Appalachian Ohio, Athens GA, Atlanta, Berkeley, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Columbia MO, Columbus, Des Moines, Durham & Chapel Hill, East Lansing, Fredericksburgh VA, Houston, Los Angeles, Muncie IN, New York City, NYU, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Plattsburgh, Richmond VA, San Francisco, Tucson, Twin Cities
Last week, I stopped at the local Starbucks to buy a cappuccino, when I noticed an older man sitting alone at a table who seemed to be staring at me. Let me just say that I’m a freshman in high school, and I wasn’t wearing anything ridiculous, just a t-shirt and shorts. The man seemed to be at least fifty years old, and when I turned around to pay for my drink, I realized that he was staring at my butt. Not even trying to hide it, or at least having the decency to look ashamed when I turned around. I was thoroughly creeped out, and since I was just by myself (I was meeting a friend), I was too scared to sit down alone, in case he approached me. I was so uncomfortable I just took my coffee and left. Later when I told my friend about it, I said, “I guess my shorts are kind of short.” She stopped me right there, saying “You have the right to wear shorts, it’s hot out! That doesn’t mean he has the right to look at you like that!” I realized that she was right. That random man made me feel unsafe and uncomfortable in my own neighborhood, blocks from my house, and it’s just as bad in other places. it isn’t fair, it wasn’t my fault, and it has to stop.
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