So I tweeted about this elevator incident today and I think it’s important to talk about this response I got.
The guy in the elevator was pretty creepy. I didn’t mention this in my tweet, but when he got into the elevator with me, he pressed the button for every single floor on the way up, slowing it down to stare at me even longer and also making me a bit late to my meeting. Rude. Anyway, when I tweeted the incident out, I was thoroughly disgusted with this response.
Nowhere did I mention what I was wearing. Rather, it’s just assumed that I was wearing something revealing. Because obviously, I was hoping that this creepy 30-something year old dude would stare at me today. Because obviously, it’s my job to dress only for other people and not myself.
This is where the problem is. Despite the message that society is giving out, men do have self control. It is not a woman’s job to choose carefully what she wears so that men don’t stare at her. It’s not a woman’s job to put what she wants aside to accommodate a man’s comfort. The fact that there are so many people who believe otherwise is sad, and it’s this mentality that leads to the killings of innocent people.
For your information, sir, I wasn’t dressed in a revealing or slutty outfit. But It shouldn’t matter if I was. I shouldn’t have to dress conservatively in hopes of not getting harassed or (God forbid) attacked. I shouldn’t have to grip my umbrella when I’m stuck in an elevator with a man I don’t know. I shouldn’t have to feel unsafe when I’m going about my everyday business.
Quick disclaimer, I’m absolutely not saying that all men are like this. But for those guys who don’t get the fight against rape culture, let me put this in simple terms for you: Imagine that you got kicked in the crotch at a random time and place, without warning. You can go to file a complaint, maybe try to get an assault charge in, but the only response you’ll get is, “Well, maybe you should’ve worn a cup. On said random day and time. Because you should expect to get kicked in the crotch when walking around unprotected.”
Maybe then will you understand why #YesAllWomen is so very important.