Women's Issues

Dudes Of The Internet Mansplain Street Harassment To All Of Us Silly Little Ladies

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mansplaining-street-harassmentMen of the internet are really bothered that women are bothered by street harassment. Not because being harassed fundamentally messes with the quality of a woman’s life, but because women are all just over-reacting. God forbid you make a man analyze his own problematic behavior for five minutes. Nobody wants to do that.

Somehow, dudes of the internet have managed to take a video of a woman being harassed — whose intention it was to show how disconcerting it can be to move through the world as a woman — and make it about them.  And when these men aren’t making the video about themselves, they are ridiculing women for daring to feel some kind of way about a constant barrage of “hellos.” Seriously? When a large group of women are telling you that a certain action is problematic, maybe just shut the fuck up and listen for a minute.

First, there was this unbelievable CNN discussion about the topic – in which a man actually claims he knows more about street harassment than women, because “I’m a guy and I know how we think.” Yes, he knows more about how it feels to be incessantly harassed in the street, because he has been one of the harassers. Is that what he’s trying to say? Here’s the whole ridiculous conversation:


Comedian Amanda Seals tries to explain that many times when men say “hello” in the street they are looking for a way to initiate further conversation, or as she puts it, they perceive a woman responding to their “hello” as an “invitation to now holler at [her].” “The Manual” author Steven Santagati immediately starts shaking his head, to which Seals replies, “I can see you shaking your head, but you are not an expert on this, my brother, because you are not a woman walking in the street.” Santagati replies: “No, but I am more of an expert than you, and I will tell you why. I’m a guy and I know how we think more than you guys will ever know.”

What the hell does that have to do with anything? I wouldn’t expect much more from a man who wrote a dating advice book for women with the subtitle, A true bad boy explains how men think, date, and mate – and how women can come out on top. Insert all of the eyerolls, here.

“I’m a guy and I know why these guys do this. The bottom line is this ladies; you would not care if all these guys were hot. They would be bolstering your self esteem, bolstering your ego — there is nothing more that a woman loves to hear than how pretty she is.” Then he hypothesizes that the men were planted since the video was shot with the intention of going viral. Seals says it doesn’t matter, because it’s actually very accurate. Santagati replies, “I agree. I lived in New York City 15 years. But so what?” He then goes on to make some weird statement about how women constantly NOT harassing men is just as bad as men harassing women because women are not bolstering men’s egos enough. WHAT? Wow. Way to make street harassment about you, dude.

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