Monday, February 26, 2007

Aint just a t-shirt

Shameless, one of my favorite zines and consequently favorite blogs highlights a recent offensive t-shirt and the (and this is a pleasant surprise) swift and appropriate reaction by the t-shirt seller after it was called out.

I've blogged about this a few times before and yet again we see the almost never ending well of sexist projection encountered in the everyday. This isn't the stereotypical street harassment we're talking about here but it's related in the same sense in that street harassment (like the offensive t-shirt) stem from stereotypical gender roles which, in combination with a misogynist alcohol culture, perpetuates a rape culture which we see trying to exert itself in increasingly blatant and unabashed ways. - L

Monday, February 19, 2007

HollaBack PNW in the news!

From the folks at the Spokesman Review. Here and here.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Belltown jerk

1st and Blanchard, I'm walking to my bus stop, and this guy passes me
and starts in with "eeeeeeeey, chiquita!"

I don't have a camera on me, but I give him the evil eye and call him
"pendejo" and keep walking. He yells crap at me until the end of the

This incident is taking up way too much mental space, and it was a
freakin' week ago.

- Mel

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Origins and Evolutions

Hollaback Pacific Northwest is a collaborative project between Luke Lee and November Papaleo. This website is inspired by the original Hollaback which was started in New York City. Papaleo went to New York and Washington D.C. during a course offered by Oregon State University's Women Studies program. Six students spent two weeks participating in the daily operations of non-profit agencies that benefited and supported women and children. After meeting the staff from "The White House Project," Hollaback NYC, Congresswoman Darlene Hooley, and countless others the students were inspired (and encouraged) to participate in activist projects when they returned to Oregon. HollabackPNW became one of those activities.
After proposing a merger between Hollaback Seattle and Hollaback PNW the site began to move beyond Portland and Seattle, including Idaho, Oregon, and Washington in its quest to make the streets safer. It has moved into malls, on campuses, in restaurants ; it has moved pass sexual harassment to include racism, sexism, and classism. Holla has become a site where all stories are welcome and valued.
Holla's primary goal is to call out street harassers, critique sexually aggressive/suggestive/sexist clothing, and to reduce sexual terrorism by providing an anonymous outlet to share stories and tales of support. If you would like to donate to the cause or to the OSU program which inspired it all, send us an experience, or voice your support please email us at
Thank you for Hollar-ing with us,
November and Luke

Saturday, February 03, 2007

"Exhibitionism" my ass

Anyone catch this episode of Dr. Phil?

Thomas has kept a dark and disturbing secret for 25 years. An overpowering obsession has nearly destroyed his life. His compulsion led to him being convicted of felonies and serving a total of 15 years behind bars. Thomas is an exhibitionist who says he has exposed himself to over 50,000 women. His guilt and shame caused him to sever ties with his friends and family, and he is finally ready to reveal his truth. Something agitates Thomas as he shares his story. Find out what. Then, join Dr. Phil and Thomas in the green room as Thomas reveals his past to the woman he says he wants to marry. How does she react to hearing the news? Don't miss the strong warning Dr. Phil has for her.

I'm not a big Dr. Phil fan for too many reasons to post here, but this is one episode I wish i'd seen. Apparantly, this guy has admitted to "flashing" over 50,000 women (in 25 year, that's about 5 a day) in his life and he got some YouTube attention because he tries to take some jabs at Dr. Phil and then walks off the show.

Please. I don't even give this turd any credit for coming on the show and being "honest" with his "problem" because, let's face it, he's not being honest. When you refer to what he's doing as "exhibitionism" and hide behind that sorta gender-neutralish term, then that's almost like calling domestic violence "anger issues." Those are 50,000+ women he's exposed himself to so this has very little to do with him getting his thrills on being some sort of an equal-opportunity exhibitionist. The only exhibiting he does is in showing his belief system about women and gender when he does street/sexually harass women. When a man exposes his genitals to young girls on a school yard, nobody would ever call that an "exhibitionist" act. Why suddenly remove the inherently sexist/stereotypical gender-reinforced aspects of it when it's women involved? - Luke

Next time it's the Louisville Slugger

I was on my way home from the grocery store in Portland Oregon one evening, when I sensed I was being followed. I would whip around every now and then, but could see no one. Still I couldn't shake that eerie feeling. The rain had ceased momentarily so my umbrella was tucked under one arm. I also had a huge fountain soda in one hand and a magazine. My hands were full, but I was one block from my house, so I wasn't too scared.

As I rounded the corner a man approached me from behind. He asked if I knew what time it was. I said no and kept walking. He stayed within two feet of me, and moved to block my path and then in a really creepy voice he asked are you sure? That's when I noticed his arm moving. I looked down and saw that his penis was out of his pants and he was jacking off. I flipped out. My first reaction was to throw my 44 oz soda at him. the lid came off and drenched him in pepsi but he kept going! I yelled at him and called him a nasty mother fucker, but to no avail. I then lunged at him with my umbrella, and he started to run. I chased him down the street but I lost him.

Since it was the THIRD time this has happened to me (although it was the first time I was alone) I was more angry than anything. I ran to my apartment, and grabbed a blunt object from the kitchen (ok, it was an ice cream scooper, but I was in a blind rage). I ran back out to find him. I've never felt so angry. This pervert represented every time I've been put into a situation where a man degraded, scared, stalked, or in any other way harmed me. I didn't get far from my door. Right out in front of my building I noticed a parked car with a figure slouched down in the drivers seat. I ran up to the window. It was him! I took the ice cream scooper and tried to smash his window with it. All that did of course was brake the plastic section off the stainless steel based scooper, and the guy took off. I learned two things from this incident. Get a license plate number no matter how out of it you are, and keep a bat by the door. I'm not taking this shit any more. - via email