It’s been awhile since I’ve lived in New York City. But I still remember it: “I wanna fuck you in the ass mmmm ….. Oh yeah well you were ugly anyway!”
“hey baby you’ve got a phat ass… Yeah well FUCK YOU!”
“I’m gonna rape you, bitch.”
“SMILE! Why do you look so mean, baby?”
ahhh the big apple. Or hang out in any major city and your bound to hear it. If you present as female-bodied, that is. Even in my humble little town of Seattle, WA I hear it.
And why?????? Because our female bodies are an extension of masculinity. Being nice, sweet and positively raddddddddiating femininity is what allows the hetero man-ophiles to be men. The more feminine I appear, the more of a man you are. It’s a disheartening trap. Because if I respond with “thank you,” I am seemingly condoning further harassment. If I say, “go fuck yourself,” I inevitably invite a curb stomping upon me.
I came out if a club one night awhile back and a big tall burly man grabbed my arm and said “come home with me.” I told him to fuck off. I leaned back and decked him. Then cut to me running for my life down a dark city street as he calls after me, “I’m gonna rape you then kill you, bitch.”
Patriarchy is upholded when individual men attempt to establish ownership over female-bodied persons. A simple “smile, baby” not only implies ownership, it exerts power over another individual and a group of people. It is essentially pissing on my leg as I walk by.
So I tried doing the same thing as if I were a man. I walked behind a group of young men and said, yeah baby SHAKE that ass!” Hmm. Somehow it didn’t have the same effect as if I had been a man approaching a group of women. The guys looked back at me like I was a psychopath or a stalker. Hmm. Another set if female stereotypes.
I won’t posit to say that I have a solution to street harassment. But what I can say is if another man tries to grab my arm again, he’s gonna get his fucking ass decked. I am not anyone’s territory. Go pee on someone else’s leg.