This is going to be a quick one, y’all. I saw this infographic (image below) on Feministing today and it disturbed me, to say the least.
I decided to respond to it because I think it’s doing that thing that often happens in the [white-] feminist movement where sex positivity is thrown around as cover for the misogyny of seemingly progressive people. I’d say the person who wrote this means well by it, but the spokesperson here is Playboy, which as we all know, has a long and profitable history of objectifying women and perpetuating patriarchal standards of beauty. Street harassment affects women who rely on public transportation (so as suburb-dwellers, car-commuters, may be tempted to write it off as “not a problem.”) And it disproportionately affects women of color and LBTQ people (Playboy doesn’t have a sparkling record in those departments, either). So, unlike some of the commenters on Feministing, I don’t buy it. Tainted well. My take:
To read documentations of personal accounts of street harassment, check out the hashtag #YouOKSis on Twitter (warning: this could be triggering, it’s overwhelming to see it happening in real time to so many people). For more info on combating catcalling, visit Hollaback, Stop Telling Women to Smile, or Stop Street Harassment or consider how you can intervene as a bystander when you see it happening.
And if you need a palate cleanser, take a look at what male allies do: