I am a speedy walker, and will ride your slow ass on the streets until you clear enough space for me to pass by you. In my experience, most guys will have the common sense to just step aside when they feel somebody approaching, but many women will turn back in fright (multiple times), and/ or clutch their bags and ready a weapon. It upsets me when that happens because I’m just trying to walk.
I’m not trying to hurt anybody. But that’s irrelevant to women. Maybe ‘not all guys’ are abusers, but ‘yes all women’ are victims in our patriarchal society. We live in a culture that paints a target onto the backs of every girl brought into this world, and teaches these ladies from a very young age that it is their own fault if they get hit. We don’t tell men to stop assaulting women. We tell women that they ‘have it coming’ if they don’t obey our inadequate rape culture regulations.
All that it takes is a simple observation, like noticing how many of my females friends don’t feel safe running without their cell phones, to remind me that even though the most explicit forms of systematic oppression materialize in the abuse, control, and denial of resources of an entire group of people, the effects run much deeper and shape many aspects of our every day behavior. It’s unfortunate that women are afraid of me, but it’s even worse that I come from a position of power and have done nothing to help dismantle the patriarchy.