Ria Zelada, a journalism major at Cal Poly SLO, shares with us her philosophy on feminism and her ideas to enact change for women in the world.
For countless women and members of the LGBTQ community, street harassment is a sobering truth that is often times both unavoidable and degrading. Street harassment can consist of blatant whistling, explicit cat-calls, or lingering eye contact. These are all actions that extend unsought or undesired attention. Thankfully, the humiliation is on its way to being a thing of the past!
The “Hollaback!” street movement is “a movement to end street harassment powered by a network of local activists around the world.” This network works “together to better understand street harassment, to ignite public conversations, and to develop innovative strategies to ensure equal access to public spaces.”
The “Hollaback!” application provides comfort and a voice to those that are harassed. Here are five reasons why everyone should download and use this app:
1. The application is VERY easy to utilize whenever the situation arises. First, you enter the story and hit the location button so where the harassment occurred is tracked. You have the option to include a picture, details of the incident, and whether it happened to you directly or if you were a witness to the harassment. Also, once you submit your story, you will receive an e-mail requesting the entire incident to be submitted so the Hollaback! website can map it on the local maps.
2. Using “Hollaback!” breaks the silence of street harassment that is often attributed as a women or LGBTQ member’s “price to pay” in society. Furthering this movement’s cause will shift public opinion in a more critical, open-minded direction.
3. The information gathered on the app and website is collected, organized, and then presented to elected officials and policymakers in areas where a lot of street harassment is occurring. Contributing to this movement gives support to a very real problem within our society.
4. Through using the app, a person can spin the harassment into a moment of empowerment by realizing they can take a stance on this issue instead of passively standing by and accepting the injustices.
5. You realize that you are not the only one. On just college campuses alone, 67% of students have experienced harassment. Utilizing this app unites people from all across the nation and is a very powerful reminder that street harassment should not be the norm.
For more information of this application, visit “Hollaback!” in the iTunes store.
As a first-time blogger, it has been quite the learning experience updating and sustaining a blog. The feedback I have been given from my peers has been great in relevance to my content, but I feel like I have barely scratched the surface in terms of providing the information and resources my audience needs to infuse their lives with feminist philosophies. Outside of the classroom, my audience has been engaging me in the conversations that I am bringing up through my blogs. It always makes me over-the-moon happy when I see that some one has either posted a comment or followed me because that means I am touching on topics that make an impact on an individual. The topics that seem to attract readers the most would have to be the controversial issues. In specific for my blog, the post that has gotten the most interest is “The F Word” where I expand upon the negative stigma feminist’s live with when they label themselves so. My photographs and illustrations are high quality and are mindfully taken, which I found really helped garner credibility from my readers because it reinforced the notion of just how seriously I took my blog writing.
For the future, I need to narrow in my topic a bit more and focus on the core elements of feminism that really form the foundation of the movement through history. When I first began writing for this blog, I jumped right in, but I think this is a good time to step back and refocus my posts on topics my audience will not find my haphazardly searching through Google. In my few final posts, I would like to, as I mentioned before, I want to touch on the basic of feminist theory, as well as something very interesting and like a male’s perspective on feminist stereotypes.
Jezebel is one specific website that is my blog’s “role model” of sorts. I really love that Jezebel has content that ranges from celebrity gossip, fashion news, and hard-hitting journalism content. It’s a refreshing news source because you already anticipate that whatever they will be posting, it will be interesting, of the moment, and intriguingly written with sass. That is how I envision my blog to be for my audience when I work out the kinks a bit more!