Last week after attending a Milan fashion show, Gigi Hadid was assaulted by celebrity prankster Vitalii Sediuk. Her reaction—a swift elbow to his face to break free—received mixed responses in the media, from critics of her supposedly “not model behavior” to supporters who defended her every move. In an interview with Lena Dunham for Lenny Letter, the supermodel opened up about the incident, crediting her boxing experience and urging women to learn how to protect themselves.
“Honestly, I felt I was in danger, and I had every right to react the way I did,” she wrote. “If anything, I want girls to see the video and know that they have the right to fight back, too, if put in a similar situation.”
She also said that people “are put in much worse situations every day,” and practicing self-defense can give them confidence in the ability to protect themselves. “I do have that fighter in me,” Gigi added. We never doubted it.