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Dear Prudence, @YoffeEmily You Should Be Ashamed Of Yourself

October 17, 2013

Dear Prudence

No really. This article that you wrote? It’s a classic example of victim blaming bullshit and a critical compassion fail. How do you still have a job giving other humans advice? Despite your attempts to hide it, you have become a part of the slut-shaming, victim blaming, WRONG group of people who blame women and alcohol for rape and not, you know, rapists.

Let me break it down for you.

These two sentences

Perpetrators are the ones responsible for committing their crimes, and they should be brought to justice. But we are failing to let women know that when they render themselves defenseless, terrible things can be done to them.

negate each other.

That’s how the word but works in the language that is English. As a professional writer, this is information you should already have.

And let’s be clear here. There are absolutely zero women who do not understand that drinking can put us in situations that are unsafe.

The fact that you fail to recognize that actual issue is that women are unsafe whether they are drinking or not. Drinking may put women in a position wherein we are less able to defend ourselves in situations we wouldn’t have to deal with in the first place if we lived in a society that respected us.

The problem isn’t drinking. The problem is rape culture. The problem is you.

Every single part of what you wrote makes it clear that you do not understand the actual causes of rape.

Moreover, I have to say, I feel sorry for your daughter.

I’ve told my daughter that it’s her responsibility to take steps to protect herself.

I sincerely hope that your daughter is never the victim of sexual assault. I honestly hope that she stays safe from that for the rest of her life. I also hope that if she is victimized you are nowhere near her at the time.

You are the kind of parent that rape counselors and victim advocates dread. Despite your platitudes you make it clear that you place total responsibility on the victim, not the perpetrator. You ask hat your child was wearing, who she was with, what she drank and you make it oh so obvious that in your mind, what happened to her is her fault.

You compound the emotional pain of rape with the greater pain  of parental blame.

Your drivel about self-interest and feminist principles not only insults the intelligence of feminists and humans with functioning logic centers but the final point of that paragraph,

I hope their restraint trickles down to the men.

makes it clear that you don’t understand how rape works. Or responsibility. Or basic decency.

Rape prevention isn’t a thing that needs to “trickle down,” to men. It’s a thing that needs to start with them.

Anyone who at this point feels the need to point out that men can be the victims of rape too needs to check yourself. That is factual but it is clearly a subject that Prudence can’t handle at the moment. Baby steps, y’all. Baby steps.

Still, as a young person, I did my share of fun, crazy, silly, stupid, and ill-advised things. But at least I always knew that I was responsible for my behavior, not the alcohol.

Let me close by saying two things. The best way to prevent sexual assault is to teach people that it is unacceptable to assault people. You know, solve the problem, rather than blame the victim. How is this complicated? Further, I desperately hope that if your daughter, or anyone else you care about is the victim of a sexual assault they have someone other than you around to tell them the truth.

The fault lies neither with the victim nor the alcohol. The fault lies with the rapist. End of fucking file.


One Comment leave one →
  1. November 6, 2013 6:17 PM

    I had the same reaction to this article when I saw it.

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