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I’ve been taking BART to work now for the past couple weeks, and I’ve had 3 incidents at the Coliseum BART now. Each time, it’s been two young males (varied races) hanging out together either outside where the buses stop or on the BART platform. Each time, one of them has said something to me as they walked by closely — “Hey sexy” “You’re cute” “Hi beautiful.” This has happened once at 9am and twice at around 6pm. Although they’re “just” saying stuff to me, it makes me highly uncomfortable, especially since there are always two of them, they like to say these things as they pass by me quite closely, and they’re leering at me. It seriously pisses me off, but I don’t want to engage them, so I just stay silent, try to ignore them, and stay away. It really pisses me off! Thinking about getting myself some pepper spray or self defense classes.
I was walking to the liquor store before a court hearing in Downtown Oakland. As I crossed Clay Street, a middle-aged woman called out, “Hey baby! Wanna come upstairs?” She made a sexual gesture with her mouth and gestured to a halfway house for drug users. I looked behind me to see that no other men but me were in the direction in which she was facing. I told her, “Leave me be” and walked away. She followed me, grabbed me by the crotch and told me, “Come on, white boy, I know you’ll like it.” I shover her aside, whereupon SHE screamed for help and I ran quickly to the store, for fear I would be DARVO’d (Deny the Abuse and Reverse Victim and Offender) and taken to jail.
I was aggressively propositioned by a man twice my age at a suburban gas station – he was surrounded by work colleagues who acted like it weren’t no thang.
I walked to the outdoor payphone at a very busy gas station at 8:30 on a Thursday. (Hello, 1999!) The payphone was on the front side of the building, within view of the gas pumps. An SUV was parked next to the car. A dude in the back seat had opened his car door and said, “Hi.” He was late 40s, I’m in my mid-twenties. He said,” How are you?” “Good.” Then aggressively, ” What are you doing?” “Living my Life, Man.” There were 4 other men in the car, dressed to go to work. Their t-shirts indicated they worked for an event company.
I had to go in the store and get more change. I came back out. He had the door closed, watched me walk up to the phone, opened the door and said, “Hey, Hey” I glare over at him. “I’ll pay you.” I started yelling at him, ” Did you just proposition me with prostitution? Shut the FUCK up. I’m going to call the fucking cops, right now. Don’t you DARE talk to me like that. Fuck you.”
He looked me in the eye, then lowered his head, and finally shut the door. None of the other men made eye contact with me, or apologized. I made a point of writing down their license plate & calling the event company.
HollaBack, keep it up!
Just to put this story in context, I am an Asian woman and this happened in broad daylight with a lot of people around. I was walking home alone from a workshop (about street harrassment, no less!!) when I noticed this man barrel through a few other people so that he’s walking in front of everyone else on the sidewalk. He kind of looked back at me and at some other Asian girls walking behind me and looked disdainful and irritated. I thought it was weird but I gave him the benefit of the doubt- maybe he was looking at something else entirely, or that was just how his face looked. After all of us crossed the street, the man paused on the street corner and shouted “Thickass yellow gook bitches!”, presumably at me and the girls walking behind me. All of us kept walking and I checked in with the girls behind me and exchanged a glance with one of them. Thankfully, we were able to keep walking without incident and the girls behind me were mostly bewildered and amused that this happened. I’m still shocked and weirded out, and the irony of this happening literally ten minutes after my sexual harrassment workshop ended is not lost on me. Harrassment can happen everywhere, at any time.
I got on BART by myself on my way back to Berkeley. As I sat down in a nearly empty train, I noticed an older man (at least 50 years old) behind me had leaned up in his seat. I thought it was kind of suspicious, but I didn’t think anything of it until he started saying “excuse me”. He started asking questions about my black hair and my ethnicity, and at first I didn’t think *that* much of it because he almost reminded me of my grandfather and I assumed he was awkward but harmless. He then started making comments on how nice my hair was, and after he tried to initiate conversation with me a couple times (with me ignoring him/facing forward in my seat) he says “excuse me” again and makes a grab for my hair and asks if he can play with it. At that point I got REALLY scared and moved away immediately- I got up to the door of the train and immediately got off at the next stop, then I walked down the station stairs until the train left. I was disgusted for a long time afterwards and irritated that in the moment I didn’t yell at the man or make a scene. I keep going back and thinking about all the things that I could’ve done better but in the end I’m just glad I was able to get out of there safely and get home. It was a nearly empty train and I did what I could in that situation. Still wish I’d been able to snap a picture though!
I was walking to San Leandro Bart in a short dress. I’m 16. A man, of at least 50, leaned out of his car and said “hey baby. I like the way you walk”. I was so gross and I wanted to barf because it’s not okay to hit on random 16 year old girls walking down the street. It’s not okay to try to hit on anyone walking down the street.
I was walking to the bus stop and noticed the man in front of me harassing the woman walking towards us. She ignored him, but I couldn’t. He slowed down and as I passed him he started in on me. I stopped, used my height to my advantage (I was a foot taller than he was), and told him that what he was doing is called street harassment. That’s all it took. He took off. I can only guess that because he was well-dressed (given the area, perhaps a paralegal?) that he felt entitled to treat women on the street that way.
In the last 24 hours, I (male, 26, obese) have been sexually harassed three times within a block of my home.
Last night, about 3:30am, when I went for my walk, I was accosted by a woman who said, “Can I be your little slut tonight?” while reaching for my crotch.
This afternoon, when I was returning from the store, two women in their 40s and 50s addressed me as “boo” and asked me to “give [them] some sugar.”
this evening, while I was writing in my room, a woman came INTO MY ROOM, touched me below the belt, and asked me for money and for my property, as though I were her boyfriend.
I’ve done my fair share of street approaches, and some have fallen flat. This, however, is ridiculous! People like that, and like others I read about on here, give decent consensual street conversation a bad name.