Enough with the victim-blaming

Time and again, I have read stories about women whose dignity has been stolen by way of sexual assault. You would expect that such a heinous crime would be met with outrage and castigation of the perpetrator. After all, this is the 21st century, the century of the learned.

Time and again, I have read stories about women whose dignity has been stolen by way of sexual assault. You would expect that such a heinous crime would be met with outrage and castigation of the perpetrator. After all, this is the 21st century, the century of the learned.

But no. A judge in Italy dismisses the case because the alleged victim didn’t scream. So saying “No! Stop! Enough!” or becoming numb and frozen do not count as lack of consent. In the learned judge’s head, there is a textbook reaction to being faced with the unnerving physical, psychological and emotional torture of being sexually assaulted.

 

I’ve heard that it’s the victim’s fault if she was wearing anything above the knees. Because her indecency rendered the man senseless so in a way he is the victim. This excuse does not account for the fact that countless women have been sexually assaulted even though they were fully covered up.

 

A woman who is sexually assaulted in a home setting should have known better than to visit a man alone. Because apparently when you are alone with a male, even if you are platonic friends, even if sex has never come up in conversation, he should still naturally assume that you want to have sex with him.

 

If you had previously agreed that the point of meeting in a private place is to satisfy each other’s canal needs, then you don’t have the right to change your mind. You have probably been ‘eating’ the guy’s money and he decided to revenge. Based on that assumption (yes assumption), you had it coming.

If she is an adult virgin then she should be happy to know that at least someone finds her desirable. Especially if she is not physically attractive according to a poll taken by detached newsreaders. They can even afford a few tongue-in-cheek jokes about the sexual assault.

If the woman is not a virgin, then well, what exactly is she trying to protect?(The person who made this comment is a husband and a father. I scrolled through his timeline).

And if the victim is too young to have known to take precaution against being sexually assaulted, they blame her mother. Because there in an unwritten rule in our patriarchal society that child-rearing is solely a mother’s responsibility.

So the Ugandan woman whose six-year-old daughter was gang-raped and killed should not have been foolish as to leave her child in a man’s care. It doesn’t matter that the man in question is the woman’s brother.

Of course, there are always a few voices of reason. But their input is drowned by the sea of caution to women to stop “acting foolish” around men. Such comments coming from men give the impression that their species is only full of monsters that are always ready to pounce. This is unfair to the good and upstanding men. Women shouldn’t have to stay alert all the time and live in fear of men.

It’s time to stop empowering perpetrators of sexual assault by making excuses for them. Teach boys and men about consent. Stop blaming victims.

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