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to think there's no item of clothing or lack of that puts a woman at risk of sexual assault?

493 replies

countless · 15/05/2011 10:12

i was just listening to 2 women and a man on r4 discussing the upcoming slut march, the name makes me cringe but i get the idea behind it...
the consensus of the 2 women was that women should be aware that what they wear has an effect upon other people that they is out of their control...

the male presenter very wisely didn't comment.

am i alone in thinking this is profoundly depressing? do people still think that it's womens clothing or lack of that encourages sexual assault??

why don't people realise that any woman or girl is at risk from a rapist and that no one is 'asking for it'. which is the message i take from discussions on womens clothing

OP posts:
DontCallMePeanut · 15/05/2011 13:38

I'm going to approach my friends from uni on this one, then try and find out how we can get it backed by the government and rape support helplines. If I could do something to save just one woman from being raped, I'd be happy.

TidyDancer · 15/05/2011 13:40

No, it's not that simple Mamaz0n. To think differently from you is not to blame the victim, but to, well, think differently. I don't blame the victim, and I think differently to you.

Yes, it is about power and control, but it's also about opportunity. And for explanation of the ins and outs of that, I refer you to greenlime's post about the act of rape being conceived before the victim is spotted.

IprivateI · 15/05/2011 13:40

I think if a woman dresses like a tart and goes out it will increase her chances of being groped/raped/molested. Why go out wearing hardly anything? I don't understand this pathetic behaviour - it's nothing to do with freedom, it cheapness and low class attitude to life. A woman can have fun without showing her bum cheeks and boobs. In saying that, I also would like to say, that many of the women who ARE raped are the quiet ones who wouldn't dress provocatively because in all honesty no one would touch those slutty types with a barge pole. Just watch an episode of Snog Marry Avoid.

greenlime · 15/05/2011 13:41

Milly - for a stranger rape - the first thing for a rapist to consider is presumably the environment. ie dark, secluded etc

The woman laden with bags and children is likely to be in a place where there are lots of people and it's not as likely to be dark. Ditto the elderly and disabled and children in general.

MillyR · 15/05/2011 13:41

Greenlime, there are many rapes. Only 8% of them are carried out by strangers. I don't know how many of that 8% happen at night, to a woman walking home alone. It certainly happens a lot on tv programmes, but how about in real life?

I know people who have been raped by strangers. They were stalked and the stranger broke into their houses. I have no idea how the numbers of women being raped at night outside by a stranger compares to accidents on pavements. Do you know?

TidyDancer · 15/05/2011 13:41

Good idea, Peanut. The thing is, it's a shocking stat. Hopefully the percentages alone would be enough to get people's attention.

MillyR · 15/05/2011 13:43

Exactly - secluded seems a good place to rape someone, like indoors.

xstitch · 15/05/2011 13:43

I definitely agree that it is about power and control rather than actual sex. However it is the norm to blame the victim. That is one of the things that has to change. Otherwise society is effectively supporting the rapists in their actions. I suspect that is not really the effect that people want but it is what happens.

It is the 'blame the victim' mentality that actively helps attackers escape justice. It puts the victim down further which really only serves to increase the power that the attacker exerts on the victim, i.e. extends the control and influence beyond the actual attack. As most attackers are known to the victim it is likely they know what they then go through. Yet it continues because it is easier for those who have been lucky enough never been a victim to blame the victim especially as they are least likely to be able to fight back.

PrinceHumperdink · 15/05/2011 13:44

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MillyR · 15/05/2011 13:45

I also can't get over the new claim that elderly and disabled people don't go places unless there are other people around and it is during the day. Seriously?

greenlime · 15/05/2011 13:45

I take the 8% point Milly - but I am referring only to the rapes that are "outside". Although they are small percentage wise, given the huge huge number of rapes, they are still very significant.

MillyR · 15/05/2011 13:47

Greenlime, then how many is it? Because you are reducing it further and further. Can you tell me what percentage of people raped are raped while able bodied, between the ages of 16-65, at night, in a dark, secluded alley while wearing high heeled shoes in a place where many other people are not around?

It is just getting more and more implausible, other than on TV dramas.

xstitch · 15/05/2011 13:48

So the solution is cover up from head to toe, don't speak to anyone ever (then you won't know anyone), constantly lock yourself in a room on your own 24/7.

That's very practical, what a great life I don't think.

countless · 15/05/2011 13:49

oh lord why is it that despite much reasoned argument, concise points, myth busting statistics and personal experiences so many women are doggedly reiterating the same idea that 'provocative clothing' increases the risk of rape?

most of you have conceded at some point that all evidence points to this not being true of the majority of cases but your views don't appear in anyway altered..

OP posts:
4madboys · 15/05/2011 13:51

yes i have read the whole thread and i get you arent saying that women are responsible for being attacked.

but all this talk about taking risks and minimising risks IMPLIES that women could have avoided being raped if they had done something differently, imo/ime it doesnt make any difference, if someone wants to rape you they will do, you may be able to put up a better fight or run faster depending on clothing but ultimately the man in question is generally bigger/stronger and probably faster anyway.

this idea that we as women arent acting 'responsibly' or in our own best interests by wearing certain types of clothing is quite simply appalling and depressing.

PrinceHumperdink · 15/05/2011 13:51

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DontCallMePeanut · 15/05/2011 13:51

applauds countless

xstitch · 15/05/2011 13:54

Because countless it is and always has been easier to blame the victim. Partly the it could never happen to me thought.

Blame the victim who is feeling alone and vulnerable or blame a vicious, violent bully. Many people will take the former option as it is easier. They will even tell you to your face that you deserved it. Cuts like a knife even years later yet ime the person saying it sometimes actually enjoys it. They are joining in in feeling more powerful as they have put down a 'weaker' person than themselves, at least in their eyes. While not as bad as committing rape obviously it is pretty low.

DontCallMePeanut · 15/05/2011 13:56

4madboys... OK, where stranger rape is concerned, I agree with your point to an extent, but some of it falls to common sense. Avoid poorly lit areas, don't walk home alone... things like that. BUT women shouldn't have to think like that.

With acquaintance rape, knowing the warning signs gives women more chances to get said person out of their lives, raise their concerns. etc. But hardly anyone ever comes forward saying "these are potential warning signs that your male friend/colleague is going to sexually assault you". And for that, I think part of the blame goes to the government, for failing to safeguard women.

4madboys · 15/05/2011 14:03

i would like to know what these magic warning signs are that a male may give out!

i knew who attacked me, i had hung out with him and a big bunch of friends for the entire summer holidays, we got on, we had a laugh. we ALWAYS went out as a big group, on this occasion we wandered off, just to look at a lake, but we were still close enough that i could SEE other people, unfortunately the loud music meant they couldnt hear me shout and oncei realised i couldnt stop it happening i just froze (quite common i think) it wasnt dark, i wasnt down an alley, i hadnt been drinking etc etc. how was i to know that going to look at the lake meant he was going to attack me?!!

chibi · 15/05/2011 14:04

does anyone have any tips for avoiding being in a plane crash too?

a dodgy plane may be bound and determined to crash well in advance of actually doing so, so if you happen to be on a crashing plane, strictly speaking it isn't your fault

however, there are probably some things potential passengers can be doing to avoid being on crashing planes, many of which belong to perfectly respectable airlines

can any risk assessors help?

greenlime · 15/05/2011 14:06

chibi - to avoid a plane crash, don't get on a plane.

Anyone getting on a plane ought to accept that there is a chance (however small) of it crashing.

Don't really get your point.

greentown · 15/05/2011 14:08

So, if in stranger rape as some people are claiming that the wearing of sexual alluring clothing does not figure in victim selection, then what are the factors that make the man target a particular woman?

4madboys · 15/05/2011 14:08

chibi xx

its this 'its not your fault... but' if you had done x, y, z differently. do you know how it feels to hear someone say that when you have been raped? that you didnt spot the warning signs?!! there were NONE!! and i wasnt dressed 'provocatively' and i wasnt wearing heels and i did try and fight back, but it was pointless, HE did what HE wanted to. nothing i did, short of having a magic glass to look into the future, would have changed the outcome.

TidyDancer · 15/05/2011 14:08

I'm struggling with your perspective as well, chibi. You're being extreme (I presume intentionally?) in some ways, but I'm not sure where you're going with it....

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