In case you missed it, there is a new gender positivity campaign out there called “Grab Her By The Brain.” Does it sound familiar? It’s actually a play on words of one of Donald Trump’s now-infamous comments about grabbing women in a derogatory manner. I’ll spare you his actual quotes here, but naturally, you can find them all over the internet.
The point of “Grab Her By The Brain,” according to its website, is to promote respect for women and empower them, rather than allow them to be objectified. The website clearly spells out the campaign’s mission, highlights the fact that it involved in charity work and even has a merchandise store from which you can buy a hat with the campaign’s name on it. At first glance, it looks pretty legit.
However, a Buzzfeed article from Thursday shows a plethora of tweets by people who are, well, less than pleased with the campaign. Many argued that the movement’s title is totally inappropriate, stating that women are not something to grab whatsoever. Then, there are others who believe this campaign is a total joke and living up to its intentions.
I’ll play devil’s advocate and say that my feelings toward this campaign are a bit conflicted. On one hand, I can absolutely relate to the angry commentators. Why should women be grabbed anywhere? Acknowledging that a woman has a brain does not make it OK to still treat her as something you can move, manipulate and possess. As a woman, I take that very seriously and very personally. By continuing to pair the words “grab” and “her” together, you are essentially objectifying women all over again.
On the other hand, I kind of appreciate the title of the campaign. If its name had been created out of the blue, not inspired by any other factor, I would have been utterly disgusted. It would’ve been blatantly disrespectful, aggressive and downright unnecessary. But because it’s pulling from such a relevant issue and point of discussion in today’s world, it kind of makes sense. It appropriates Trump’s inexcusable comments and puts a positive spin on them. It really forces people to pinpoint exactly what is wrong with Trump’s sexist remarks (if that wasn’t already obvious), and suggests what we should be promoting about women instead. “Grab her by the brain” is a way of saying that women are so much more than a body. It’s their brains that you should take notice of, and that is a saying I can respect.
I become so infuriated every time I hear videos of Trump making appalling sexual comments about women that I hope everything else in this world stays as far away from them as possible. Then again, I appreciate the fact that “Grab Her By The Brain” is taking a direct stab at such poor behavior and altering it to create a healthier message. Would I have chosen a controversial title for a campaign that is supposed to be inspirational and empowering? Definitely not, but I get what it was going for.