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-start rant- Since last week, I’ve had a rage building up inside me pertaining to how men speak to and address women. This anger is nothing new to me, but it started up again when I was in the emergency room and a random man started saying to me “Hey baby, how’s it going? Don’t hide from me sweetheart.” Me, in hospital gowns, getting hit on while I’m amidst a crisis.
So today, that rage escaped. A random man who got off the bus says to me “Hey sexy” and I tell him “Please don’t call me that.” He responds with “Why? You ARE sexy.” I explain to him how I don’t find that a compliment (because I feel like I’m being sexualized by a complete stranger) and he goes on to say “Whatever, I’ll lick your p****” and proceeds to walk away.
That right there crossed a line. I engaged in a heated discussion with him, trying to break through his ignorance by emphasisng that one should not speak to a person in such a manner, it’s rude and disrespectful. He tries the “well I’m a guy and I’m attracted to women” explanation, as if this was an excuse for the disrespectful comment he made to me.
It’s the blatant sexual harassment that seems to be so normalized in masculine culture that enrages me to my very core. Has no one told these men that it’s NOT OKAY to speak to another person in such a manner? And why don’t they see to care? Has no one attempted to free them of this ignorant mentality that being a straight man somehow gives them leeway to speaking to women however they please?
I know personally, I’d like for anyone to speak to me like a PERSON, as two human beings engaging in conversation. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a prude who’s opposed to flirting and whatnot. It’s natural for people to be attracted to people. But the manner in which some men approach the situation, the mentality that “I’m a man so I’m going to say what I please to this attractive female” is the problem here. I hold the opinion that masculine culture is limiting and toxic, and these behaviors and views must have been taught, and since no one seems to be challenging them, they continue.
I probably sound like some kind of angry feminist, but really I’m just a person who’s tried of being harassed and disrespected by random men because I happen to be born into a female body, and I wish there was an effective manner in raising awareness to this issue. -end rant-
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