Cat Calling: The Difference Between How Perpetrators Versus Targeted People Experience It

Editor’s Note: Though this video depicts cis women as targets of cat-calling and cis men as victimizers, Everyday Feminism recognizes that people with a wide variety of genders both experience and perpetuate street harassment. Further, while we appreciate the overall intention of this video, one of the people interviewed uses ableist language to describe cat-callers (she references their needing to adhere to an SSRI regimen). Everyday Feminism in no way condones the use of jokes that further marginalize people who live with mental health issues.

For some strange, misogynist reason, there are still people who believe that cat-calling is an acceptable way of engaging with people.

Those who experience street harassment, however, know it to be an extremely invasive, aggressive, and normalized form of sexual assault and a manifestation of rape culture. It turns moving through public spaces into a disturbingly redundant battle for safety and solace.

In this humorous video, W. Kamau Bell juxtaposes interviews with people who experience cat-calling with those who perpetuate it. The victimizers argue that it is a compliment and makes the people they harm feel better about themselves.

Those who are victimized tell a completely different story. Check it out!



Please read the following Everyday Feminism articles to learn more about interrupting street harassment:

W. Kamau Bell is a sociopolitical comedian who has emerged as the post-modern voice of comedy. Kamau is best known for his critically acclaimed, but criminally short-lived FX comedy series, Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell. The New York Times called Kamau “the most promising new talent in political comedy in many years.” Follow him on Twitter at @wkamaubell.