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An Open Letter on Catcalling

Dear Boys Who Catcall,

As you may have noticed, this letter is addressed to boys, and that’s simply because men DON’T catcall young women. To all of you boys who catcall: listen up. Calling me names as I walk by doesn’t get you the attention I think you’re hoping for. What it gets you is no respect, no exchanging of flirtatious comments, no sex. But maybe you’ll get a middle finger in the air or a dirty glare. Is that what you were hoping for?

Calling me a “bitch” as soon as I turn down your advances doesn’t get you anywhere either. It leaves you lonely, bitter, and disappointed. Because I’m certainly no one’s bitch– especially not yours.

Walking after me won’t help your case. Actually, it might lead to me calling for help. So don’t take one more step.

Just think. Please. All I ask is that you use your brain before you yell some crude comments as I’m on my way to the store or to the gym, or to class. Think about how your yelling won’t accomplish anything. Think about how it might affect me. Think about that test I’m about to take, but I might fail if you scare me and make me feel unsafe before I can even get to the classroom. Think about how I might have wanted to open up to my guy friends, but you’ve given me a barrier between me and any male that I have a relationship with. Think about how uncomfortable I feel now walking to my car at night, and how I’ll take my keys out a block before I even get to the parking lot. Think about how your words and your actions scare me: because when I’m alone in the dark and I have no one to run to, my only defense against boys like you is hoping to get past you without having to put up a fight that I know I’m not physically strong enough to win.

Instead of standing on dark corners or in the alleyways. Be the type of man that benefits society. Give the young women around you genuine compliments. Go out of your way to make them feel safe. Tell them that they are beautiful and help them to be strong. Please, be gentlemen. For the sake of our future; teach the young to treat all others with respect so that maybe everyone will finally feel safe and equal.

– The girl who walks by your corner at night


Ashley Hermansen is a dual major in International Studies and Modern Languages & Linguistics. She loves LOVE and dancing and really just wants to help everyone that she can. That's it, read on <3
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