The ‘SlutWalk’ Came to Town Yesterday

And mercifully, I was nowhere near the city center.

Some 2 000 provocatively dressed protesters marched through Cape Town on Saturday, bringing an international campaign against the notion that a woman’s appearance can excuse attacks to a country where rape is seen as a national crisis.

Men wore miniskirts and women draped sexy lingerie over their street clothes as they walked a route where fans partied during last year’s football world cup. Some protesters pushed their children in strollers and carried signs declaring, “Rapists rape people, not outfits”, and “Weak men rape”.

“It’s very important that women should understand that their dignity should not be taken away from them,” said Tayla Orgill, who was among the Cape Town walkers.

According to the most recent police statistics, more than 55 000 cases of rape and indecent assault were reported in South Africa from 2009 to 2010. The number of sexual offences against women climbed nearly 20% from the previous year, according to police.

When Toronto policeman Michael Sanguinetti offered advice to students on how to avoid sexual assault he could not have imagined that he would spark an international movement that manifested itself in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

“Women should avoid dressing like sluts in order not to be victimised,” Sanguinetti told a crime safety forum meeting at a Toronto university in January this year.

His throwaway comment inspired Slutwalk, a protest movement against linking rape to what women wear.

Johannesburg will host a similar event …

South Africa’s Slutwalk organisers say whether you are “a fellow slut or simply an ally, you don’t have to wear your sexual proclivities on your sleeve. We just ask that you come. Come walk or roll or strut or holler or stomp with us.”

The whole piece is here.

Am I the only one to see the idiocy that is a ‘slut walk’ (!) for female dignity? Certainly, woman walking the city streets scantily clad in lingeries is no answer! It’s just so sad to see that modesty and decency are no longer the order of the day…

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About Fr Stephen Smuts

TAC Priest in South Africa.
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One Response to The ‘SlutWalk’ Came to Town Yesterday

  1. ShaneWozEre says:

    I think that the “slut walk” can be taken too seriously sometimes.

    The impression that I get is that the whole affair is a bit of a tongue in cheek approach to combatting many (generally) more conservative peoples over-simplification of the often complex boundaries to what constitutes as rape. I think we can all agree that the figures for the conviction of rapists in most countries is appalling and, personally, I believe that jumping to the conclusion that “well, she was just inviting it” is a very dangerous one as it encourages a certain spectrum of men to justify their actions of forcing themselves upon women whom they deem to be “sluts” or “slutty” and discourage women who have generally been wronged to come forward due to a guilt forced on them by a disapproving society.

    Having said that I don’t completely agree with the idea of the slut walk. Despite their best intentions I do sometimes feel like there will be certain elements of (a generally young and naive) society who may get the wrong impression from a rally like this.

    I think that as a society we must endeavor to combat all aspects of this problem. We must allow women explore their sexuality safely and intelligently, trying to encourage our media not to push the opinion that a young womans power lies solely in her ability to have someone want her sexually but also to combat mens treatment of these women and the view that the exterior impression of an “invitation to treat” is not an “invitation to treat.”

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