October 28, 2014

Walking while female... in New York City.



Via Metafilter, where somebody says:
God so many people who I generally respect or like are trying to pick this apart or go "oh so I'm not supposed to talk to people on the street? Ok" on social media and it just makes me want to delete them all from reality.

68 comments:

Scott said...

Walking while female must be sort of like driving while Black, init.

John Lynch said...

The nice thing about being a bald fat white guy is that no one bothers me. Anonymity is worth something.

Yancey Ward said...

That sort of behavior is just indicative of the Republican's War on Women.

Comparative Disadvantage said...

It's the black/hispanic Republican War on Women. Wait, what?

John Lynch said...

It's not "harassment from people of all backgrounds."

Ahem.

David said...

Since this harassment involved "people of all backgrounds," wasn't it racist to have a majority of the guys be non-white? Seriously.

Yeah, white people do this shit too. Is the video really representative? WTF?

And guys, if you appreciate the way a lady looks, then look at her. Don't leer or drool or wink. Don't stare just look for less time than you might like to. Because no woman, not a single one, is going to respond positively to these kinds of statements.

A beautiful woman is one of nature's blessings. Most already know they are beautiful. This girl surely did. They don't need or want you to point out the obvious.

Good manners is the art of making others feel comfortable. Show good manners. We have forgotten how valuable and important they are.

Or move to a small (non-college) town in the South. Don't see that shit here.

Rick M said...

I'm too kind to say anything to her, but here's what I would think if I saw her walking down the streets of NY: "she is wearing VERY tight clothing because she wants me to look at her"

MadisonMan said...

So every 6 minutes someone talked to her in NYC. And she's surprised? It's almost like she wants to be offended.

My sister says Hi to people she sees walking down the street. Is she verbally harassing them?

I applaud the woman in the video for being able to walk for 10 hours straight though. That's not easy.

MadisonMan said...

I wonder where she went to the bathroom during those ten hours. Presumably some restaurant where she was served food -- but that would cut into the 10 hours, wouldn't it?

RecChief said...

NYC isn't the whole country by the way.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Some pretty serious cultural imperialism going on there. What gives her the right to try to impose her standards of behavior on everyone else?

Maybe it's time you checked your privilege.

Freeman Hunt said...

The world becomes much friendlier with age.

MadisonMan said...

The world becomes much friendlier with age.

This is very true. I hope the young lady in the video comes to appreciate that.

The problem is: The world becomes friendlier and I become less patient and more curmudgeonly!

m stone said...

Transparency comes with age, unless you age very well.

Dale said...

Harrasment?!

HARRASSMENT??!!!

What a pathetic group of losers put this together. they deserve every part of hatred thrown at them the rest of their pathetic lives

MadisonMan said...

BTW -- this video means nothing unless they have a man in tight clothes doing the same thing

Freeman Hunt said...

This is very true. I hope the young lady in the video comes to appreciate that.

I was having a conversation with my husband about this only yesterday. I said that a friendly world was a huge, and as far as I could tell wholly unsung, benefit of aging. People should talk about the benefits of getting older more often.

The problem is: The world becomes friendlier and I become less patient and more curmudgeonly!

Ha!

Joe said...

Every time I see any sort of video taking place on the sidewalks or streets of New York, I find it horribly depressing. It's not the people, it's the surroundings.

tds said...

For the sake of science, they should at least do a parallel run of a flat-chested woman and compare.

Kelly said...

Several years ago the townhouse my daughter lived in was having a new roof put on. Every time she walked outside the guys would make catcalls and kissing noises. I'm afraid I was guilty of sterotyping, picturing big, burly construction men of all backgrounds.

Turns out I was way off. It was Amish young men. Yes, really.

When she told me I laughed so hard I dropped the phone. Her husband went to their foreman about it and they stopped.

Kieth Nissen said...

I missed the part where they explained how the video camera was deployed; some sort of clothing mounted camera and she followed the cameraman/woman for ten hours? It's something that interests me as an observer. I also note that she, lovely creature that she is, is dressed for warm weather; other people are shown wearing coats and long sleeved shirts. That tends to attract attention in addition to her good looks. That said I think the behavior of the men and boys is reprehensible even if the camera bearer is obvious making it seem like an event where the girl's walk is intended to invite attention and comment.

John Lynch said...

I think the point is that if you want to be left alone, you should be able to signal that you want to be left alone. That's communication. The woman in the video is making it very clear she does not want to talk. And she's being ignored, which is disrespect.

Nora Vincent wrote a book about this, among other things. When she was disguised as a man she became invisible.

Day to day feminism is fascinating.

rcocean said...

So saying "Nice" or "Good Morning" to a woman as they race is "sexual Harassment"? And I thought the "Damn" guy with the deep voice was actually funny.

OTOH, Having someone walk along you for five minutes is creepy.

rcocean said...

Anyway, she only has to wait another 10 years, then the 'harassment' will stop for the rest of her life.

Chuck said...

There is no way on earth that the ("progressive") proponents of an 'anti-harassment' campaign would not try to disclaim any racial bias. So OF COURSE they are going to say that it is not just blacks and Latinos who are doing the street-harassment.

I just want to do this same thing, with the same actress and producers, in some other New York cities, like Ithaca, or Westchester, Stony Brook. How about downtown Madison, Wisconsin? Or try it in Highland Park, Illinois. And Birmingham, Michigan. And Chapel Hill, North Carolina. In Salt Lake City, Utah. In Newport Beach and in Palo Alto, California.

Let's not limit it to college-type towns. Try this in small-town America. Petoskey, Michigan. Marshfield, Wisconsin. Dublin, Ohio. Beaufort, South Carolina. Odessa, Texas.

I'd expect that the number of street harassment incidents falls dramatically in direct relation to an increasing number of Republicans in the locality.

What was seen in the video is precisely the conflict one would expect in New York City when liberal, liberated women run into poor urban black and Hispanic males.

Now let's talk about some problem that I might actually care about,

William said...

She definitely got harassed, and some of the harassers were beyond creepy......That said, I think the harassers definitely skew younger, not older, and darker, not paler.....When I was in the service I had a Mexican roommate. When we went out together he used to embarrass me by making overt passes at complete strangers. He got told off a lot of times, but he also got laid a lot. So, if you have a thick skin and don't mind acting like a creep, the technique occasionally works, and isn't that the important thing.

Chuck said...

"Every time I see any sort of video taking place on the sidewalks or streets of New York, I find it horribly depressing. It's not the people, it's the surroundings."

No, it's not the surroundings. It is the people. New York can be a remarkably beautiful city. It is a modern marvel. A center of commerce, culture, and technology the likes of which the world has never before seen.

The lowlifes in this video aren't what made New York City. It is amazing how those people survive at all in a city like New York. By the way they aren't peculiar to New York City, either. That culture can be found just as easily in Detroit, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, St. Louis or Newark.

mishu said...

I've seen this done before but ballsier.

Dale said...

If she can afford a go pro camera and 10 hours in that area, then she can afford to walk in some other area. She did it to herself. What an idiot.

fivewheels said...

I wonder what the solution is supposed to be. Do the SJWs behind this want us to do something to those men? Sounds problematic, and I'd likely be against that philosophically, but it wouldn't affect me because I don't behave that way.

Is it intended to be a lesson in raising our young men better? Who do you suppose raised those catcallers? Do you think it was men? Or was it the people feminists like to call the "true heroes" of society, our single mothers?

fivewheels said...

And yes, in noting the quote from Althouse: I think by the standards of the kind of people who promote videos like these, if saying "Have a nice evening" to a stranger counts as oppressive harassment, then "delete them from reality" counts as a death threat.

roundeye said...

If there is an upside, that poor woman should find out that if she gets 8 years older or gains 30 pounds she will be rendered impervious to such remarks.

And the racial is??

fivewheels said...

One more time, because it's a classic: Area Woman Recalls Days When She Resented Being Hit On

SALEM, OR—Kimberly Jones, 43, vividly remembers the bygone days when she took umbrage at being pursued by aggressive suitors, sources reported Monday. "I was quite the looker back in college—I couldn't even go out for a few drinks with my girlfriends without some guy macking on me," Jones said from the kitchen of her one-bedroom apartment. "That used to really piss me off for some reason I can no longer even begin to fathom. Maybe my memory is starting to go." Jones then gazed longingly into her cup of tea.

Xmas said...

The guy in purple about two thirds of the way into the video ("I just saw $1000...") may actually be an honest-to-goodness pimp. At least, that's what it seemed like to me.

zefal said...

All backgrounds? Me don't think so. Let's see how tight fitting her jeans were. Not an excuse for the behavior but when you are walking through areas with a certain crass, er, class of people, it does make a difference.

obama glaring at female backside

zefal said...

And shouldn't the title be - "10 hours of walking down the street equals two minutes of harassment?"

Annie said...

Perhaps it's more a culture or class thing. If she walked through the classier parts of town, would guys in suits do the same?

A few years ago, we were getting our roof replaced. The crew was mostly Mexican. Some were onthe roof, some on the ground.
I followed my 17 yr old daughter out the front door, as she wanted to go to her friend's house across the street, and felt uncomfortable going thru a work crew. As she went out the door, all heads swiveled up, with big toothy grins on their faces.
Until they noticed Mama standing with her hands on her hips eyeballing them eyeballing her girl. And like a switch was flipped, the smiles disappeared, the heads went down, and they got back to work. All at once. It was comical.


Chuck said...

"If she walked through the classier parts of town, would guys in suits do the same?"

Answer: No. Your initial thought was the correct one; it is a cultural thing.

averagejoe said...

Stuck up bitch. Fat ass too.

Skyler said...

What this proves is that New York City has rude people. Stop the presses!

It also shows that if she doesn't tell rude people to back off that they might take that as encouragement and walk beside her for five minutes.

Feminists seem to think that they should be able to dress to be attractive and yet complain when people notice.

The difference between harassment and flirting is when attention is appreciated, then it is not harrassment. A man can't know if a woman might like his attention until he gets the woman's attention. Some men act this way because sometimes it works.

Skyler said...

More importantly, what does this silly woman wish to do about this? Clearly her intent is not to simply show that some people are rude.

Not one of these men touched her. There was no assault. No law was broken.

She has left the precious confines of a college campus and the illusion of life protected from unpleasantness. You might get tossed out of school for yelling "you're a buffalo" at a girl on a college campus, but in the real world this is called free speech even if rude or incomprehensible.

If she wants to live a life free of attention or unpleasantness, then she should stay in doors and never have contact with other human beings. There is no fundamental human right to never be offended.

Jake said...

Well, in order to get affirmative consent, don't you need to ask? Damned if you do . . .

madAsHell said...

More importantly, what does this silly woman wish to do about this?

At the end of the video, there is a solicitation for donations to Hollaback! Hollaback! is a non-profit dedicated to ending street harassment.

Unfortunately, all my discretionary money is tied up in carbon credits.....otherwise

sean said...

Obviously it's a little disingenuous to claim that street harassment involves "people of all backgrounds."

I remember when we started dating, my wife would always want to cross the street whenever she saw a group of black or Hispanic men ahead, to avoid the harassment. Of course, being male, I could not countenance such cowardice, and insisted that we walk straight through. Of course, a woman accompanied by a man does not generally attract catcalls, because the catcallers are not looking for an actual fight.

There is an immense reservoir of hostility towards black and Hispanic men in big city middle-class young white women, but it can never be expressed in public. (Imagine what the University of Wisconsin would do if a student whose name the administration knew spoke as freely as some of the commenters here.) Occasionally, as in the Clarence Thomas hearings, a politically acceptable outlet arises, and attracts immense participation. But mostly it stays hidden.

tim in vermont said...

I have a friend who has always been beautiful and naturally carries it into her mid fifties. She once commented that she even has to give the ladies a smile and a wink sometimes, it just came with the territory. On the other hand, she is not going to walk alone through NYC either, unfair as that may seem, aggressive men who force themselves on women have managed to survive in the gene pool too.

This is just one more reason I think that liberals in general and feminists in particular do not really believe in evolution, as Popehat says, in any deep way.

tim in vermont said...

"delete them from reality" counts as a death threat.

It's worse it is more like a kind of genocide.

Revenant said...

Ten hours of walking around the most densely-populated city in America and she only got ninety seconds of comments?

Should have gone with the low-cut top.

Shanna said...

Turns out I was way off. It was Amish young men. Yes, really.

When she told me I laughed so hard I dropped the phone.


Ha! I remember one time walking by some guy he turned around and started singing ‘Jungle fever’ which I thought was hysterical.

RecChief said...

looked ot me it had more to do with economic background, but it was only 2 minutes of tape.

dbp said...

By far the most favorited comment was: (It has about three times as many as the next most favorited)

"What's her problem? Clearly they were just trying to talk to her about ethics in videogame journalism.
posted by desjardins at 1:44 PM on October 28 [208 favorites]"

dbp said...

The title of the video is, 10 hours of street harrassment, edited down to two minutes

It could just as honestly be titled, The two minutes I was harassed over the course of a ten hour walk

dbp said...

Not that harassment is okay, just that the problem is maybe being exaggerated a bit.

Brando said...

Can't see the video, but from what the "Holloback" folks complain about it sounds like the incidents range from innocuous ("good morning!") to harassing ("nice butt!") to scary ("I'm going to follow you home and do things to you, and you better not call the cops!").

First, any use of the word "hollaback" is a sign of severe mental degradation. Stop it. It's cheap slum patois and condescending coming from ostensibly educated urbanites. Stop it stop it stop it.

Second, let's brush off the small bait--someone simply saying something to you as you pass by is not an offense, sure you may not feel like making eye contact or saying hello but then again no one is forcing you. Not every guy is threatening rape, just like not every black person wants to mug you. Be vigilant and smart on the streets in any case, but letting a small percentage of thugs make you live in fear is a sad way to live life. And shunning someone who simply says "hello" just makes you a monster.

Harassment on the other hand, yes it's nasty and some guys will do it because they're scum who know it'll get a rise out of you and give them a sense of power as they know it's all they can do to someone they perceive as better than them. Unfortunately there's not much you can do about people like that--shaming them won't stop the sort of person who'd do that, and ignoring them probably won't help. Hopefully their "peers" won't encourage them but in a city there's a certain amount of unpleasantness you can't do anything about.

Scary stuff like threats or stalking? Time to get the pepper spray ready--there are some scary people out there and you never know how far they'll go.

ken in sc said...

She has her youth and a decent figure, both of which will go away soon enough. Otherwise she is not beautiful. As others have noted, she will someday be invisible to men and even to younger female store clerks. She will then be nostalgic for the attention she gets now.

chillblaine said...

If she had a male companion, she wouldn't have heard a peep. And most of the looks would have been side-of-the-eye.

Joe said...

"Good morning"

"Have a nice evening, darling"

Those are now harassment? She better not come out west.

Chuck said...

I am really surprised by the number of posts here suggesting that the comments are a normal part of everyday urban living.

Maybe they are; maybe this sort of interpersonal behavior is expected in certain cultures.

It isn't normal, or accepted, in the culture in which I live. Which is white, Republican, upper middle class. Even in sexually-charged university campuses, where the coeds are dressing a lot more provocatively on game-day Saturdays, and more or less deliberately inviting a lot of sexual innuendo (or worse), there is a feel of "predation" in this video that one would rarely see on a college campus of smart white high-SAT pre-graduate school social climbers.

This is sooooo cultural! It screams, "ghetto life."

mikee said...

I commented on the posted video on reddit.

I noted that several of her accosters were professional touts, trying to get her interested in a tattoo parlor, street vendor stalls, and (possibly) drugs.

And the most interesting interaction was with the apparently mentally deficient man who accompanied her for 5 minutes without another word after his initial greeting to her (verbal sexist macroaggressive patriarchal assault, I mean). He likely either was pleased to have made a new friend who didn't cuss him out, or was walking with her because he knew what a bad area she was in, protecting her (in his own mind).

Anonymous said...

It absolutely does have racial and class overtones on a street level and to pretend it didn't with a disclaimer is disingenuous at best.

To me the point of this vid is not to invite resentment, prissiness, or judgment, but to give guys an idea of what it's like to deal with it all day, every day - how what would be singularly a minor incident becomes a pattern, then an environment that feeds into default feminine reactions and attitudes.

(Similarly, there was a recent post about a teacher who didn't understand his students' attitudes until he shadowed them, lived their life for a day, and could see it from their perspective.)

Brando said...

""Good morning"

"Have a nice evening, darling"

Those are now harassment? She better not come out west."

That's harassment in the world of easily shattered snowflakes. Of course, it's all in the "how"--I can imagine contexts where someone says even innocuous things like that in such a creepy way, like while springing out from behind a dumpster at 3 AM in a bad neighborhood, that would be less than welcome.

But making too much out of harmless (even if unwanted) greetings only makes you look childlike. It also clouds any complaints you may have when you're being genuinely harassed on the streets.

Shanna said...

Of course, it's all in the "how"--I can imagine contexts where someone says even innocuous things like that in such a creepy way

Indeed. Just like there is a difference in a female friend saying 'cute top' and a male colleague staring at your chest while telling you he likes your sweater.

My experiences with this kind of thing walking around dc for years were a mixed bag of mostly harmless comments, funny comments, creepy/mean comments with only one experience that truly scared me.

Char Char Binks said...

Some of those guys were downright rapey, but it's ok because they're black.

Anthony said...

I once asked a very attractive friend of mine what it was like to be that way. Her answer was about what you'd expect: she'd use it to influence people if she could and liked being able to get almost any man she set her sights on. OTOH, she'd often get that kind of creepy attention, it required a lot of work to maintain, etc.

Funny that. Things come with costs and benefits.

For some reason, I feel pretty certain the young lady in the video wouldn't think twice about using her looks to obtain something she desires.

tim in vermont said...

The simple rule to follow before speaking to a woman is to ask yourself if you are physically attractive, if the answer is yes, and you have the attestation of at least three women to the fact, you may say whatever you like.

Otherwise, shut up or be a rapey asshole.

Titus said...

There is a similar video where a single woman in Egypt walks over a bridge. No catcalls but oggling for days.

Titus said...

She's pretty but has a big ass.

Interesting, there doesn't seem to any footage of Wall Street or the business district.

I see this play out daily here.

kiss kiss

CatherineM said...

I am bothered by all of the "she should be grateful" and not be so sensitive remarks here. Most of the time I am in business suits, no cleavage, low heels etc. My reaction to has to do with the way it is said and how vulnerable I am. So most of the time it's an eye roll and other times it's down right creepy. It is never a chipper good morning you look lovely today miss! (Oh thanks) It's a a damn girl, look at that ass! (Eye roll) and when it's followed by lip smacking it is creepy. When you are in an area alone (say a hallway waiting for your elevator) it is scary. I never respond because engagement only makes it worse so many times the "compliment" is followed by "bitch!" Admittedly, I am especially wary because it's nyc and who knows if the guy is nuts, but don't dismiss those who don't like cat calls as unappreciative.

I have had stranger guys be funny too (like friends holding back a guy because he is "in love") and that is appreciated. Not threatening, very silly, I smile, but I still don't engage.

Doesn't make me a stuck up bitch and I won't miss feeling uncomfortable (like some have suggested) in 10 years.

Rae said...
This comment has been removed by the author.