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Comedian Jen Kirkman’s Street-Harassment RTs Unmask Horrifying Male Behavior

Photo courtesy Jen Kirkman.

Photo courtesy Jen Kirkman.

Over the weekend, comedian Jen Kirkman was in Melbourne, Australia, when something unfortunate and all too common happened: men on the street commented on how she was dressed.

It wasn’t long before men on Twitter were harassing her about it.

One woman offered some advice:

But Kirkman said that approach hasn’t worked for her:

Then, Kirkman opened the floodgates:

And open they did. The stories women shared ranged from the all-too-common “tell her to smile, then act like she’s bad if she refuses” to multiple incidents demonstrating women’s bodies are presumed public property:

You’d think men in workplaces might treat women — either women they work with, or women who are there to help them — with some sort of professionalism. Not necessarily:

Some women tried to respond to their harassers, but it rarely went well:

Most, if not all, women have experienced this kind of harassment at one time or another. But it doesn’t start when they hit adulthood. It starts much, much earlier:

While many men responded just to harass Kirkman and the women she was retweeing, a few reacted with genuine surprise and concern:

On April 4, the day Kirkman spent focused on retweeting women’s stories, this happened:

Fortunately, it didn’t stay that way:

Kirkman’s new book, I Know What I’m Doing and Other Lies I Tell Myself, is out April 12.

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Bay Area-based journalist, author and a senior editor for Wear Your Voice. Featured in The Guardian, The New Yorker, Wired, Mother Jones, PopMatters, the San Francisco Chronicle and the SF Weekly. View total badassery at her website, or follow her on Twitter.

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