One of the first stories I remember hearing about myself involved the phrase “Yes We Can”, 17 years before Barack Obama would use it as his campaign phrase. I was in my second year of preschool, and one of the little boys had just walked up to me and told me,
“Girls can’t fight.”
I grabbed him by the scruff of the neck, and rubbed his nose in the dirt, chanting,
“Yes we can, yes we can.”
My teacher, having seen the whole thing, just sat and laughed and laughed.
Today is my self-defense class, and I wanted to add a little visual aid into my drills on falling, getting out of bear-hugs, hair-pulls, and wrist-grabs. So I started searching news sources for stories about women fighting off rapists or other attackers: the pickings were few and far between. I don’t believe this is because women don’t fight attackers off, but “if it bleeds it leads” is still a news-law. This is still deeply disturbing because the lack of coverage of women kicking ass gives the impression that women cannot win fights with men.
Here are the best 3 articles I found on women winning fights with attackers:
- Women, Teenager Fight Off Would Be Rapist
- Sioux Falls woman fights off rapist
- Plucky woman fights off two robbers and wins
But YouTube, without editors, proved to be a much richer repository of stories of women winning street fights. Below are my 10 favorite:
Courage is like a muscle.
We strengthen it with use.