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Monday, April 27, 2015

Catcalling: An Intervention Story

The scene: the sidewalk outside a gym, which has a huge window/glass wall so that exercisers can see out, and pedestrians can see in. A couple of women are working out on the cardio machines. A man stands on the sidewalk, catcalling the women.

I walk up, take in the scene, and say, "That's pretty offensive, sir.

"What?" He says.

"That's pretty offensive."

"I'm lookin' at women!" He exclaims -- the implication being that he is doing nothing wrong.

"Well, they may not want to be looked at!" I say.

He walks away grumbling. One of the women mouths "thank you" through the glass. He of course catcalls me (from a safe distance) as I leave.

Amy Jones, LSW, Violence Prevention Program Manager, Thousand Waves Martial Arts and Self-Defense Center, Chicago.

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