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Harassment is a frequent problem for runners. I occasionally announce to other men on the trail (because there aren’t as many women & they already know it anyway) that “The guy I just passed is creeping me out.” Today I was fortunate that one of the men near the trail was a uniformed police officer. The Creep said to me, “I’m going to take you in my arms. I’m coming to get you.” So hopefully the officer did something about this.
This person is stalking and harassing me.
We have three words for you: HeartMob, HeartMob, HeartMob! We could not be more excited about our new platform becoming a reality as we are gearing up to launch in just a few weeks. The most exciting news is that we have received a $516,000 grant from the Knight Foundation!!! We could not be more thrilled or grateful for this opportunity to combat online harassment.
Some other awesome news: we have a new intern at HQ! Sophie arrived from the UK a few days ago to help us with launching HeartMob. As a graduate student from Oxford, Sophie is studying the benefits and ramifications of the Internet. We are looking forward to collaborating with her!
Guess what: we are hiring a HeartMob Program Associate HQ! Spread the word to all who are determined to help us fight online harassment.
Here’s what’s up around the globe:
Alicia, the fierce director of Hollaback! Bahamas!, received the Queen’s Young Leaders Award for her outstanding work transforming the lives of others and making a difference in her community. We are so proud of Alicia’s dedication to the movement to end street harassment!
Hollaback! Pittsburgh is having a meet up this week to discuss the future of the movement to end street harassment with its community. It’s awesome to rally the allies and supporters.
Hollaback! Vancouver continues to tear up the press with Transit Tuesdays. They truly are making a difference in their community.
Hollaback! Alberta had a Chalk Walk for Change to raise awareness of street harassment. The photos of their phrases and designs look fantastic!
That’s all for now. Stay tuned…
Holla and Out!
Visiting family in CA and they convinced me to tour Golden Gate park alone, immediately knew it was a bad idea when I got off the bus. As I wandered in, I accidentally made eye contact with a man walking with a group of friends. Sped up and looked straight ahead but he moved over to my side of the path, bent down and got a couple inches from my face to say “How you doing boo” before strutting off with his friends. Wanted to yell at him but he had a whole group and I was alone, and didn’t see many people nearby. Later that day I thought I would walk downtown to get some chocolate and virtually the same thing happened–creepy guy who just looked like he had something to prove makes eye contact a ways away, then approaches, gets right in my ear this time and says in the creepiest voice I can imagine “hey baby” as he walks past. At least that time there were more people around, but he walked by too fast for me to think of a response. Thinking if that same “technique” is used again I might loudly warn everyone to watch out for the “street harasser in [insert clothing here]” and point at him. Definitely a mild experience compared to most but really creeped me out how close they both got to my face.
Back again. Literally like 2 days ago, I was groped by a creeper who made no effort to deny groping me, and motioned for me to KEEP WALKING IN FRONT OF HIM so that he could grope me again! Had to chase him off with pepper spray. I already posted that story though. Today I was on the back of a motorbike taxi and the driver reached around his arm to try and molest me. Screamed on top of my lungs and ran off as soon as he let me. Within 3 days. I’m so exhausted and terrified and feeling dirty and I just really really really hate men right now. And I know it’s not all men and whatever, but for fuck’s sake this is MY body and I can’t believe how many people don’t realize that.
Keep your cool. Don’t let it get to you. Maybe my shorts are too short? Why am I letting this get to me? Is this my fault?
I am walking home today. The sun is glaring down and I am solely focused on crossing the street to my apartment two blocks away. A car whizzes by just as I’m about to reach safety on the other side of the crosswalk. “Let me honk that ass.” The phantom voice exists for only five seconds — full of disregard, degradation, disrespect.
I am disgusted. I immediately tell myself it’s not my fault. But then find myself uncontrollably catching my reflection in windows I pass with shaming thoughts, “Should I not wear these shorts anymore?”
I hate that I’m left with the fall-out of someone else’s contempt for decency. I’m alone in fighting for respect. I don’t have power in this interaction.
The last time this happened was about two weeks prior. I was biking. I hear a whistle from the sidewalk and my anger instinct kicks kick in “Fuck you!” I shout in his direction. His response to me: “Bitch!”
Recounting this interaction to my boyfriend, hoping to receive some comfort, he scorns me for acting with anger. “You’ll get raped standing up for yourself like that.”
I’m at a loss right now. I’m in some hypothetical danger if I do respond; caught in a self-shaming spiral if I don’t respond.
My friend and I were at a bar by campus, playing pool. The table is right by the front windows. There were two men outside that were staring and making kissy faces at us. We ignored them, but they were outside for around 40 minutes.
I’m 16 and I was on bus route 566 going towards Auburn. A man who looked around 35 sat by me, asked invasive questions about my personal life. He then started talking about my feet and asked to see them. Out of shock I let him then quickly put my shoe back on. He took his socks and shoes off, grabbed my shoe off and started rubbing his feet on mine and started moaning despite me saying I felt uncomfortable and trying to pull my feet away. Another man stepped in and he ran off at Bellevue TC
I was walking to work this morning and found a run in my tights. My side of the street was fairly empty so I walked into an isolated area and took off my tights and saw this man (in his late 40s) continue to stare at me as he walked past. He did this multiple times until I asked “what are you staring at?” He stopped his walk, turned to me, and started aggressively gesturing towards me, angry that I had asked him why he was staring. I crossed the avenue and at the following intersection, saw that he was still staring and angrily gesturing and saying things to me, waiting for the light to change so he could accost me at the next intersection. I got so scared that I hailed a cab in the opposite direction of my job and ducked down in the seat until I arrived at my office and ran inside. This is my regular walking path to work and I am terrified of running into him or him following me.
Was being touristy and taking a beautiful sunset pic (thoughts – our world is so beautiful!) When some guy touch my ass. Went after him with threats of police but he just laughed. Finally took out pepper spray and threatened him until he crossed the street. Wish I could’ve taken a pic to report him but I guess girls just walk with a guy at night. Ugh. Thank god I had my spray.