A Mexican sportscaster for Fox Sports who was groped by a fan during a live broadcast of a national soccer game released a statement defending herself against those who say she "deserved it."
Maria Fernanda Mora, a Fox Sports Mexico journalist, was reporting live from the Guadalajara stadium after the city’s team won against Toronto last Thursday when a male fan standing behind her grabbed Mora’s "glutes" several times. The video shows her turning around and hitting the harasser with her microphone, yelling at him, "don’t touch me," before the camera pulled away. The scene has gone viral on social media.
Mora released a statement via her Twitter account today defending her reaction. She states "I don’t regret my reaction to the attack in the least bit." She says she has received this type of sexual aggression from strangers while on the job before and that this "happens to thousands of woman every day in an infinite number of public spaces."
The sportscaster added in her communique, "I don’t regret my reaction at all. As women, WE ARE NOT GOING TO DROP THIS and WE WILL NOT BE QUIET" (emphasis original).
Mora says she appreciates the multitude of support she has received since the event took place last week, but is being twice victimized - once by her aggress at the game and later on social media. She says she's "alarmed" about the amount and level of verbal attacks she has received regarding her reaction to the initial sexual attack. "I’m alarmed by the hundreds of commentaries - some accompanied by pornographic pictures - that say ‘I deserved it’, that I’m a ‘whore’, that I will be, or that I deserved to be ‘raped’, that I was ‘looking for it’, and what could I expect from the situation."
People are calling Mora the aggressor via social media for defending herself to which she responds, "The problem is always the aggressor, not us (women)."
The United Nations just released a report last month that revealed a "marked increase" of "cyber-harassment" toward women reporters over the past 15 years.
Unfortunately, Mora is not the first female sports journalist to be taped being sexually harassed on live television. In March Brazilian sportscaster Bruna Dealtry was attacked by a fan who tried to kiss her while reporting live from a soccer game. "I’m a soccer reporter, I’m a woman and I deserve respect," Dealtry later wrote on social media.