a woman is always to blame antifeminism boobs butts creepy empathy deficit evil sexy ladies gender swap men who should not ever be with women ever misogyny MRA oppressed men playing the victim reddit sexual harassment the eternal solipsism of the MRA mind

Women who get catcalled are the real sexual harassers, explains Men's Rights Redditor

Woman sexually harassing a group of men with her slutty attire.
Woman sexually harassing a group of men with her slutty attire.

A month or so ago, after an antiques dealer responded to her comment about a piece of furniture by asking her if she and her female friend “ever made out with each other,” Leah Green of The Guardian decided it was time to try a little gender-reversal experiment: she would use hidden cameras to film her to treat unsuspecting men to the same sort of inappropriate sexual remarks that women get treated to every day, using real life examples collected by the @everydaysexism project.

You can see their reactions in the short video she posted on the Guardian’s website; she discusses her motivations more here.

Many of the men, unaccustomed to this sort of harassment, weren’t exactly sure how to react to her comments. When she asked a bartender for a drink and a lap dance, she had to repeat herself several times before he got her point. When she tried the “have you guys ever made out with each other” line on two older men, they couldn’t quite even process the question at first.

Others got angry. When she yelled “oi, get your asses out” at some construction workers – a gender-swapped version of the classic “show us your tits” — one of the affronted men responded with “you can’t talk to us like that.” And that was essentially the point of the video: no one should be talking to anyone like that.

That point seems to have escaped one angry commenter on the Men’s Rights subreddit going by the name of frankie_q, who spewed forth a well-received virtual manifesto arguing that it’s complaints about cat-calling, not the cat-calling itself, that is the bigger problem. And that the biggest problem of all is that women wear clothes that men consider sexy.

Frankie starts by pointing out that none of the men in the video were dressed like Chippendale dancers (or Donald Trump):

[A]ctivists who point out that on average women are cat-called more than men never admit that on average men tend to dress in very conservative and unrevealing attire compared with women: all of the men featured in the video were dressed in bland, functional clothing. …

The harassed men were not flaunting their flesh, their figures, nor even showing ostentatious displays of wealth, strength or influence (which are things that more often attract women to men than vice-versa). Had these men been wearing tight black leather chaps and shirts, Chippendale tuxedos, hotpants over profile-enhancing push-up underpants; if they were parading their waxed and oiled muscles, or if they were letting their £30,000 Patek Philippe timepieces dangle alluringly from beneath their shirt cuffs, it would have been a much more poignant and valid comparison.

So is Frankie suggesting that all women who get harassed literally dress like strippers? Not quite. He’s suggesting that there’s just not that much difference between what stripper and non-stripper women wear.

[E]ven something as ordinary as a skirt reveals acres more flesh than the equivalent male garment. Almost all women’s clothing is designed to enhance their sexual allure and heighten their sexual power, and this is so normalised that we don’t even notice.

And therefore, women who dress the way women usually do are essentially broadcasting their sexuality to the world and bringing sexual harassment – sorry, sexual attention – upon themselves.

Dress is a form of communication. … A prostitute dressed convincingly as a nun or in dusty overalls would fail to attract many clients, not because nobody desires her services, but because she is not communicating her sexual availability. Conversely, men and women who advertise their desire for sexual attention, whether verbally or through their dress, are wilfully miscommunicating if in truth they desire no such thing.

So should women simply cover themselves up from head to toe?

While I would not advocate for the adoption of burqas in the west, they are a stark and extreme example of how things like cat-calling correlate with appearance. Their use is encouraged in the genuinely patriarchal Arab world by women who wish to evade the attention of men, and by men who perceive immodest dress to be a way for a woman to gain power over them, and while I consider the practice backward, these men and women both have valid points backed up by empirically observable outcomes: dress dowdy, be left alone.

But hey, we don’t need to resort to burqas when we already have pantsuits:

A female office worker in a frumpy pant-suit or a woman running an errand in baggy jeans and a hoodie is as invisible as a man dressed the same way.

And women in baggy or “frumpy” attire are never, ever, ever sexually harassed ever, apparently.

The real problem, in Frankie’s mind, is that women use their sexy sex appeal to have sexy sex power over sex-hungry men. (Women are not as interested in sex, you see, and so are less inclined to lose their minds over men in tiny hotpants.) By dressing sexily, women thus gain an unfair and “unchecked sexual power” over men.

Being sexually desired is a form of power. …

If a person has a strong psychological desire for something, be it a man who desires sex, a woman who desires wealth, an ex-smoker who desires nicotine, a recovering junkie who desires heroin or an infected person who desires a cure, someone who is in possession of the desirable thing has an easy way to manipulate the deprived individual.

So women are basically the drug dealers of the drug … in their pants.

[A] smoker who blows cigarette smoke in the face of an ex-smoker is rightly condemned for frustrating them. A pimp who has an abundant supply of drugs can is considered evil for luring addicts to their ruin. …

But the reasoning that accompanies these kinds of moral judgments does a full 180° turn when the scenario involves a man who is being psychologically controlled through his sexuality. He is afforded none of the sympathy given to the other, comparably manipulated individuals, but worse than that, he is considered an aggressor if he so much as looks at that which he is being tempted with (the “male gaze”, “visual harassment”), never mind if he passes comment or escalates the situation with a romantic advance.

So when a guy yells “show us your tits” at a passing woman, this “romantic advance” is really the fault of the woman for having tits in public. She’s the “morally contemptible party” for displaying herself in front of horny men who are not at that very moment having sex. Don’t blow your tits in men’s faces, ladies!

Oh, but apparently my reaction here is an example of anti-male “empathy apartheid.” In Frankie’s world, sexual harassment is merely a kind of “romantic advance”; the real sexual harassment comes from women wearing makeup and clothes that reveal their female figure.

In a world that treated the male experience with the same empathy and concern as western society treats the female experience, when revealing, figure-hugging clothing, makeup, short skirts and push-up bras are worn in the workplace it would be viewed as sexual harassment, and the women who seek to gain influence through such means would be shamed and reprimanded in the same way as would any other kind of psychological manipulator.

That’s right: women should be “shamed and reprimanded” for making (straight) men think dirty thoughts about women.

I’m pretty sure that most straight men can manage the dirty thoughts all by themselves. Maybe men should be reprimanding their own brains for all the filthy scenarios they keep coming up with.

Thanks to Cloudiah and AgainstMensRights for pointing me to this.

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8 years ago

Ya welcome, Claribella! Keep that misandry misandrying.

Bina, love the image of a lukewarm man. I’m guessing they’re tepid at best up there at the moment!

Speaking of which, day I get to Chicago it’s supposed to be 13C/57F. Good thing I want to show off my knitwear anyway. 😛

8 years ago

Funny, the uniform I wore back when I worked at Canadian Tire was not at all flattering, and yet I was often catcalled. I was groped on the bus ride home once, whilst wearing the same uniform. My winter coat is nice, but not at all revealing and yet I’ve been catcalled whilst wearing it. I had another, stinky, ugly winter coat I wore back when I worked painting balloons; I was chased to the bus stop once. I’ve never worn makeup, but when I have dressed nicely? The catcalls were never more frequent than when I wasn’t.

8 years ago

I’d love to think my uniform at the Museum (striped shirt, electric blue knitwear) was sufficiently horrible to put anyone off. It’d be the only thing it had going for it.

Funny thing: this was when striped business shirts were all the rage in the 90s. Co-worker, in her uniform, found herself waiting at a crossing with three dudes in business wear – and all four of ’em had the blue striped shirt happening.

They all four snickered about it.

8 years ago

Alex, I have no idea what Canadian Tire was thinking when they chose that red…. I keep waiting for a Horta to eat one.

8 years ago

it’s complaints about cat-calling, not the cat-calling itself, that is the bigger problem

“You are the real racists” with a new coat of paint, take eleventy billion…

8 years ago

Sort of like all those schools with strict zero-tolerance policies for kids complaining about bullying.

8 years ago

Reblogged this on Life of the Loon and commented:
An awesome piece on catcalling and the MRAs who love it. Funnily enough I get harassed the most when I am distressed or look distressed (aka like a frumpy mess ). Men like that are vipers.

7 years ago

This article was written about a year ago and here I am just now writing a comment for it a year later, lol I’m late. But I came across this on a Google search. Wow. I have to disagree with your opinion. Not too long ago I got catcalled by a guy in his early 30’s, I’m 17 although I look like I’m 15, I was only wearing a big jacket (it was still cold here in NY) and jeans. They weren’t tight fitted jeans either, besides he was walking towards me so there was no way he could see my butt, either way my jacket covered me.
Its not the first time I’ve been harassed while wearing “normal male looking clothes”. So I find the statement false.
I find it absurd that females are blamed for males actions, what one wears shouldnt be an invitation for others to call her out on it. A female shouldn’t be entitled to wearing certain types of clothing simply because a male has no self control. If that’s the case then why are males praised when they can’t sustain themselves from this task, how can they be trusted.
I agree maybe certain attire is suitable for certain places, and this goes both ways male and female etc. What I highly disagree on is the not wearing “slut looking clothing” just so my pals penis here doesn’t get out of control. Or the “its expected to be harassed if you wear exposing clothing” in that case let’s eliminate the easy access for men to enter lingerie shops, strip clubs, porn, beaches etc because people can’t control themselves (sarcasm). I’m not hating on males, I have guy friends who are very respectable. I know some males get more horny and all but let’s not blame what a female decides to do with her own body as an excuse for these people to act like wild animals.

7 years ago

Tania, I admit I’m having a little trouble following your argument, but I don’t think you’re actually disagreeing with David. You do realize the sections justifying catcalling were quotes from somewhere else, right?

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