it's really sad i feel the need to rant about this today, the whole thing just makes me kinda blue. but still, rant i must.
i checked facebook today to find todays sponsored link a '1 in 3 rapes happen when the victim has been drinking - know your limits!' ad. this ad annoys me on a number of levels, firstly, the victim blaming level. most people who are raped are raped by people they know, people they *trust*, friends, family, friends of friends. the way the ad presents it, with a story from a girl who went to a club and a guy brought her a load of drinks and followed her home, eventually left her alone but she was worried it could have ended up a whole lot worse, implies that if you let a man buy you drinks, he is likely to follow you home and try to rape you.
now this is difficult too, since there is such a high proportion of men and who believe that there are circumstances in which a woman can be responsible for her own rape, (i am not sure if this is true of the men and children that are raped and abused, but 5% of women and 3% of men "believed that a woman was 'totally responsible' for being raped if she was intoxicated." ) and messages like this can serve to reinforce that opinion.
i kinda want the message to be 'all rapes happen when someone rapes someone else' the act is carried out by the agressor to the victim. the victim is a victim (do i sound like i am stating the obv a bit too much here?) they did not choose to be raped, no one 'asks for it'! rape happens because rapists rape! not because women drink, not because people 'turn gay' in prison, not because men can't control themselves, but because rape is an act of violence. it is a weapon of war, it is not about sex, but control.
alcohol may make rape victims easier to control. it may blurr their memories and lessen the (6%) chance of conviction. it does not make people get raped, it was not their damned fault!
how about 'if you are raped when drunk, no one will believe you and the court system will cross excamine your life, deem you a ho bag and there will be nothing else you can do about it, also, we recently cut funding for rape crisis call centres so good luck getting though, and if you need any councelling you can only have it for 6 months...
and although i understand that it might be easier to blame the victims, it doesn't just happen in this case, there are so many 'you should be more careful' warnings out there, extra security etc, but the fact is crime happens and no matter what you do there are people who will get past your defenses eventually. sitting at home in a locked room covered up doing nothing will not get anyone anywhere. that includes teenagers, who are being stabbed in record numbers, and carrying knives to defend themselves as they reason if you get 5 years for it, at least you are still alive.
people get raped because other people rape them
people get stabbed because other people carry knives, and use them
it's SO simple!
women: know your limits, and push them further every day. (no, i don't mean drink more every day.. gah) don't stay in, if you want to do something, volunteer, campaign, lobby. please don't sit at home all weekend!