Friday, 14 October 2016

A Friday morning violation

I'm writing this with my hands shaking and in a bit of delayed shock but need to get this out.

I was walking to work this morning, taking the new path down by Little Victories to the waterfront, by the M Shed, and some guy with an SLR and rolling-up-all-night-eyes-slurring-voice-party-clothes starts coming towards me. He's saying 'excuse me excuse me' and I say to him 'no thank you' in a firm voice.

Then he lifts up his camera and takes a photo of me, the flash going off in my face.


I start yelling at him - demanding what the fuck he thought he was doing, that it is a violation to take photos of people without their permission. I just kept yelling and yelling and yelling and he starts to say he did ask and I yelled no you did NOT. And I kept repeating that this was a violation of my space and he needs to delete the photo RIGHT NOW.

Then an awesome woman comes over and starts agreeing with me. Amazing woman - if you are reading this, THANK YOU! Not all heroes wear capes. She joined in my demand that he deleted the photo and then together we watched him get rid of it. You couldn't really see me in the photo just my jacket and the side of my face. But the point was, he should not have taken it and he had no right to keep it.

I wanted to write this down because men*, hear me now, in my rage.

Women are NOT your public property.

You do NOT have the right to shout at us, harass us, take our photos, assault us. We are not yours. Our bodies are our OWN.

When we walk down the street it is NOT an invitation to yell, snap, grope, grab, pinch, demand. We do not belong to you. Our being in public does not mean we are up for grabs. Our image is our own. Our bodies are our own.

I don't get mad often. But when I do, you don't want to be on the other end of it.

*not all men blah blah blah

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