The ‘Paris harasser’ video shows why women fear male violence | Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett

Challenging an entitled man can put you at risk. What happened to Marie Laguerre is what frightens us most

Many women have been in a situation where a man has approached them, only for it to turn uncomfortable when they reject his advances. No doubt I will be accused of generalisation in saying this, so I would advise those who don’t believe me to ask women they know about their experiences of rejecting men.

Male reactions can range from verbal abuse (counterintuitively, “slut” seems to be the insult of choice when a woman declines an offer of sex from a man in the street), to refusing to take no for an answer, harassment, stalking and physical violence. The last of these reactions is the most extreme the one many of us fear most.

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