What’s Up With Shia?

By Jayna Anderson

IG: @snowleoppy

I was curious. He is just so cute, unpredictable, passionate, and yes, problematic. I was googling my boy today only to *Gasp*: Shia LaBeouf was recently arrested for drunkenness, disorderly conduct, and obstruction in Savannah, Georgia. After a drunken encounter with someone over a cigarette, he spewed profanity in front of women and children, becoming aggressive towards an officer. Google his name, and you can read the reports yourself.

Ok. Hold up. Let’s back this up a minute. He spewed vulgarities in front of women. WHAT! Shall we marinate on that for a moment? What a terrible day it must have been that a woman was subject to hearing profanities! Those poor, feeble minded women!!

Why do popular media sources feel the need to emphasize mentioning women and children as if they are two innocent, easily persuaded groups of people. Upon hearing vulgarities, women must be shaken to the core, upset with the terrible cuss words spewed from Shia’s drunken mouth. Was he at a women & children only event? Nope, just on the streets of Savannah. Presumably, men were around as well, but the media didn’t bother including them. Why? Because women are feeble citizens of the United States; if they aren’t transformed into vulgar beings after this encounter, then they surely were bedridden for days after witnessing the drunken terrors of Shia.

Why are we still lumping women in with the children? Children have developing brains that act like sponges, soaking in every little bit of information going on around them; are women the same? Is that how we are viewed?

My eyes hurt from rolling around in my head. You might be rolling yours too, wondering why I chose to dissect such a seemingly harmless statement.

Microaggressions are often times harder to detect, unpack and address than blatant aggressions. Covert sexism perpetuates stereotypes of women as lesser than. Less capable of witnessing a drunken mess yell cuss words, less capable of withstanding trauma, less capable of throwing a shield up, less capable of protecting themselves from erratic behavior exhibited by a stranger, less capable of having agency. Did Shia get physical with any women & children? No, he just yelled words at an officer, while in the presence of them. Were the women at risk by the cussing and yelling? Honestly, no. If you haven’t seen somebody flipping out on the street, you’re not living.

Of course, I can see how a child might be upset by yelling. It is loud, aggressive, and it disrupts the expected behavior of “civilized people”. But, don’t grown women know by now that behavior shifts majorly when people start drinking? Does this disrupt their perception of a grown white male? Could it possibly?

Shia’s outburst is just one of many that happens everyday all over the United States. Drunken people are entitled and aggressive, loud and obnoxious. No shocker there. Despite speaking out on his sobriety and how he has to avoid alcohol, and publically apologizing for his awful behavior, Shia surprises no one with another outburst.

What really surprised me here, was the unnecessary victimization of women that witnessed him yell at an officer. Over victimization of women in situations where they were not a victim, perpetuates a stereotype of frail women. This stereotype turns in on itself in situations where a woman truly was a victim, making her case for justice harder sought.