So with beautiful timing, not long after I posted The Blame Game, one of my lovely readers sent me something brilliant. The following is an excerpt from Diva magazine, and illustrates my point beautifully. Enjoy!
What effect does the drip-drip of rape-avoidance advice have on those unlucky enough to have been sexually attacked? Internalised and misplaced guilt, maybe? Indeed. Anybody would think the silly girls were getting themselves raped.
As the dark nights draw in, Diva fields unwanted advances from pushy PRs trying to insert their products into our glossy folds. Take True Utility, a company which makes a device for storing bank notes inconspicuously. They note their product’s “importance as a safety item, enabling women on nights out to always have some spare money for a taxi home.” Really? “We received such a huge response we decided to bring it out in a hot pink.” Oh, ok. True Utility offer another contribution to “women’s safety”, in the form of an LED torch keyring. I see a future in which sexual attacks are but a memory, as anti-rape sets containing pink pepper sprays, girly-defence guides and candy-coloured keyrings are shoved with special Christmas force into young girls’ stockings.
Well, I for one am sick of the pressure to buy something simply to feel [safe]. So I’ve taken some rape-prevention advice and done my own list, this time for the fellas. Please show my suggestions to potential sex-attackers by cutting it out, invading a male safe-space (like the gents) and sticking it on the wall. After all, it’s your responsibility they see it. You’re a woman.
Men: Avoid Sex Attacks!
1. Don’t drink too much – alcohol can lead men to make poor decisions (like raping someone).
2. Plan your night – leave out ‘attack’.
3. Carry a deterrent – maybe a picture of a non-mascara’d, non-shaven woman in flat shoes will dampen your ardour, should a night-minx coax you into attacking her.
4. If it seems like you’re following a woman – cross the road. Resist shouting: “Don’t panic – I’m not going to rape you!” This may have the opposite effect. Remember, girls are constantly encouraged to feel intimidated and paranoid, so she may well bolt, inadvertently stimulating your natural predator’s “chase” instinct.
5. Walk with un-confidence – she’s been advised to puff herself out, so why not mince a little to even things up? Adopting a womanly walk – or indeed anything feminine – will make you instantly less threatening.
6. Always use an unlicensed cab – leave the licensed ones free for the many weak, tiny, younger women out there.
7. Just keep your faulty urges under wraps – so we can dance drunkenly home, in safety.