On Harassment, Discrimination and Violence Against Women

I was walking to the restroom of a club the other day when some random man grabbed my hand and tried to pull me towards him. Now, having experienced this before, I have mastered the art of getting my hand out of such men’s grips, serving them an ample portion of side eye, and walking away.  Having successfully dodged idiot numero uno, I proceeded to the restroom only to have another idiot plant himself in my way, and pat my waist and stomach like he was some TSA agent performing a security check. It happened so fast and the idiot disappeared into the dance floor just as my shocked self was about to say something. I got to the restroom wishing that a door would magically appear on its walls so that I didn’t have to go back the way I had come from. I legit thought of using the window as my exit after I was done.  And this happened, why!? Because I am a woman and there are men out there who think they can willy-nilly have their way with me.

Right before I made my scary and draining walk to the restroom, I had been having a conversation with my friend about the shootings in Isla Vista.  If you  haven’t heard by now, a 22-year-old man went on a shooting spree killing six people and injuring over a dozen others. He was angry at women for rejecting him, and blamed women for his loneliness, misery and unfulfilled desires. Read more herehere and here.

Our conversation was about the entitlement that men feel to women. Men roam this earth expecting and demanding that all women say yes to them, fulfill their every desire, sway to their every whim and bow at their feet.  Who made you the alpha and omega, men, who!?  Seriously! Rejection happens. It is part of life. Deal with it instead of resorting to verbal and physical violence, and harassment, among others.  Is it really that hard to accept someone’s no!? Is it really difficult for you to understand that someone is not interested in your advances!?

I remember this one time I was at a party. Some guy who I didn’t know, and was not interested in getting to know, decided that the best way to talk to me was by putting his face 0.47 inches from mine. I could literally see all the pores on his facial skin. I told him repeatedly to step back because he was in my personal space. The guy threw what can only be described as a tantrum. He started yelling at me and hurling insults. Then he started saying, “This girl is a witch.” Say what!? All because I told him to clear my personal space. Ala! Clearly, abusing me is the most appropriate way to get me to be interested in his existence. Needless to say, my friends and I exited that party.

Unfortunately, I have countless experiences similar to the ones above, as do all women. A Twitter conversation emerged after the Isla Vista shooting under the hashtag #YesAllWomen.  The conversation is about harassment, discrimination and violence against women. Before you start with the “not all men” defense, I suggest you read the tweets and understand what all women go through EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.  Then come back and let’s figure out how we can put an end to this because violence against women is everybody’s problem.

 

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