Friday 28 December 2012
2012: the year when it became okay to blame victims of sexual assault
The myth that women can be held responsible [no] for men’s sex crimes has returned, writes Laura Bates
"At Caernarfon Crown Court earlier this month, a 49-year-old man was convicted of raping a teenage girl. Jailing the rapist, the judge told him: “She let herself down badly. She consumed far too much alcohol and took drugs, but she also had the misfortune of meeting you”.
It was the latest in a wave of examples of victim-blaming [no], a phenomenon that Christina Diamandopoulos, of the Rape Crisis charity, describes as the “myth that women are responsible for men’s sexual behaviour. From this stems the idea that what a woman wears, says, where she goes, or what she does can make her responsible [no] for the crime committed against her.” The problem is compounded by common misconceptions, such as the idea that all rapists are strangers, who attack in dark alleys at night. In fact, Ms Diamandopoulos says, “most rape is committed by partners, ex-partners and men who are known to the woman”."