Friday, November 20, 2009

Touch Me At Your Own Risk

I heard this morning on the radio about incidents of subway groping going way up, especially in Manhattan and how they expect with the Holiday rush, it's only going to get worse. I did notice the campaign about sexual harassment on the subways and had to shake my head at the fact that not only is the problem getting that bad, but that they have to tell the victims that it's not OK. This is ridiculous. What is wrong with these men? I have made reference to the jostling of bodies and lingering touches on the train in a consensual matter or in fiction. But this happens more often than women are willing to admit and that is the problem. I'm well-aware that during rush hour, there is very little personal space and having grown up in NY, I'm very tolerant of it, but that's no excuse for your hand being in my ass crack.

I caught a lot of heat on the NY Times City Room Blog last year when I said something to the effect that these crazy, sick men prey on women they think or know will be too scared to say anything or too lost in their own worlds to notice. You know how many times I've just stared at someone just to see what will happen and they never see me because they never look up? They have no clue what's going on around them. They make themselves targets. There's no eye contact. So even if someone did "attack" them (rob, grope etc.) they wouldn't be able to identify them! I remember a few years ago sitting across from a woman and man who didn't know one another. The man would slowly inch his hand under his newspaper and rest his fingers on the woman's thigh. I was shocked that she didn't even feel it.

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