Monday, 22 January 2018

Sound Advice Is Not Victim Blaming

Three days ago, the cyber version of my local freesheet reported on the sexual assault of a 13 year old girl. As sexual assaults go it was not that serious - try telling that to the judge - there is no suggestion she was raped, and appears to have simply been fondled. As you might suspect, the police are looking into this as a priority. Although details are virtually non-existent, the paper reports this assault took place on a Saturday morning, at 3.50am.

Unsurprisingly, a number of readers have commented on this report, the consensus being what the fuck was a thirteen year old doing out alone at this time of the morning? Nobody blamed the girl for this assault, but the parents, that is a different matter. Would you allow your thirteen year old daughter, or son, out alone at that time of night/day? If you answer yes, then clearly you are equally unfit to be a parent. Yes, the person responsible for whatever happened to this child is first and foremost our as yet unidentified assailant, but are the parents not responsible?

Now transfer this to a woman who is out drinking, perhaps too much, is she not responsible if she gets into a car with a man she doesn’t know or trust? Is she not responsible if she gets drunk out of her mind and wakes up next to a stranger without remembering or claiming not to remember having consented to sex ? Are the police and hospital A&E departments victim blaming when they advise women not to act so? According to the sisterhood they are, but women should not put themselves in that position, and the same applies to men who might just find themselves falsely accused six months or six years down the line in the current insane climate.

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