Skip to main content

Songs on the Security of Networks
a blog by Michał "rysiek" Woźniak

It's his own fault

This is an ancient post, published more than 4 years ago.
As such, it might not anymore reflect the views of the author or the state of the world. It is provided as historical record.

The scenario is always the same: a girl is raped, often in some secluded place and/or after dark; this gets media attention for one reason or another; then some politician (unsurprisingly, it’s almost always a male politician) remarks what a tragedy this is and how nobody can feel safe nowadays, but after all we already know that so she should have known better and not run after dark, or dress differently, or not run alone, etc. In short – some version of “it’s her own fault”.

And a shitstorm starts. Womens’ rights activists attack the politician (and rightfully so) on how insensitive and ill-advised such a remark is and how making it seem as if the victim is herself somehow guilty in such a scenario is simply offensive and should not be happening.

Then some “traditional-values” public person attacks the activists on how they overreact and how this was just “a simple statement of fact”, and that it is “just common sense to not run alone in the dark”, and that such an attack on the politician is uncalled for.

That’s the point at which I would love to see womens’ rights activists to retort simply: “well, the politician should have known better not to spew such bullshit; had he stayed quiet, none of this bad press would have happened; it’s his own fault”.