#NotGuilty - in Response to the Article of a Very Brave Woman | Teen Ink

#NotGuilty - in Response to the Article of a Very Brave Woman

April 29, 2015
By ChaliceinWonderland GOLD, Oxford, Other
ChaliceinWonderland GOLD, Oxford, Other
10 articles 1 photo 1 comment

Favorite Quote:
"O' vase of acid, it is love you are full of; you know who you hate." - Lesbos, Sylvia Plath

What I have to say has been said a thousand times, by a thousand different people. My opinions are not unique. But, because I have been subject to the the absurd idea that things that have happened to me have been my fault, of my doing because I went out one night, I think it's time I said something about it.


Women are constantly at the mercy of a cruel belief system condemns us for wearing provocative clothing, and that when we do, we are "asking for it" and should be doing more to protect ourselves. Why are we teaching women how to not to be raped rather than men not to rape women? We do not live in a world where a woman would walk almost naked down a backstreet at 4am without potentially fearing sexual assault, and I'm sure most girls have been advised against this by their parents (myself included) and been told about "the bad men in the world" from a very young age, and all of this is completely understandable - these are the words of parents trying to protect their children. But, the fact of the matter is, until we stop condemning women for being in the wrong place at the wrong time in a skirt that's too short and a top that shows their nipples, or teaching them that doing so is wrong, for whatever reason, this ridiculous set of ideas is going to be entrenched into our society forever. I know my dad only said these things to try and protect me, but until we start making a stand then nothing is going to change. No parent wants it to be their daughter putting themselves "at risk", but if we continue to bring our children up to fear skimpy clothed outings, then those who do will persist to receive "well if you hadn't got so drunk that wouldn't have happened" and be the odd ones out. If everyone felt free to dress in such a way way, then when sexual crimes did occur, the dress-sense of the woman would not be subject to blame, or even any real acknowledgement.

So, while I may be at risk in a mini dress on my way home late at night, I would and will refuse to have the finger pointed at me should anything happen. I'm not going to change the way I live my life to fit the behaviour of the kind of men that think it's okay to force themselves on women at any time, of any description or background, wearing anything from a thong to a suit, because changing who I am means I'm letting them win. No means no, regardless of at what point that word gets said. I have the utmost respect for the woman who wrote the article in question,containing a letter she wrote to her attacker, for having the bravery to share her story and for shedding some much needed light on a matter that we seem to be fearful to discuss. Like she said, "my body is not guilty. My clothes are not guilty. Dark streets are not guilty." #‎notguilty

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