What’s making news in Minneapolis, reported by the Star Tribune’s team of city reporters. Send news tips to baird.helgeson@startribune.com.

Woman confronts catcallers with camera, wit

Posted by: Matt McKinney Updated: July 21, 2014 - 6:21 PM

A woman has turned a hidden camera on her Minneapolis street harassers, filming men who make sexually suggestive comments about her appearance as she walks downtown. The clips, published on her website, include the confrontations that ensue when she asks the men to explain themselves. One man’s response: “I’m surprised that you’re offended by it.”

Not only offended, she built the website and has begun passing out cards to wolf-whistling men that bluntly tell them to stop.

“The street harassment my friends and I encounter tends to take the form of brief but frustrating interactions: comments made just as men pass by on the street, over so quickly you rarely have a chance to respond,” writes the woman, Lindsey, on her website. She asked that her last name not be printed. “Just as frustrating as the harassment itself is the feeling of powerlessness that comes with not having had a chance to defend yourself or convey how the harassment affects you.”

Her website includes a copy of each card so that other women can print them out and distribute if needed.

The project appears to have begun just recently, with most of the video clips posted this month.

In another encounter Lindsey caught on camera, a man walks past her and says “bitch.” When she turns to ask him what he’s talking about, he tells her that it’s a compliment. In another clip, she confronts a catcaller who, in his defense of his comments, says that “women are put on this Earth to satisfy a man.”

See more of the video clips here.

UPDATE: Lindsey is the same woman who wrote a Craigslist post last year about a specific street harassment. The Star Tribune wrote this story about it.

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