After a creepy couple berated a young teen for her clothing, the internet had a severe word or two for them.
Trigger Warning: This story contains details of victim-blaming, sl*t shaming, and mentions of sexual assault that readers may find disturbing
Two minor girls were shopping at their local Walmart when a man approached one of them and complimented her body. In a TikTok video captured by her friend and then posted to Reddit, viewers have been able to see the fallout of that exchange. The girl supposedly called out the man at which point his partner lost her cool and begin screaming at her. The couple began berating her for wearing a "sl*tty" outfit, claiming that she was a girl and therefore should not walking around wearing shorts. The incident has since gone viral, with many criticizing the man and woman in the video.
“my cousin got catcalled in Walmart today...and it escalated...”— 𝙸𝙻𝙴𝙰𝙽𝙰⁷ ʕ•́ᴥ•̀ʔ (@cIonetrooper) June 11, 2020
whhhhyyy is this white woman defending him i- pic.twitter.com/k52DMiqipy
Though the entire exchange was not captured on video, the moments after it were. The woman is seen holding an aggressive stance and pointing her finger at the two girls. "I will hit you," she threatens. "He would never f*cking lay a hand on any girl." The man agrees and, pointing at the woman, affirms, "She will hit you." He continues to instruct the two girls to walk away. However, the woman continues to rant. She states, "You're a girl. Yes, a girl, not a woman or anything. You showed your *ss, he complimented it. Get the f*ck over it. Don't want someone to compliment it? Don't f*cking say anything!" "Don't wear that..." The man pipes up. "...Sl*tty-*ss f*cking outfit," the woman completes.
The girl's friend was not ready to let the incident go. "Call her a sl*t one more time, she didn't do sh*t," she shouts. "She can wear what she wants! What's wrong with her outfit? You literally look like a crack *ss. Shut the f*ck up." A few seconds pass before she continues, "What is wrong with you? Don't hit on women that are minors, you *sshole!" She wonders out loud what is wrong with people before the girl who was the target of the rant appears on the screen. It seems she is crying. The friend tries to console her as the video cuts off. If no one has experienced shame or humiliation simply because of what they chose to wear, this was a perfect example of what it's like to just be a girl and have a body.
Sl*tshaming is the act of stigmatizing a woman for engaging in behavior or wearing clothes judged to be "promiscuous" or "sexually provocative." For girls, merely having a body and showing skin—in a sexualized fashion or not—is enough to be considered promiscuous. In this manner, young girls are taught to feel embarrassed about their bodies. This is also the foundation of victim-blaming, wherein a woman or girl's clothing is used as evidence to judge their character. Instead of telling women, especially minors, what they should wear, men should be taught to stop viewing women as objects of sex appeal and instead as, you know, people.
Thankfully, folks in the comments section were cognizant of the fact that the man and his partner acted way out of line. One Reddit user pointed out, "So it's okay for your 45-year-old meth head-looking boyfriend to hit on teenagers just 'cause they're wearing shorts, threaten to hit them, and call them sluts. But when they get upset at him for probably saying some shit like, 'Damn you got a fat f*cking *ss, b*tch,' they're sl*ts. Got it." Another added, "Maybe you should be more concerned that your man is creeping on children rather than what the children are wearing." Amen. While no girl should have experienced such an incident, let's hope it serves as a lesson to all adults about how to NOT act around teenage girls (looking at you, Shane Dawson).