Women sometimes complain about men who expose themselves; we all know that. But it was the other way round when Turkish men complained that a particular woman’s clothing was “improper”. Apparently the woman in question was wearing a lightweight outfit like a nightdress, which blew up in the wind.
One can of course sympathise with the men for being exposed to such lewd and wanton behaviour and one can only guess at what “improper” thoughts may have strayed into their minds at those moments. Nevertheless we have no doubts that they resisted such impure thoughts, even as they looked.
The women however saw it differently and protested, as they marched across the iconic Galata Bridge, chanting slogans.
“It’s not exhibitionism, it’s male abuse!” and “State, take your hands off my body!” they cried.
(One wonders in the passing if male exhibitionists in other countries may not say the same thing: “It’s not exhibitionism, it’s female abuse.”)
Nevertheless rows of bemused fishermen watched as the women marched by – many of them wearing strappy tops, flimsy sun-dresses with plunging necklines, or shorts – as they sang songs and carried banners calling for the law on exhibitionism to be overturned.
No doubt the men were suitably disgusted, as they watched. Indeed their disapproval was vindicated when a judge upheld their complaints and gave the woman a five-month suspended prison sentence for exhibitionism.