Over at The F-word, Laura Woodhouse has responded to a post at the Guardian’s Comment is Free about street harassment, or more particularly to the response it provoked on the Guardian’s own site:
once again the comments section has filled up with comments from arrogant little pricks whose thoughts on the matter can be summed up in one of three ways:
(1) When will these bloody misandrist women stop whinging and get the hell off the net?
(2) Street harassment hardly ever happens and it’s all ironic, harmless fun anyway.
(3) But women love it and ask for it – look, they’ve got boobs!
Laura asked for a simple show of hands from F-word commentors about whether they had experienced street harassment. Most commentors opted to give more detail than that of their various experiences.
So do bookmark it for the next time someone tries to argue that street harassment is not a big deal or doesn’t happen much. Because we know better, and if those naysayers have half a brain and an ounce of intellectual honesty, then after they read that thread they will also know better. It’s all about a perceived macho entitlement to dominate public space, and often an implicit threat of imminent physical harm as well.
If you want to tell your own story of street harassment, I encourage you to go over to the F-word post and add it there. By all means copy it here as well, and/or submit it to Hollaback Oz.
I’d also be interested in examining how the antagonistic comments on posts about street harassment and rape and pay inequality etc are often used as a tool for silencing and shaming feminist opinions and arguments through intimidation i.e. essentially just good old cyberbullying.