was a quintessential geek, but he seemed like a pretty nice guy to me. He worked in IT. He had no style sense. As I said, he was probably on the spectrum. In fact, I question whether N had ever had a malevolent thought in his life.

He was just creepy.

And because he was creepy, and for no other reason, he was nearly ostracized — from a community that preaches acceptance and tolerance, no less.

I want to be careful about generalizations, but it seems that women have an aversion to creepy men. I don’t just mean women don’t want to date them. They want them gone. They get angry about creepy men. To hear women talk, when a creepy guy talks to them, it is some kind of injustice. Again, I don’t want to make generalizations, but when I’ve heard women commiserate about creepy men, they all agree.

What if ugly women were treated that way?

Okay, ugly women are treated that way. However, it’s not condoned. The general consensus is that it is an awful way to behave. This is so universally espoused that a whole movie was made about it. It is immoral, or at least “shallow”, to treat a woman like less of a person because she is unattractive. The guys who do it tend to be ashamed enough that they rarely talk openly about it. Most of us have mothers, and we are taught early on.

What harm is done by creepiness? None. They are simply unattractive.

It is shallow to treat a woman as less of a person if she is unattractive, which for women is a mostly physical characteristic. However, it is completely normal and accepted to treat a man as less of a person if he is unattractive, which for men is mostly about personality. Do men with unattractive personalities really deserve to be treated the way they are?