September 5, 2011


Men who want to flirt with women have to realize: Women live in a state of continual vigilance about sexual safety. It’s like having a mild case of hay fever that never goes away. It’s not debilitating. You’re not weak. You’re not afraid. You just suck it up and get on with your life. It’s nothing that’s going to stop you from making discoveries, or climbing mountains, or falling in love. Sometimes you can almost forget about it. It doesn’t mean it’s not there, subtly sucking your energy. You learn to avoid situations that make it worse and seek out conditions that make it better.

If a female stranger is wary around you, it is not because she suspects you are a rapist, or that all men are rapists. It’s because a general level of circumspection is what vigilance requires. Don’t take it personally.

If this frustrates you, try to remember that women are blamed for lapsed vigilance. If a woman does get raped, everyone rushes to see where she let her guard down. Was she drinking? Was she alone? Was she wearing a short skirt? Did she go to a strange man’s room for coffee at 4am?

A woman must be seen to be vigilant as well as be vigilant. If she is deemed insufficiently vigilant, she will be at least partly blamed for any sexual violence that befalls her. If she’s regarded as downright reckless, that “evidence” can be used to completely exonerate her rapist. If it comes down to a he said/she said dispute over whether sex was consensual, as so many rape cases do, the dispute becomes a referendum on whether the woman seems like the sort of reckless person who would have sex with a stranger.

If a woman does go back to a strange man’s hotel room at 4am, even if she only wants a coffee and conversation, she’s more or less given him the power to rape her. No jury is going to believe she went up there for anything but sex. So, don’t be surprised if a stranger reacts badly to that suggestion.

Attention, Space Cadets: Do Not Proposition Women in the Elevator (via petitefeministe)

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September 6, 2011


You are the reason I don’t feel safe walking home at night. You are the reason I keep my keys in my hand, testing their sharp edges. You are the reason I wonder how quickly I can run away. You are the reason I weigh the pros and cons of fighting back. You are the reason I wonder if I would ever be able to get over it if I were raped. You are the reason my drink is always in my hand. You are the reason I will tell a friend to call me when I’m supposed to be home from a date. You are the reason I don’t smile at strangers on the street, because I worry that a simple smile will be interpreted as a come-on. You are the reason I cross my legs and arms and avoid eye contact with strangers on public transportation. You are the reason my headphones are always in my ears, even if I’m not listening to music. You are the reason I have to fake a cell phone conversation. You are the reason I have to make an actual call if I am walking alone.

Anoushka’s "Rant About Street Harassment”

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April 19, 2012


I think I’m going to print out a few of these…

I think I’m going to print out a few of these…

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feminism street harassment rape culture

May 1, 2012


Men who want to flirt with women have to realize: Women live in a state of continual vigilance about sexual safety. It’s like having a mild case of hay fever that never goes away. It’s not debilitating. You’re not weak. You’re not afraid. You just suck it up and get on with your life. It’s nothing that’s going to stop you from making discoveries, or climbing mountains, or falling in love. Sometimes you can almost forget about it. It doesn’t mean it’s not there, subtly sucking your energy. You learn to avoid situations that make it worse and seek out conditions that make it better.

If a female stranger is wary around you, it is not because she suspects you are a rapist, or that all men are rapists. It’s because a general level of circumspection is what vigilance requires. Don’t take it personally.

If this frustrates you, try to remember that women are blamed for lapsed vigilance. If a woman does get raped, everyone rushes to see where she let her guard down. Was she drinking? Was she alone? Was she wearing a short skirt? Did she go to a strange man’s room for coffee at 4am?

A woman must be seen to be vigilant as well as be vigilant. If she is deemed insufficiently vigilant, she will be at least partly blamed for any sexual violence that befalls her. If she’s regarded as downright reckless, that “evidence” can be used to completely exonerate her rapist. If it comes down to a he said/she said dispute over whether sex was consensual, as so many rape cases do, the dispute becomes a referendum on whether the woman seems like the sort of reckless person who would have sex with a stranger.

If a woman does go back to a strange man’s hotel room at 4am, even if she only wants a coffee and conversation, she’s more or less given him the power to rape her. No jury is going to believe she went up there for anything but sex. So, don’t be surprised if a stranger reacts badly to that suggestion.

Attention, Space Cadets: Do Not Proposition Women in the Elevator

I wish I didn’t need to reblog stuff like this. I wish people *got it*. But judging from the ridiculous response to these posts, stuff like this clearly still needs to be repeated. 

(via lavender-labia)

I had a really uncomfortable experience on the streetcar last night, making this depressingly relevant.

(via nessfraserloves)

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rape culture

July 10, 2012


July 11, 2012


Rape jokes reinforce the idea that male identity is neutral and normal, and female identity is marginal and laughable. Terrorizing and marginalizing women is hilarious, and you just can’t take a joke.

Super great (short! very short!) little editorial on the Daniel Tosh thing via NY Mag (via maximumyuks)

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rape culture fuck you rape jokes aren't funny FUCK YOU