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Faceslapping: It’s Time to Bring It Back

Faceslapping: It's Time to Bring It Back | NextTribe

In the wake of the Weinstein scandal, it occurs to me it might be time to resurrect good old-fashioned faceslapping. I’m not talking about the bitch slap (defined, per urban etymology, as woman on woman). I mean what I call the beast slap — what a lady would deliver to any individual who dared to physically affront her. Grab, grope, or otherwise touch me without permission? Meet my five stinging friends, squarely between cheek and jowl.

Such a slap may well have been a knee-jerk reaction for our mothers if confronted with a “masher” (as sexual abusers were known back then). Should we not employ it ourselves — and recommend it to our daughters? We’re encouraged to learn self-defense as protection against those who lurk in dark alleys. Why not take matters into our own hand upon encountering a molester in the professional or social sphere?

In the movies of our era, we watched Cher slap Nicolas Cage (Moonstruck), Meg Ryan slap Billy Crystal (When Harry Met Sally) and Andie MacDowell repeatedly slap Bill Murray (Groundhog Day). And of course we’ve all seen Vivian Leigh’s slap-happy Scarlett lay one on Clark Gable’s Rhett. These cinematic smacks were delivered for offenses less serious than unwanted sexual contact — and the effect was immediate and sobering.

But if physically connecting with a slimeball in any way seems too repugnant, at least make use of the irrevocable vocal slap. Give the beast a “No!” “Stop!” “Get the *%&#^@ away from me!” As Lupita Nyong’o wrote in The New York Times about her horrific encounters with Weinstein: “Let us never shut up about this kind of thing.”

Nina Malkin

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Speaking as a forerunner and award-winner in empowerment based women’s self defense, having trained thousands of women in various countries, and as a former trauma therapist, I am delighted to see this bit of outrage, which I feel and can validate times a thousand. Sometimes force is needed, when the only way out is through. I sincerely hope in this day and age, that the idea and reality of wielding explosive physical force in self defense is not a conflict. Self defense exists on a continuum, from dealing with unwanted touch to setting forceful verbal and spatial boundaries; from recognizing… Read more »

You’re joking? You really think slapping a dude is going to stop him from sexual harassment, groping or rape? If anything, you will either end up with the tables turned and the dude laying assault charges on you OR he will accelerate his own physical assault on you with the justification that YOU started it. WORST ADVICE EVER. Clearly, this person has never had to deal with a sexual assault or Harvey Weinstien situation.

Absoutlely untrue. And as a matter of fact, I have had to fend and fight off sexual and street attacks- numerous times from travel days and more… inlcuding wanna be rapists. (And my story does not stand alone.) And I am not suggesting that a slap would have necessarily been or be the best “tool” to use against Weinstein, of course not, a complex terrifying situation, although it could be used and has been used, powerfully not in a weak way and often followed by other close range explosive moves no-nonsense moves in order to stun an assailant or would-be… Read more »

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