love-hate relationship Cairo

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No Harassment By Gigi Ibrahim

No Harassment By Gigi Ibrahim

My life is like a swing here: major ups and major downs. It is a strong love-hate relationship between me and Cairo. I am getting more and more annoyed by the levels of street harassment. When I came here in September I tended not to notice this and everything seemed so fresh and new. Right now I am incredibly annoyed by that.

I feel like I lost my ability to move around on my own: I cannot really use public transportation since there is no convenient system of public transportation. Metro lines are limited and are highly filled with people and sexual harassers. Once some group of guys were taking videos of me standing in the metro. Well those men were also cowards not to look back when I noticed them and they preferred to pretend that they did nothing and nothing was going on.

At the same time, I can have a great time in Cairo: by the pool in some nice club or having shesha at night in a nice restaurant. I believe I would enjoy this country more if men behaved in a better way and I would not need to restrain myself from going out.

I still cannot figure out how this nation came to such an incredible amount of sexual harassment. And it has nothing to do with religion, as Islam does not tell them to go and yell all these ugly things they say to women on streets. To the contrary Islam encourages a nice treatment of women. How come these men grow up and their mothers never tell them that it is wrong to harass women on the streets? How come other men pass by me as I get harassed and say nothing? What is wrong with you people?

What do you think? Why it happens here and how to make it stop? I became a member of a group trying to prevent sexual harassment, but I honestly don’t think it is possible as the population remains incredibly uneducated.

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About Masha Egupova

I am coming from the small city on the Russian Far East called Vladivostok, but Chinese call it 海參崴 [Hǎishēnwǎi] meaning "Sea Cucumber Cliffs." In my blog I will present the view from and about Vladivostok and my views on what is going on in Russia in general.

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