Taxis for Chicks!

20 10 2009

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Men, you’re in luck: It looks like feminism has officially “hit the road.”  AP reports that the little town of Puebla, Mexico, of all places, has enlisted a fleet of 35 hot pink, girls-only taxis for ladies that are fed up with “leering male drivers.”   The fem-tastic taxies come equipped with a beauty kit, a GPS system (cause everyone knows women can’t navigate to save their lives), and an alarm button…. in case of a surprise man-attack, I suppose. 

Some feminists are up in arms because these pink taxis do nothing to actually curb sexual harrassment among male taxi drivers– they only offer women an alternative.  Perhaps we need to deal with the problem of inappropriate cab-drivers first, instead of simply gender stereotyping… wait… did you say these pink taxies come with a beauty kit? Awesome! I wonder if it has eyelash curlers and everything, or just the basics?  Do the female cab drivers gossip with their passengers about men? Cause if not, it’s not much of a “female-oriented taxi” is it?  I digress.

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According to the internet, these lady cabs are not unique to Mexico.  I’m reading about pink taxis in Beirut, Moscow, Dubai… what about America?  The male cabbies here can be as creepy as anywhere else.  I once had to leap out of a cab at a gas station at 2 am and make a run for it after the driver reached back and put his hand on my knee while suggesting that I sit up front with him.  Oh Hell no. 

I think I’m going to start a pink taxi branch in D.C.  We’ll call them the Maxi-Taxis, or the Gab-Cabs.  In addition to a beauty kit and an alarm button, they’ll have tampon dispensers, emergency cell-phone chargers and litters of puppies crawling around the back.  The drivers will make a fortune because the ladies will never get out! 

Why hasn’t anyone thought of this yet?!

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9 responses

20 10 2009
20 10 2009
Geof Boyle

Problem: women have less access to a public service b/c some men can’t control themselves.

Three approaches to this conundrum: economic vs public facilities vs gender equality. I think I may be restating your whole column, but anyway, it’s mostly for my own entertainment.

Economic: if people want to pay for it, it doesn’t break any existing laws, then it’s acceptable. This is kind of the default anyway.

Public facilities/service: presumably, we have separate restrooms either for privacy (which would means separate taxis doesn’t follow), or b/c men can’t control themselves, which leads to…

Gender: which is the root of the arguments for seclusion of women and male relative accompaniment in public. Also “well if she went out dressed like that, she was asking for it”

I want to go with third one here as the real argument against the taxis. Every citizen must be held accountable to the same standards of behavior, including cab drivers. But, its a hassle to call the cops to report a battery b/c some perv touched your knee and press charges so it won’t happen again. So, maybe I’ll go with the first argument and co-ed bathrooms. I’ll behave.

20 10 2009
bros

I can see why some women’s rights (I think that describes them better than ‘feminists’) activists are upset about this because it clearly treats the symptom and not the cause, and that is not a great recipe for fixing society’s ills over the long term and does nothing to address fundamental issues of womens safety

however, this kills two birds with one stone: providing a safer option for the ladies while also creating economic opportunities for women. economic opportunities for women leads to higher earning power in the workforce which contributes to more progressive attitudes towards women which may ultimately reduce some of the sexist and illegal behavior from taxi drivers. women with no power in society are easier victims.

20 10 2009
Liz

In Rio de Janeiro, there are women-only cars on the subway during rush hours. These cars are checked at every stop by transit cops who often come in and forceably remove men from the car. So, while all the other cars are so jam-packed that you can’t move, at least you are smushed up to a nice-looking lady instead of some guy that uses the small space as an excuse to feel you up. I enjoyed it, but others said that there weren’t enough women riding the metro to make it worth it, as it made all the other cars even more packed. Tough call, but in a town where getting pickpocketed in a packed metro car is a regular occurrence, I’m sticking with the lady’s room complete with armored guards.

21 10 2009
graber

“women can’t navigate to save their lives”??? as much as I agree with that, I can’t believe you sell yourself so short… especially because you are so tall.

22 10 2009
Jayne Landry

I think this is a functional business idea. I know that I, for one, would feel more comfortable (safer?) using this type of service, when out of town. My young teenage daughter was recently in a situation where she could have used this form of transpotation. I dont give a damn what a “feminist” (we still use that term?) thinks they do or dont do or what amenities they have. Like it or not, women trust other women more, (think late at night, out of town, inebriated). PS ..Cab service was denied to my 9 month preggers friend in Boston once–driver pulled up, took one look, and burned rubber. Somehow I think the lady cabbie would have picked her up.

22 10 2009
Slab Pie

GAB CABS– DO IT!!

22 10 2009
VJane

I am coming in a little late on this one but I have a question or two. If a male cabby can pass up a 9 month pregnant woman ( I can see his thinking on that) can a pink cabby pass up a man who is trying to flag her down ??? I wonder if the ACLU has weighed in on this one. They never seem to miss a chance to stir the pot.

17 07 2014
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