Sexism, Sexual Harassment, and Public Transportation

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The emotional well-being of individuals can be greatly affected when reflecting on the topic of sexism with women and sexual harassment. Women are seen by men and society as wanting to exert control over them, either through their feminist ideology or through their sexuality (Lemonaki, Manstead and Maio, 2015). Women are heavily influenced by hostile sexism in social settings which can increase anger, frustration and a decreased sense of comfort for them when it comes to men and public spaces. Emotions are examined as the underlying psychological process that could account for the relation between perception of an intergroup situation and collective action tendencies (Lemonaki, Manstead and Maio, 2015). The overall effects of sexism for women in this sense can further create social competitive intentions between genders which can increase rates of sexual harassment from men.

Nonverbal and verbal expressions pertain to sexism for women on an interpersonal level. Perceptions of power built on the creation of masculine stereotypes are feared to be challenged by feminism or sexuality. Benevolent sexism asserts men’s power through personal affection rather than dominance, and these affectionate behaviors may be insidious because they are not necessarily negative on the surface (Goh & Hall, 2015). This form of sexism can be harmful due to subsequently leading women to conform to the status quo of gender inequality in a more definite matter. One way this was done according to the article What Makes the Subway Safe? By Sarah Holder was when New York City created suffragette cars in 1909 in order to keep women safe from harassment and trafficking. Instead of educating men and creating laws to ban offenders or certain men from joining rides with women or having car services, women had to conform and create women only cars (Holder, 2019). Having women conform opposed to making laws for public safety, leads to harmful behaviors of men.

Gender discrimination, referred to as ambient sexism, obtains collateral damages towards bystanders. Some of these effects include cognitive processes and one’s exposure to sexism (Bradley-Geist, Rivera & Geringer, 2015). The cognitive processes refer to how each gender would react or act on sexism. Compared with men, women’s performance state self-esteem will be more negatively impacted by exposure to ambient benevolent sexism versus a control condition in which no sexism is displayed (Bradley-Geist, Rivera & Geringer, 2015). Experiencing sexism could occur frequently in places of public transportation. Self-esteem of women who experience sexual harassment may be very low, they may show uncomfortableness on subways, and show verbal and non-verbal cues due to the cognitive processes occurring from sexism and harassment.

Since the advances of technology and younger generations being influenced by such, the awareness of sexism and social media’s impact could have positive effects. Because young women are the predominant users of Twitter, identifying effective methods may be valuable for enhancing thriving, both socially and psychologically (Foster, 2015). Furthermore, the use of social media has a broad platform that can spread awareness about sexism, sexual harassment and accusers or provide a control condition that can increase self-esteem and possible, positive outcomes in the prevention of sexual harassment overtime. One way New York City plans on doing this is by creating laws that ban people who are past accusers, raise penalties, record pasted offenses, and recidivist. Using social media can help put out the faces of such offenders, and alert authorities easier without raising suspicion.

This idea reminded me of The novel Cunt by Inga Musico when she talks about going to the store after midnight and having a silent code with another girl in her building that if she didn’t return to call the police. This idea is a form of sexism that has happened by society to control a women’s power and her ideas of safety. She talks about having a self-defense regimen and believes all women should have their own list or steps in order to defend themselves (Muscio, 2018). This idea is similar to sexual harassment on public transportation because some of the measures taken by women are also considered when riding public transportation. Unfortunately sexual harassment in public transportation such as masturbation, violence, and touching are serious crimes that women have to face along with the rest of the issues regarding sexism and women.

A study used a convenience sample of 297 individuals from Union county. The ages ranged from 20 to 76 years old. Participants were randomly approached to take an online survey. The researcher used online survey software to reach the participants needed for the study. The survey consisted of questions with the use of a Likert scale. There were twenty eight questions to be completed from a link given by the researcher. Once the survey had been completed, the researcher recorded the responses. The independent variable is the emotional well-being of the individuals. The dependent variable is the impact of sexual harassment. This study looks at the impact of individual’s emotional well being on sexual harassment. It was hypothesized that the women reported higher in sexism. This study looks at the impact of sexual harassment on an individual’s emotional well-being. It was hypothesized that the women reported higher in sexism, but there was no significant difference overall.

Women who reported higher in sexism also reported higher in their emotional wellbeing on sexual harassment. Sexism for women such as male control, societal rules, and safety precautions, affects cognitive and psychological processes by women in many ways. Sexism disadvantages women through discrimination, sexual harassment, and stereotypes. One way to combat such behaviors is to address the issues, create procedures, support female organizations, and taking responsibility for people’s actions can combat sexism for women. Public transportation, although conveniently runs many risks for violence, and abuse. The actions being taken by the NYC police and MTA to stop such issues without isolating women with sexist outcomes are a great stride for women (Holder, 2019). Stopping sexism and Abuse in public places is one way to help women feel comfortable in our communities, and society.

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Sexism, Sexual Harassment, and Public Transportation. (2021, Feb 23). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/sexism-sexual-harassment-and-public-transportation/

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