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let's blame the rape victim

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  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I kind of thought so too tbh. Frankly I thought it would be easy to regret going on a night out and waking up in a doorway with vomit in your hair.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Is regret what someone should be feeling after being raped? That doesn't feel right at all. It feels like the victim is being asked to take some responsibility for the rape.
    The thing is, after rape, that's exactly what you do. In my experience, feelings of guilt, responsibility and blame are all to common for rape victims. This add antagonises victims, validates those awful feelings and makes the police seem less accessible. The add may have well of said 'I told you so'.
    Fiend_85 wrote: »
    I'm with you on that. But how would you change the phrasing?
    Stay safe. Thats all it needed to say
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Fiend_85 wrote: »
    I kind of thought so too tbh. Frankly I thought it would be easy to regret going on a night out and waking up in a doorway with vomit in your hair.

    I also would have thought it was patently obvious it was a bad idea and pretty uncontroversial.

    The regret isn't about getting raped as such, it's about putting yourself in a position where you could easily have been. Personally, I find it easier to live with bad things that happen that I know I've done everything reasonably possible to prevent rather than things I was sailing close to the wind on.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    smaug wrote: »
    Stay safe. Thats all it needed to say

    You'd think. But culturally the uk is on a course to drink far too fucking much and assuming you should be fine.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    smaug wrote: »
    Stay safe. Thats all it needed to say

    In terms of effectiveness, I would think that would be about on par with a speeding campaign that says 'don't drive too fast'.

    They are not aiming this at victims, they are aiming at potential victims. The message needs to be something which makes them stop and think.
  • Indrid ColdIndrid Cold Warming up? Posts: 16,688
    I think I'm coming around to Clementine's way of thinking on this one. Clearly, you need to take responsibility for yourself and your own safety, but using the term 'regret' doesn't sit right. Is regret what someone should be feeling after being raped? That doesn't feel right at all. It feels like the victim is being asked to take some responsibility for the rape.
    Again: Unless I don't remember correctly, the word "regret" was used in <phrase 1> of a "<phrase 1> or get raped" construct. It wasn't part of getting raped unless you misread it.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I don't think anyone's argued that people don't have responsibilities for their own safety and well-being. That is completely uncontroversial. And if that was the message in its totality then I can't imagine anyone taking issue with it. But it's not all the campaign was saying: it ties drunkenness and rape together with the word 'regret'. And that's taking a step further than just saying "don't make yourself vulnerable by getting absolutely plastered".

    It's a tricky one and I'm wrestling with ambivalence. I completely empathise where ShyBoy and others are coming from when they say there are elements in this debate who demand special dispensation for it. And to a large extent I agree that the emotion does need to take a back seat role if you're planning the most effective campaign. It just feels that tacit in the campaign being run was the notion a victim takes part responsibility for the rape. And that doesn't sit right with me.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Again: Unless I don't remember correctly, the word "regret" was used in <phrase 1> of a "<phrase 1> or get raped" construct. It wasn't part of getting raped unless you misread it.

    I'd buy that argument if I was alone in reading it that way. But clearly I'm not. And clearly there were enough people reading it that way to cause the campaign to be pulled. Now I accept that might be a noisy minority, but a top-drawer campaign wouldn't suffer from that ambiguity.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kaff wrote: »
    In terms of effectiveness, I would think that would be about on par with a speeding campaign that says 'don't drive too fast'.

    They are not aiming this at victims, they are aiming at potential victims. The message needs to be something which makes them stop and think.

    I was thinking of similar pictures with stay safe. More than enough is said in the pictures. And bear in mind that some of all potential victims will eventually become victims. It's all feeding into the psyche- its short sighted.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I also would have thought it was patently obvious it was a bad idea and pretty uncontroversial.

    The regret isn't about getting raped as such, it's about putting yourself in a position where you could easily have been. Personally, I find it easier to live with bad things that happen that I know I've done everything reasonably possible to prevent rather than things I was sailing close to the wind on.

    Which again validates the feeling a lot of victims feel; self blame. The big 'what if' question can be attached to a range of scenarios in which rape or sexual assault happen but I think none of those are helpful. Ultimately the responability lies with the perpetrator.

    Agree with Cpt Coathanger that the campaign was just too ambiguous and that is why it was pulled. Being drunk and/or having a good time is not an invitation to rape someone.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    No, but getting very very drunk is putting yourself at risk.

    You appear to be failing to separate the concept of responsibility to manage the risks you expose yourself to with fault.

    Going out and getting hammered doesn't mean it's your fault that you got raped, but it does mean that you didn't take reasonable precautions to look after yourself. Rape is the emotive topic, but fortunately the scenario that WhoWhere described is the more likely one, or the even more likely ending up in A&E with some entirely preventable injury.

    The latter are the 'safe' topics, the ones that are less likely to really make peoples spines shudder and skin prickle. They're the ones that are likely to be more 'popular' on campaigns, but they're not the ones that are really going to get the message across.

    Sadly this campaign has been pulled, and it's been pulled not because it was wrong - find me something in the statement that suggests that and I'll maybe back down, but because of the complaints it's got.

    Now, I'd happily piss of some of the whingers, and I'd happily continue to try and get the message across that rape is rape, and always wrong, and never the womans fault and have to run a separate campaign to do that if we finally managed to batter some sense into the morons who insist on going out and getting too drunk to look after themselves.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Going out and getting hammered doesn't mean it's your fault that you got raped, but it does mean that you didn't take reasonable precautions to look after yourself.

    But there is still an element of blame in that statement. I think people can take all the precautions they want but ultimately the perpetrator makes the defining choice to rape another person.

    In a public campaign, I find it damaging and unhelpful to concentrate on the behaviour of the victim as if it is something that 1) Needs to be policed and modified and 2) infers that the victim could have somehow prevented it.

    I am all for personal responsability and drinking responsibly but a campaign about rape is really the wrong place to do it. If they want to concentrate on drinking behaviours then they should produce a seperate campaign and not make a shifty and tenuous link to potential victims of rape.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    If they want to concentrate on drinking behaviours then they should produce a seperate campaign and not make a shifty and tenuous link to potential victims of rape.

    In what way is the link between being completely battered and getting raped tenuous?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    In what way is the link between being completely battered and getting raped tenuous?

    I understand that being very drunk makes a person more vulnerable but the link is tenuous because the definition of 'vulnerability' is pretty extensive and not limited to being drunk. Next we'll have a campaign that calls for women to be chaperoned when out and about because let's face it; being alone makes a person all the more vulnerable. It isn't the completely normal, risk-taking human behaviour (such as getting drunk) of potential victims that needs to be monitored or assessed. It's the attitudes and beliefs of rapists that needs to be held to account and challenged.

    Yellow- I liked that vid, just seen it.
  • Indrid ColdIndrid Cold Warming up? Posts: 16,688
    Suppose that while I walk on a crossing, a car almost runs me over. Angry, I shout at the driver some words that there's no reason to type here. Hearing that, the driver stops the car, comes out and starts battering me with his fists so that several of my bones break.

    Is it my fault I got beaten up? No. Would it have happened if I hadn't shouted? No.
    Would you say that I have an "element of blame" for getting battered? If I do, it's irrelevant to whether I should have shouted or not. And it still doesn't make it my fault.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Suppose that while I walk on a crossing, a car almost runs me over. Angry, I shout at the driver some words that there's no reason to type here. Hearing that, the driver stops the car, comes out and starts battering me with his fists so that several of my bones break.

    Is it my fault I got beaten up? No. Would it have happened if I hadn't shouted? No.
    Would you say that I have an "element of blame" for getting battered? If I do, it's irrelevant to whether I should have shouted or not. And it still doesn't make it my fault.

    Well, you provoked him. The responsability still lies with him because he is the one that has offended. But getting drunk is not provocation to rape. There is no provocation for rape.
  • Indrid ColdIndrid Cold Warming up? Posts: 16,688
    Well, you provoked him.
    I was about to edit the post to clarify my point, but anyway.
    The point isn't whether I provoked him. The point is that I made a decision which was one of the many necessary factors that brought about that result.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    In a public campaign, I find it damaging and unhelpful to concentrate on the behaviour of the victim as if it is something that 1) Needs to be policed and modified and 2) infers that the victim could have somehow prevented it.

    But sometimes the victims COULD have prevented it! Or at least reduced their risk. That's the whole point of the campaign!

    Just because it's true that no rape is ever the victim's fault, and nothing excuses the behaviour of the rapist doesn't mean it's not also true that if the victim were not drunk, they perhaps would not have made decisions that led them into a situation where it was easier for someone to rape them. It's not about placing blame, it's about stopping people from making themselves vulnerable in the first place.

    The only problem I can see with the campaign is wording, but at the same time, working in an editorial department I sympathise, because I know how easy it is for someone to turn your words into a message which is quite far removed from the way you intended it to be perceived.

    Saying 'if you are drunk you are more likely to get raped' is NOT the same thing as saying 'if you are drunk it's your fault you got raped'.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I was about to edit the post to clarify my point, but anyway.
    The point isn't whether I provoked him. The point is that I made a decision which was one of the many necessary factors that brought about that result.

    I still fail to see the comparison. Being drunk isn't a necessary factor to being raped and I think it's ever so slightly to suggest that it in anyway 'brought about' the 'result'.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Kaff-

    The only person who can prevent rape is the rapist. Drinking less MAY make you less vulnerable and MAY reduce the risk but I find the campaign's focus on the completely normal, social behaviour of the victim unhelpful.

    To suggest that the victim could have in any way prevented themselves being raped is damaging and irresponsible not only to people that have already been raped but also to victims coming forward and reporting it.

    I don't think the wording has been twisted. It was a clumsy, extremely poor attempt that lumbered the EXACT same message to both victims and perpetrators. And personally I'd prefer the message that 'Drinking makes you more vulnerable' because saying 'if you are drunk you are more likely to get raped' still perpetuates the idea of blame. The majority of people drink excessively at some point in their lives but people are free to take those risks.
  • Indrid ColdIndrid Cold Warming up? Posts: 16,688
    I still fail to see the comparison. Being drunk isn't a necessary factor to being raped and I think it's ever so slightly to suggest that it in anyway 'brought about' the 'result'.
    Don't get me wrong, but it seems you get hung up on words. Shouting isn't a necessary factor to getting beaten up either, but it was a necessary factor for this instance of getting beaten up.
    A woman who got raped when she was off her head might not have been raped if she hadn't been drinking, or if she'd gone somewhere else or if she had been a few minutes late getting there. All these are necessary factors for that specific outcome on that specific occasion, and all of these were her own decisions. One of them missing, whichever, no rape happens. They only "brought about" the result in this meaning of the phrase.
    It's still not her fault it happened but at it still wouldn't have otherwise.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    It's still not her fault it happened but at it still wouldn't have otherwise.

    But there's absolutely no way of knowing that for certain so it seems pointless to dwell on it.
  • Indrid ColdIndrid Cold Warming up? Posts: 16,688
    But there's absolutely no way of knowing that for certain so it seems pointless to dwell on it.
    OK, so let's stop telling kids not to talk to strangers too. After all, the kidnapper might have grabbed them anyway.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    They focus on the potential victims because that is the only behaviour that they can realistically influence.

    It would be brilliant if a campaign that said 'Rapists: don't rape anyone. Murderers: don't murder anyone. Robbers: don't steal anything. Etc, etc' actually had any influence at all, but it won't. Criminals don't give a shit about right and wrong, that's what makes them criminals. So the best we can do is tell people to lock their doors and walk in well-lit areas and not to drink to excess, not because if they don't they deserve bad things to happen to them, but because the bad things will be less likely to happen to them.

    If people know this, and take risks anyway, that's up to them.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    OK, so let's stop telling kids not to talk to strangers too. After all, the kidnapper might have grabbed them anyway.

    Are u going to stop leaving the house for fear of being hit by a bus, indrid? After all, it wouldn't have happened if you weren't crossing the road.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    OK, so let's stop telling kids not to talk to strangers too. After all, the kidnapper might have grabbed them anyway.

    Yes the kidnapper may have grabbed them anyway. There's a difference between teaching a child about 'stranger danger' and umming and aahing over whether the victim being drunk played a role in being raped.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    The only person who can prevent rape is the rapist. Drinking less MAY make you less vulnerable and MAY reduce the risk but I find the campaign's focus on the completely normal, social behaviour of the victim unhelpful.

    To suggest that the victim could have in any way prevented themselves being raped is damaging and irresponsible not only to people that have already been raped but also to victims coming forward and reporting it.

    I'm starting to think that you are exactly the kind of person that this campaign was aimed at, and are currently showing why it was so important.

    If the victim was absolutely hammered, then they could have potentially prevented themselves from being raped by not putting themselves in that position in the first place. It doesn't make it their fault that it happened, but they could have prevented that particular event from happening.

    Suggesting to young women that it's safe to go out and get hammered, and that they don't need to take any responsibility for their own safety is damaging and irresponsible. Pointing out the evil side of society that is out there waiting for them to fall into its lap isn't.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Yes the kidnapper may have grabbed them anyway. There's a difference between teaching a child about 'stranger danger' and umming and aahing over whether the victim being drunk played a role in being raped.


    Yes, you're right. There's a difference between teaching a child about stranger danger and uming and aahing over whether the victim being drunk played a role in being raped if that's being used to defend the rape charge.

    There is however absolutely no difference between teaching a child about stranger danger and teaching moronic young women who like going out and getting hammered about rapist danger. Which is what this campaign was doing - until the whingers got it pulled.

    There's a separate issue, around the numbskulls in society who think that you shouldn't be able to make a rape allegation if you were drunk. But, that's a separate issue. There's the potential to reduce the need for some of these rapes to ever happen if you can prevent the opportunity for the crime to take place occuring.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    .
  • Indrid ColdIndrid Cold Warming up? Posts: 16,688
    smaug wrote: »
    Are u going to stop leaving the house for fear of being hit by a bus, indrid? After all, it wouldn't have happened if you weren't crossing the road.
    Exactly. But I have lots to gain by leaving the house, and if I do leave then I can still be careful. If I get drunk off my head, I'm pretty much absolutely incapable of being careful.
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