Not a great start to the day. At 9am I’m standing waiting for the crosswalk at a busy intersection in my town and this kid (maybe 18 or 19) is leaning up against a wall and he starts saying “You’re sexy…What are you up to…We should hang out sometime”. Kind of repeating this over and over. The area was filled with people all going about their business. So I called him out- loudly – and told him to leave me alone. It made a scene and got everyone’s attention.
I know sometimes it’s dangerous to try to stand up for yourself, when you’re one on one with a harasser. But when someone’s victimizing you like that they want to feel tougher and more in control than you. But, when there’s a crowd of people on your side- you take back control!
My girlfriend and I were just walking through the front doors of our apartment building, when some red-faced guy just barked out: LESBIAN! I turned back to glare at him and he just sneered. He added: I guess I’m jealous! I hate that our orientation defines how people view us and that so many guys see lesbians through the same scope; mere sex objects.
Welp, today I am a “ghetto bitch” because I didn’t “smile”. And somehow I feel bad about it? Not fair.
Here’s our weekly update:
As part of the RaiseForWomen Challenge with the Huffington post and Half the Sky, Hollaback! Intern Julia Daye published a piece on in the Huffington Post titled “Shaping Stories of Violence: Power of the Online Bystander.” Check it out!
Hollaback! Chennai covers the story of a street harassment workshop in Kadapa, Andhra Pradesh. The leader of the workshop, Bonnie Zare, turned to Hollaback! for materials to use during the workshop. Horray for spreading resources!
Hollaback! Edinburgh attended the Scottish Parliament’s Cross-Party Group (CPG) on Men’s Violence Against Women and Children last week. There, hollas reported on their work to-date, survey results on street harassment, and some forthcoming plans.
Hollaback! Boston welcomes Nicole, the newest edition to their HollaTeam! This upcoming June, Boston hollas are partnering with Boston GLOW (Girls’ Leadership, Organized Women) to host a workshop in June on spotting, stopping, and responding to street harassment. In preparation for the workshop, Boston invites you to fill out this survey. Check out their newest post on their site, “Understanding Street Harassment” by Kayla. In this week’s edition of Boston’s “Introducing” series, hollas interview Katie, a Boston-based writer and editor. Finally, Hollaback! Boston is saying goodbye to one of its founding members, Jane Carper. Thank you Jane for all you’ve done for this Holla family!
Hollaback! Philly celebrated the launch of their street harassment comic book this past week at Locust Moon Comics. This weekend, hollas are heading to Philadelphia Wizard Con to exhibit their new publication.
I am walking down the street and a man says” you got a lot of ass come here to big daddy”. I ignore him and he calls me a hoe.
Stopped into a pub for a nightcap and some food after attending a fun lecture elsewhere. I used to feel safe at this neighborhood pub but things have changed. I sat at the far end of the bar where there are no gambling machines and drank my wine. Drunk guy comes over from mid bar to tell me “how pretty I am”. “Thank you. I have a boyfriend”. He leaves for a minute but comes back protesting to his friend “how pretty I am”. Clearly not caring that I don’t wish to talk to him at all! “please leave me alone” I say and I get up and go to the bathroom – hoping he will go sit down and leave me alone. After spending extra time in the bathroom I come back out. He’s still there! The random guy next to me tells him to leave me alone. I ask for my check and prepare to leave. He keeps trying to talk to me. After having asked three times and being frustrated I took my purse and hit him in the head with it. :). It worked! Everyone laughed at him which made him leave! I will use that move again. Wanted to share.
I was at Zaxby’s and my grandmother went in to get some food for my uncle, while I was waiting in the car with my grandfather, he catcalled three girl who were walking into the restaurant.
I live in Tokyo, an generally the worst thin that happens is getting your butt touched by some creepy on the subway at rush hour. It isn’t fun, but you learn to wear big heels and crush business men’s feet. Or, they will just open their wallets and ask you how much.
But the most problems you will ever get are from other foreigners. For some reason, they act like complete assholes. It scares a lot of japanese people, too, but I am from New York so when someone says something to me, I am not just going to go down without a fight. I have screamed and one one occasion smacked a man who grabbed my ass while walking by in Shinjuku.
I got out of a live at 10pm and went to grab something to drink from Starbucks, as I had just spent 5 hours at a rock concert getting the crap kicked out of me. I was wearing my usual concert gear and had gotten some rather awful stares, so I was already on edge.
As I walk up to the Starbucks, this foreign guy in a suit comes up and slides his hand along my side and says “hello”. I brush him off and, shaking, go into the store.
The sweet boy at the register gets my drink and compliments my hair, and I felt a little more human rather than a piece of meat.
I go back outside with my coffee and go to walk away and here is this guy, who once again tries to cop a feel. So, I throw my coffee on him and start screaming in English, which causes quite a commotion. The guy bolts, a bunch of Japanese people are staring at me like I have completely lost my shit (and I all truth, I had) and my hands are covered in cold coffee..
I went back into the store. The sweet boy behind the counter saw what happened and he gave me some napkins and got me a new drink, for free.
Sometimes, you really just have to throw something at them to get them to leave you be. I don’t think he will be bothering anyone for a while. I hope everyone stared at him the entire way home as he had to sit in his sticky, wet suit.
I was in the Albertson’s grocery store by myself in the middle of the day when I noticed one employee trailing me. I turned on to another aisle and saw him meet up with other employees and they all began catcalling, making weird little sounds while blatantly staring at me. I was trying to find the items I needed so that I could get out of there, and they began commenting on how I must like it since I was staying there and taking it.
I expressed my frustration on a message board that local people post on, and although there were a surprising number of men who tried to shame me for getting harassed, the response was mostly supportive. I feel that people who do this are just bullies, because this only happens to me when I am by myself.
It’s annoying enough when a man stares at you like he is trying to see through your clothes, but when that man is an uniformed officer, it almost feels worse. Aren’t you supposed to help me feel safe?