Yesterday, I read a news article about how an Australian man prevented a young woman from being attacked as she was walking home from the train station in the very early hours of the morning.
Which makes that man amazing, by the way, and should be a lesson for everyone: don’t turn a blind eye. You literally can make a difference. He did. Be that guy.
However, the two main comments about the situation (made by women), were expressing how it was the fault of women and that women needed to take responsibility for their actions.
You can see it here.
Do people really think women just have escorts to take them everywhere? Not everyone has such a luxury.
Women are listening. But we need to direct the focus to the people committing the crimes, and the people like you who think victim-blaming is okay.
Other than the fact that these idiotic and moronic women are entirely missing the point (that the blame needs to be placed on the perpetrator, not the victim), the issues goes vastly deeper than the standard victim-blaming and shaming.
Kim Kardashian-West was held up at gun point by two men pretending to be police officers in her secure hotel room/mansion thing.
I’m pretty sure we are all aware of the vast Kardashian-West fortune, and the security they have as a result.
Yet, despite the fact that Kim K was supposedly safely in her supposedly secure hotel room, she was robbed at gun point, had $US14 million stolen from her, and tied up and locked in her bathroom.
Where Kim was staying
Hotels – especially the type of hotels Kim and Kanye stay at – have better security than most houses. Certainly better security than my house, where my biggest protection when I’m home alone is my scaredy-cat of a golden retriever.
Kim would have felt safe and secure (up until the robbery, of course) – as she should.
Yet these two men bypassed any security the hotel had (and incapacitated them), as well as any Kim had herself.
Whilst there’s been a disgusting amount of lack of empathy from the internet, the point should be clear (and yes, if you’ve been dismissing Kim’s ordeal, shame on you. I’m no fan of Kim, and I can’t point out any of the other Kardashians/Jenners, it doesn’t change the fact that what happened to her wasterrible. And that should be acknowledged. Would you want your situation to be mocked and dismissed?):
Kim Kardashian, one of the richest women in the world who also has her own personal security, was held at gunpoint and robbed.
And she’s not the first celebrity – I mean rich and famous, not pre-celebrity status – who’s faced such a horrific ordeal.
What about the young singer, Christina Grimmie?
She was gunned down in public.
Despite thousands of people, despite security, she was shot dead for … reasons.
What about Sharon Tate?
She was a famous actress, once married to Roman Polanski (director of The Pianist and Rosemary’s Baby).
She was two weeks away from giving birth when she was murdered in her home along with some of her friends, who were also butchered by members of Charles Manson’s cult.
She was rich.
She wasn’t alone.
She was at home.
She was with both men and women.
She was almost nine months pregnant.
And none of that spared her.
She was still brutally murdered.
So, what’s my point? Why am I picking high-profile famous people, and not every-day people?
To prove that no one is safe.
To illustrate that money can buy security, but it can’t promise safety.
To remind us that no one is untouchable.
These women could afford body guards. Security. They had safe homes, and security measures.
None of the three women mentioned were alone.
Kim K was in her secure hotel room.
She was not out at night, walking alone.
Not doing anything deemed “unsafe” by these women.
In her hotel room.
And that didn’t stop her being the victim of a horrific crime. (Again, no matter what you think of her, being held at gun point, robbed, tied up and locked in your bathroom, all the while wondering if you are going to die, is beyondhorrifying.)
Christina Grimme wasn’t alone, either.
She wasn’t walking home, late at night.
She was with friends, family, fans, and security.
Yet she still wasn’t safe.
She was still gunned down by a mad man.
Sharon Tate was pregnant, and in the security of her own home.
She was also surrounded by loved ones, and that didn’t spare her, either.
There is no fool-proof way to avoid rape and/or murder.
Yes, we do need to take responsibility for our actions and we do need to do our best to remain safe.
However, we also need to remember that we’re never truly safe.
If someone truly wants to hurt you, they will find a way.
Being at home doesn’t mean you’re safe.
Being with people also doesn’t mean you’re safe.
It’s not just the girl walking home at night that can be attacked; it can be the girlfriend, the wife, the friend.
It can be the girl who drinks; it can be the girl who never drinks.
It can be the girl who enjoys sleeping around; it can be the virgin.
No one is immune.
Nothing truly ensures your safety, and life gives you no guarantees.
Perhaps we all need to bear that in mind before we start telling women to take responsibility and amend their behaviour, instead of focusing on the real problem:
We need to change the culture that not only allows this to happen but blames the victim, and not the perpetrator. There is no fool-proof way to avoid being a victim; and that’s the message we need to start sending – not this ridiculous notion of what you can do to be “safe”, and the fallacy that if you aren’t abiding these strict instructions, it’s somehow your fault it happened.
Originally published on The Melodramatic Confessions of Carla Louise.
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Published by Carla Louise