She encourages girls to fight back
At GOOD we’ve made a point of calling atention to the dangerous harassment that women often encounter while walking home at night and on public transportation. Last week, this danger reared its ugly head again when supermodel Gigi Hadid was grabbed and picked up by celebrity prankster Vitalii Sediuk in the streets of Milan. Hadid reacted by elbowing the man and aggressively screaming at him as he ran away from the scene.
If Hadid were male, she would have been praised by the media for subduing an attacker or for standing her ground. But as a woman who’s expected to be frail and meek, she was portrayed as a savage for defending herself. Headlines of the event said she “lashed out” and acted “frantically” when she should have been praised for her instinctual assertiveness in the face of danger.
Alternative headline - GOOD FOR HER: Gigi Hadid Reacts In Totally Appropriate Way When Random Man Tries To Lift Her… https://t.co/yzCWS1QI6w— Rachel McGrath (@Rachel McGrath) 1474543986
Hadid took to Twitter to stick up for herself and women everywhere.
GIRLS, prepare yourselves so that, if you ever feel in danger, MUSCLE MEMORY can fight back for you. Thank you all so much for ur support.❤️— Gigi Hadid (@Gigi Hadid) 1474578281
Today, Hadid appeared in the latest of actress-writer Lena Dunham’s Lenny Letters in an article entitled “Gigi Hadid Will Not Accept Street Harassment, and Neither Should You.” In the article, Hadid makes a compelling case for the right of women everywhere to stand up for themselves.
Honestly, I felt I was in danger, and I had every right to react the way I did. If anything, I want girls to see the video and know that they have the right to fight back, too, if put in a similar situation. Practicing self-defense is important so that when you're in the moment, reacting from muscle memory comes more naturally to you than freezing up. Confidence in your own ability to defend yourself comes with educating yourself about it, and is a massive advantage when in an unsafe situation.