Stephen Colbert Gives His Thoughts On Misogyny Toward Teen Girls


When Comedian and late night TV host Stephen Colbert talks, we listen. Why? Because he is not only accurately funny, but he has a lot of very intelligent things to say about the state of the world, and isn’t afraid to call out the ridiculous ways women are portrayed and treated by the media, which you can see in this video.

More recently, he shared his thoughts with a different audience than he is used to, teen girls, as part of the ‘Ask a Grown Man’ segment on Rookie Magazine where grown men answer questions from readers. Given that the majority of Rookie’s readers are teen girls, the questions were going to be from girls who inevitably wanted to get a grown man’s opinion on the male issues they are currently suffering with.

Yes, we used the word “suffering” because when you are a teenager trying to figure the world and yourself out, everything is a big freaking deal ok!

While Stephen is normally seen in his comedic role on TV with regular eye brow raises, he shows his laid-back side in the video below when answering questions from teen girls. Being that he is a husband and a dad to three children (including a daughter, Madeleine) it seems he was a great person to ask advice from.

He was given four questions to answer, and the first one was a great insight to his thoughts on misogyny and why it exists in our current culture.

“I know most men are jerks,” the question starts off. “When guys, especially teenage guys do stuff like cat-call and make jokes about rape, do they know their behavior is harmful? Is that why they do stuff like that, or is it because society has taught them to be misogynistic?”

Here’s how Stephen answered in a nutshell:

“I think the reason why boys do this kind of stuff is to get your attention. And no I don’t think they know it’s harmful, because I don’t think they mean to be harmful, they just desperately want you to pay attention to them.”

While that may be a good answer, we are sure more teenage boys do understand the full ramifications of rape now that the media has been reporting on many cases of teen and college-aged boys being sent to jail for rape allegations.

His answer continues with some good advice for the letter-writer herself, and teens in general.

“My advice would be, If you don’t know the person, just ignore it. If you do know the person, they really care what you think…I would say ‘Please don’t do that, because I really don’t like it.'”

“For this sort of thing to stop, boys have to be educated. Does our society educate boys to be misogynistic? It probably doesn’t value girls and women as much as it should, and boys probably see that as a signal that they can get away with things like devaluing women. What they think of as playfully or comically threatening, they do need to be told it’s wrong.”

It’s interesting to hear these kind of statements being made from a man, which is why ‘Ask a Grown Man’ is kinda awesome! While we at GTHQ acknowledge not all men rape, and not all men just play into the misogyny that exists in culture, we can’t ignore the problems that do exist.

Thank you Stephen for being a living breathing example that men are awesome, men do stand up for women, and men do appreciate being part of the conversation about sexism and aren’t afraid to share their opinions without feeling threatened.

Here is the full video, where you can see the other questions he gives his answers to:




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