The corner of real and world provides uncomfortable situation for students


Written By Josh Croup, Co-Sports Editor

Hey people of Pittsburgh: get over yourselves.

Now that I have your attention, here’s an editorial based mostly on built up emotions and frustrations.

I love this city. Pittsburgh is why I chose to spend four years at Point Park University. The school had its perks, but the city ultimately sold me on the university.

Pittsburgh is beautiful, full of opportunity and one of the most livable cities in America. That’s what I think of when I picture my city in my head. That’s what I think of when I picture my home in my head.

But what if I told you it’s disgusting, cluttered with awful people and part of a major problem in America? That’s not what you think of when you imagine Pittsburgh, is it?

Me either. But if you ask some people on this campus, that’s exactly what they’ll tell you.

Especially Wood St.

No, the city isn’t awful. No, the city isn’t unlivable. No, the city doesn’t have people crawling around every inch of it that are a disgrace to the human race.

It does have several people, mostly men, who think it is okay to call out women on the street. It does have several people, especially on Wood St., who think it is okay to follow women for blocks as they mind their own business.

It’s not okay. It’s disgusting, it’s wrong and it’s pathetic. There’s not one general description of the kind of person that thinks it’s okay to harass people on the street. They’re black, white, tall, short and everything in between.

My friends that have complained about the issue are all women, but this garbage happens to more people than just women or girls on the street.

I’m tired of hearing my friends and seeing posts on Facebook from students at Point Park say they’re scared to walk down Wood St. and around the city because of street harassment.

I’m fed up with overhearing horror stories of my fellow students’ experiences walking past the bus stop at the corner of Third Ave. and Wood St.

I’m frustrated that people are afraid to ride the “T” because, when they do, they are cornered or confronted by creeps who think they’re being sweet when they stare at them, talk dirty to them and try to get to know them. It happens in broad daylight, midnight, dusk and dawn.

What can I do about it other than express my frustrations in a student newspaper? I honestly don’t know.

I’ve talked about street harassment in the past, and the reaction to the topic depends on the listener. Sometimes, the conversation transitions to personal stories and experiences.

Other times, I’m met with comments like, “That’s just how the world is. It’s just part of life.”

Someone also left this comment on a street harassment PSA I shared on YouTube:

“Have you ever been in a street fight? I’d love to be “cat called” if it meant I was never put in harms way. (Getting your feelings hurt does not count as harm.) Build a bridge…”

It was left by a user who has no other content on his or her page, and most likely just made the account to be an internet troll.

But that comment is everything that is wrong with what is on our streets. No, Wood St. isn’t the only street in the city where this is a problem, and the problem exists outside of Pittsburgh. It’s a major problem in America and around the world.

Again, I have no idea what I can do about this, other than use the Globe as a medium to express my frustration.

To anyone who thinks street harassment is something people just have to “deal with,” please back up and check yourself. And no, the victims of street harassment aren’t “asking for it.”

This whole street harassment thing, it’s not okay.

It’s wrong, and it’s making our city a little less livable for people who decided to attend a school in one of America’s “most livable cities.”

The tour guides leave this part about city living out when you make your first visit to the city or to campus.

I don’t have the answers to this problem, and I don’t know if there is an answer. Maybe someone reading this does, and if so, please tell someone your solutions.

Students shouldn’t have to be afraid to walk down Wood St. past the intersection of real and world.