Elihandra P. Pennsylvania

My thoughts on rape culture (sexual harassment)

A letter by Elihandra Peralta

  My name is Elihandra Peralta . I’m a 16 year old junior who goes to Olney Charter Highschool & I’m from Philadelphia, PA. I will be discussing rape culture (sexual harassment). It’s important to me because women get sexually harassed every day which leads to rape if certain women don’t agree on following the man’s sexual demand. Sexual harassment can affect a woman at her job, school & in public. Even pop music tells women “you know you want it ”because of blurred lines”.

Let me tell you about the things that I’ve experienced that has to do with rape culture (sexual harassment). From the moment my body started get some type of form like getting curves & growing breasts, boys really noticed that & they started being inappropriate like cat-calling me & they would smack my butt out of nowhere & etc. I used to get really pissed off because they thought it was funny & they didn’t have no business putting their hands on me or cat-calling me like I’m some type of animal. I really just hate the fact that grown men teach their young boys that women are just toys & that you can do whatever you want to them because “they ask for it”. One example that I found about harassed women is, “In some situations, a harassed woman risks losing her job or the chance for a promotion if she refuses to give in to the sexual demands of someone in authority (Advocates for Human Rights). This example proves that women get black mailed about losing their job if they don’t do pleasure their boss or coworker.

Harassment doesn’t only happen in an professional environment. For example, “Sexual harassment has a cumulative, demoralizing effect that discourages women from asserting themselves within the outside world, while among men it reinforces stereotypes of women employees as sex objects” (AHR). This example proves that women aren’t safe anywhere. On a day to day basis women cannot even walk down the street without getting cat-called by a guy & feeling insecure or uncomfortable. Even though you haven’t experienced what I have or what other women have, imagine the girl who has been cat-called by committed cat-callers who know how to make women feel objectified when they're wearing a down jacket in February being your daughter. Cat-calling seems to turn into a competitive sport with dedicated practitioners working overtime making women feel uncomfortable. They say things that have to do with their appearance, sexual desirability, or whether they'd look prettier if they smiled.

The topic of rape culture & sexual harassment is important to me because myself as a young woman have experienced sexual harassment on a really inappropriate level. I think everybody should care about this issue because think about it. Would you want your daughter, niece or granddaughter to get raped or sexually harassed? There’s nothing more than sexual harassment that can bring down your self-esteem. Sexual harassment & rape is the most disgusting thing a human can ever do to another human being. This is why I want you Mr. or Mrs. next president to become aware of this issue. 


Elihandra Peralta-Fernandez.