Toronto Sun

Friday, July 9, 1999

Wrong to kick men - Women

'Ignore' mouthy teens

By MICHAEL CLEMENT, TORONTO SUN

While it may be more than just annoying for a woman to be hassled by boorish wolf-whistling teens, a swift kick in the gonads is not the answer.

That seemed to sum up the views of many women interviewed yesterday in and around Parkdale about the actions of Corinne Branigan, an actress who has been dubbed Parkdale's Kickin' Vixen.

Branigan, 30, was charged with assaulting an 18-year-old who she claimed was one of seven youths making insulting remarks as she walked on Roncesvalles Ave. on Monday night.

"I have a young daughter and I'm not looking forward to the year when she's going to get this kind of treatment," said store manager Adele Gataveckas, 40.

"But you just don't haul off and kick somebody," she told a reporter in her Queen St. W. and Elm Grove Ave. store.

Liz Liverpool, 32, proprietor of Caribbean Roti at Queen and Bathurst Sts., said you have to be "mature enough to know how to deal with these young people."

Her advice to other women in such situations: "Totally ignore them. If you don't pay attention, they won't bother you."

Merline Kamal said that if the youth's assaults were "just verbal" she had no right to kick. "I wouldn't kick anyone unless I'm physically attacked and have to defend myself," said Kamal, a self-employed 50-year-old.

Other women looked more favourably upon Branigan and what she's accused of doing.

"I say more power to her!" said actress Danielle Potvin, 22. "I live in Parkdale and I experience accosting on a regular basis."

"If every woman kicked the guy who was harassing them, I think it would happen a lot less," she said.

"My initial thought was good for her," said interior designer Brenda Belkin, 40. "(But) in a situation like this, maybe she should have just ignored it."

Copyright© 1999, Canoe Limited Partnership.