In response to this horror  of an op-ed, Melissa McEwan wrote this.   To which I say, Yes, Melissa, yes!

 I ran a lot as a young teen, ran the mile in junior high and briefly flirted with being on the cross-country team in high school; in any event, I ran.  During the schoolyear, I’d run in the morning.    I stopped running after my sophomore year in high school after a foggy morning experience that still leaves me shaking when I think about it.

We lived in a classic northern California subdivision, wide streets, two car garages, palm trees mixing with live oaks along the sidewalks, etc., etc.  I was running along the sidewalk along the street, probably around 6am.  It was barely light, and foggy.  The fog was brighter than the sky.  As I neared the end of my run, a  pickup truck was coming the other way towards me.  It began to slow.  Shortly after I ran past it stopped then pulled a U turn in the middle of the street and began to follow me slowly about 50 feet behind me.  I had begun hyperawareness after it had slowed, and when it turned around I went into hyperfreak mode, thinking, “shit, shit, shit, shit”.  I was still running at a jog trying to think fast as it continued to follow me.   I saw a turn off ahead, which I knew to be a cul de sac, Sleepy Hollow Court.  Aha, I thought, I’ll turn there and he’ll think I’m going home because it is only a half block long so no one out for a run would otherwise turn there, right?

 So I did, ran up the cul de sac and hid behind a pine tree, half afraid that I’d made “the wrong decision” because I would now be trapped in the cul de sac if followed.  In my hyperfreak mode I never once thought to bang on a door of the dozen houses I passed, it was too early, people were still asleep. I was alone.  Also, I was simultaneously worried about being labeled a hysteric.  Yes, I was completely terrified and yet at the same time worried about embarrassing myself.  I waited, breathing heavy, for over 15 minutes, terrified that if I left too soon, the truck would still be waiting out on the main drive through the subdivision.  Finally, I left, walking, figuring I’d save energy if I saw the truck again and needed to sprint for home.

 I was lucky, the truck was gone.  Who knows what the driver’s intent was, perhaps they were only lost.  I don’t care.

 I never ran alone in the morning again until I was in my 20s, living in Manhattan, and even then, vast portions of the year I would not run in the morning because it was dark out.  Ten fucking years of less exercise because of one scary event.  Ten fucking years of less FREEDOM because of one scary event.

 Do NOT fucking tell women where and when they can run.  We’ve already internalized it.  We’ve already endured the comments on the street, on the trail, wherever we walk or run by.  We’ve already limited our choices to our own comfort level based on experience and the ever present voice of “WARNING, WARNING you could be next.”  We’ve already turned down the ipods to make sure we can hear any footsteps behind us.  We’ve already

 DO NOT fucking victim blame.  Fuck Off Logan Jenkins.  You just have no FUCKING idea what you are talking about.

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