Illustration by Ryan Alexander-Tanner

I can't remember a time in my life when I wasn't afraid of sharks. I've heard hella people say that Jaws made people afraid of sharks, and that's probably true—but I'm sure it also has something to do with how sharks TOTALLY FUCK YOU UP FOREVER AND MAKE YOUR BODY LOOK LIKE SPAGHETTI BARF if they get their jaws around you.

Sharks are scary in a primal, universal way, so nobody is going to give you the business for being afraid of sharks. If you're in the water and you see a shark and you flip the fuck out like you for real saw a ghost, nobody is going to tell you you're overreacting. If anything they're probably going to be the Shaggy to your Scooby-Doo. Sharks are fucking terrifying. Sharks, on average, kill five people a year.

Now, I understand the urge to say "not all men" when someone points out the violence and oppression men routinely level against women. I know how unfair it feels to see your entire gender impugned because of the evil, disgusting actions of a few of its members. After a lifetime of respecting physical boundaries and being shy and pleasant and nice, you're lumped in with a bunch of rapists and misogynists and miscreants and monsters just because you also have a penis—a penis YOU didn't force on anyone, you would like to point out.

I understand the urge because I used to indulge the urge. I used to say "not all men" when someone would complain about the way society treated women. If you're presently the type of person who still needs to point out "not all men"? I get it, I really do, but get this: NO FUCKING DOY.

Of course not all men, you yutz. The fuck is someone supposed to do? Type "men (except Seth, who is cool)" when they're talking about trends? Or even just "men, but not ALL men" every single time, like some kind of waffling dingus? Why, because it might hurt your feelings if they don't? Are you afraid someone will read that women have a fear of men because of personal experiences and then go, "Wait a minute, a man somewhere raped a woman, THAT MEANS SETH IS A RAPIST." NO SETH, NOBODY IS DOING THAT, NOW ALSO GET THIS:

One in five women have REPORTED being the victim of sexual assault, and it's important to note the word "report," because there are people who don't report. One in five. Women are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends every day. Women are killed simply because they're women, and at a rate that is so fucking disgusting and horrifying and unfathomable that if Steven Spielberg made a dramatic black-and-white movie about it, that movie would immediately win every Oscar forever.

The problem is real, women are sharing their experiences, and you think it's important to point out that it isn't all men, that it's a small percentage committing these atrocities. One in five women report being sexually assaulted and you would have the world believe that it's all being done by 12 MEGARAPISTS, traveling from town to town, raping and assaulting, while the other 3.5 billion men on Earth act chill. Your mother or your sister or your girlfriend or your wife or your daughter or your best friend, or more than likely a combination of those people, has been fucking raped—and you're afraid of sharks.