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Tired of Street Harassment? Here’s Something You Can Do

One sunny, spring afternoon, I ran through a neighborhood near my college. Lost in my thoughts, I was startled to hear, “I like how your tits bounce when you run,” from a white guy in his 20s who was standing on a driveway with his friends. My initial shock at hearing such vulgar language was quickly followed by strong feelings of horror, humiliation, and anger. I slowed my pace and turned around to glare at them. They continued laughing. I resumed my run, blushing with fury and mortification. The words and laughter echoing in my mind ruined the rest of my day.

This story describes only one of the hundreds of times when men I do not know have harassed me in public. Street harassment has ranged from creepy leers to sexually explicit comments, from being followed and chased to being sexually grabbed. Street harassment has made me change my routine, my habits, and even impacted where I chose to live as an adult.

One of our most basic rights should be the right to walk down the street safely, without facing harassment, yet that is a right that many of us are routinely denied all over the world, from big city streets to rural roads, from public shopping centers to refugee camps.

Limited research shows that at least 80 percent of women worldwide have experienced gender-based street harassment, including unwanted leering, “catcalls,” sexually explicit comments, demands for a smile, groping, stalking, public masturbation, and ...

Rejection leads to a senseless death!

Last Friday night after a high school football game, Jazmine Thompson was in a car with three other female friends when Daniel Floyd Williams approached them, asked for sex, walked away, came back waving a gun and fired at the young women. Jazmine was killed . Her life is over. Daniel was charged with second-degree murder.

This is ridiculous! I’m tired of reading about boys and men who think they are so entitled to women’s attention and bodies on the street that they react with anger when the women reject them .

Jazmine is not the first (nor surely the last) female to be killed in such a senseless way by ...

Last Friday night after a high school football game, Jazmine Thompson was in a car with three other female friends when Daniel Floyd Williams approached them, asked for sex, walked away, came back waving a gun and ...

I am happy!

Hey feministing community –

I’ve written a few posts and comments on here over the last 10 months about my work with street harassment and my efforts to collect street harassment stories for a book I’ve been working on. Well, I am pleased to share that I got offered a book contract today and I am really happy!

After talking about writing a book, doing research, interviewing people, and collecting stories, being offered a contract finally makes me feel legitimate and makes the whole thing real!! Especially in this economy, I feel lucky to have found someone willing to take a chance on someone who has never published before, is only a few years out of college, and who has written ...

Hey feministing community –

I’ve written a few posts and comments on here over the last 10 months about my work with street harassment and my efforts to collect street harassment stories for a book I’ve been ...

Obligation to Report Street Harassers?

"Selangor Community Awareness Association member and lawyer Honey Tan said sexual harassment on public transportation in Malaysia is common and she said many women don’t report it.

“‘Even if you don’t think the police can solve the case, the statistics are important to justify the police’s request for more manpower [sic]. Making a police report is not just your right, but your obligation ,’ she said.” (via AsiaOne Motoring)

There are tons of reasons why victims/survivors don’t report incidents of street harassment & assault, like not having enough time/energy, fear of being blamed for the harassment/assault, fear of wasting their time because their complaint won’t be taken seriously, fear of retaliation from the harasser, an inability to identify the harasser, ...

"Selangor Community Awareness Association member and lawyer Honey Tan said sexual harassment on public transportation in Malaysia is common and she said many women don’t report it.

“‘Even if you don’t think the police can solve the ...

It’s Spring…

While gender-based street/public harassment occurs year round, it can ramp up in the spring. And hey look, it’s spring …

As some feministing community members may know, but most may not, I maintain an anti-street harassment website with strategies and resources for dealing with/fighting street harassment, and a companion blog with stories from contributors and my commentary on street harassment-related news. Recent stories you may have missed elsewhere but I covered on the blog include Anti-Harassment Day in Egypt (April 18), the one-year report on Boston’s anti-sexual harassment subway campaign , the murder of a woman runner in Vancouver , sexual harassment on the New Delhi metro , and a subway harasser ...

While gender-based street/public harassment occurs year round, it can ramp up in the spring. And hey look, it’s spring …

As some feministing community members may know, but most may not, I maintain an anti-street harassment website ...

New Foundation to aid women with restraining orders

Trigger Warning

I just learned about the Tiana Angelique Notice Foundation, created to aid women with restraining orders and prevent domestic violence. The foundation is named for Tiana Angelique (and created by her family), a 25 year old graduate student in CT, who was murdered by her ex-boyfriend on Feb. 14. It was the last time he violated her restraining order against him.

From a news article :

"At the time, Tiana had a restraining order that was supposed to keep Carter from contacting her. But he violated the order several times, friends and family said — once by posing as someone else and sending her e-mails.

In the end, he became emboldened, said a friend who asked not to be ...

Trigger Warning

I just learned about the Tiana Angelique Notice Foundation, created to aid women with restraining orders and prevent domestic violence. The foundation is named for Tiana Angelique (and created by her family), a 25 year ...

No Lesbians Allowed on XBOX Live. No Gays Either.

Via The Consumerist: "Teresa says that she was harassed by other players and later suspended from XBOX Live because she identified herself as a lesbian in her profile. When she appealed to Microsoft, she says they told her that other gamers found her sexual orientation ‘offensive.’"

From her e-mail to The Consumerist: "I was harassed by several players, ‘chased’ to different maps/games to get away from their harassment. They followed me into the games and told all the other players to turn me in because they didn’t want to see that crap or their kids to see that crap."

This has happened before to people who have "gay" in their user name. Here’s one of those stories.

Three cheers for ...

Via The Consumerist: "Teresa says that she was harassed by other players and later suspended from XBOX Live because she identified herself as a lesbian in her profile. When she appealed to Microsoft, she says ...

Naming Men in “Violence Against Women”?

Through volunteer work, my college education, and career, I’ve been involved with “violence against women” issues in some form or another since I was 17 years old (9 years).  I currently volunteer with the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network , I work for an organization that partially addresses sexual harassment & assault on campus & in workplaces, and I’m deeply entrenched in street harassment activism in my free time.

Despite all my involvement and education about various forms of “violence against women,” it wasn’t until I started reading Jackson Katz’s book The Macho Paradox: Why Some Men Hurt Women and How All Men Can Help this week that I finally noticed that men – the perpetrators ...

Through volunteer work, my college education, and career, I’ve been involved with “violence against women” issues in some form or another since I was 17 years old (9 years).  I currently volunteer with the Rape, Abuse ...

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