I See What You Did There

[Content Note: Rape culture; sexual harassment; police misconduct.]

So, there's this article by Wendy Ruderman in the New York Times today, about the particular concerns of women, mostly women of color, who are targeted by the NYPD's stop-and-frisk campaign.

I am very glad there is coverage of this issue in the New York Times.


I do notice something, the responsibility for which may be Ruderman's or may be her editor/s', or a combination thereof. I notice the very careful framing that reports women feeling vulnerable, harassed, humiliated, violated; women feeling like something isn't right, like the three women frisked by male police officers ostensibly looking for a male rapist; women feeling that they are "being groped simply for the officer's sexual gratification."

The notion that the women feel that way because they have correctly assessed the situation, because some male police officers are exploiting their positions to molest women, is never entertained, even in passing, even as a wild hypothetical.

The frame is that the cops are only doing their jobs, and, well, hey, it makes some women feel uncomfortable, but officer safety is of the utmost importance when a lady could have a gun shoved down her pants.

The article implicitly treats as inconceivable the notion that there are male cops taking advantage of NYC's invasive stop-and-frisk policy, which has long lacked sufficient oversight or accountability.

In reality, it's inconceivable that there are not.

Shakesville is run as a safe space. First-time commenters: Please read Shakesville's Commenting Policy and Feminism 101 Section before commenting. We also do lots of in-thread moderation, so we ask that everyone read the entirety of any thread before commenting, to ensure compliance with any in-thread moderation. Thank you.

blog comments powered by Disqus