As a good-looking man, it’s no wonder Henry Cavill gets so much attention from the opposite sex but the actor recently claimed that this attention often crosses the line into harassment.
Speaking during an interview with The Sunday Times Cavill spoke about catcalling, a form of street harassment that many women experience on a daily basis, and the “double standards” he believes exist for men and women.
“I do think there’s a bit of a double standard, you know,” Cavill stated.
“I mean, if a girl shouts something like ‘Oi, love, fancy a shag?’ to me as I walk past I do sometimes wonder how she’d feel if a builder said that to her. Although, of course, I wouldn’t feel physically threatened, as she might.”
Cavill’s statement raises two issues. Firstly, harassment is harassment and women should not be harassing men. However the difference is that men do not typically fear for their safety when walking alone — a point acknowledged by Cavill himself. Nor are men’s body parts often called into the equation whereas women often have to deal with comments like “nice breasts” or “nice ass,” which can make them feel intimidated or insecure.
Secondly, it’s not just women who are harassed on the street but also underage girls. According to The Independent, a study conducted across the world by Hollaback charity and Cornell University found that 84 percent of women had been harassed on the street before they reached the age of 17.
Many people didn’t agree with Cavill’s statements and took to Twitter to voice their opinions.
Not a Henry Cavill fan. He's utterly boring but it's sad that a man with the most swoonworthy jaw can say things like that about catcalling
— Sanelisiwe Jantjies (@SasaJantjies) March 14, 2016
Henry Cavill talking is ruining Henry Cavill for me.
— Carly (@MissingMalone) March 15, 2016
— Erin (@thevelvetsun) March 15, 2016
"Henry Cavill says women exhibit 'double standards' with street propositions and catcalling" pic.twitter.com/M34Qktx1Vs
— little arcadia bitch (@marksonbot) March 14, 2016
wow Henry Cavill is such an idiot? And a sexist idiot at that. He actually thinks catcalling is an issue for men? REALLY?
— お風呂 (@lnfloenza) March 15, 2016
However there was also a fair share of people who felt that a statement like this needed to be made from a man’s point of view.
Henry Cavill says he acts at least partly for the money and called out the double standard on catcalling. Can *he* run for president maybe?
— Dan (@Captain_Cy_kun) March 15, 2016
Other comments in support of Cavill include one from Tom Blakeney who wrote, “Finally, someone in the spotlight has said it!” And Peter C. Barnes tweeted, “I think Henry Cavil has a point here #catcalling #sexism.”
And it’s not just men who agree. Jennifer tweeted, “i am in total agreement with Him!! #HenryCavill got it right. Nobody should harass! [sic]”