GABRIELA Partylist Rep. Arlene Brosas lamented the misogyny on social media against women amidst the growing popularity of cycling during the pandemic.
Brosas said they have noticed the growing number of lewd posts and comments on some Facebook pages and groups on women who are also taking up the sport either as leisure, a form of exercise or necessity due to the limited public transportation due to the pandemic.
The partylist also posted a graphic with the words “Women are not road sceneries” on its Facebook page.
“We are deeply appalled by the celebration and defense of misogyny in some online bike pages and groups and even by a cycling apparel page,” said Brosas. “Women are not sceneries nor eye candies on the road.
“These lewd posts and comments circulating in male-dominated online hubs and cycling communities are clearly indications of the deep-seated sexism and objectification of women in our society that should never be tolerated,” said Brosas.
Brosas also reminded that such acts online as well as on the road are tantamount to sexual harassment.
“They should be reminded that leering and intrusive gaze are forms of street-based sexual harassment and are punishable under Republic Act 11313 or the Safe Spaces Act. Likewise, uploading or sharing other people's photos without consent is also illegal and a form of gender-based online sexual harassment,” said Brosas.
Brosas urged the public to create a healthy environment for women cyclists who, like their male counterparts, are already dealing with safety issues while they are on the road.
“With the limited public transportation available amid the pandemic, we must help create safe spaces for women who have to deal with street harassment aside from road hazards. Now, more than ever, we must work together and challenge the rotten culture that normalizes degradation of women and sexual harassment. This Women's Month, let's amplify our voices against misogyny and continue calling out all attitudes and behavior which reduces us to mere objects of pleasure,” said Brosas.