Chrissie Hynde will go down in history as many things: one of the first women to front a rock band, a songwriter of revolutionizing titles including “Brass in Pocket,” and now, as a sympathizer of rapists.
But Hynde isn’t backing these horrendous criminals blindly. No, in fact, she’s been there as a victim herself, so don’t tell her she doesn’t know what she’s talking about.
Because, you know, rape victims did ask for it. All women are asking for it. When I wake up in the morning and decide I want to wear shorts and a tank top, because it’s a grueling 90 degrees outside with 54 percent humidity, I am definitely asking for it. It’s time we take responsibility, ladies, because Hynde says so.
In her new book Reckless, she reflects back on a moment in time in which her 21-year-old self was forced to perform sexual acts – against her will – on a biker gang. The incident has left her victim-blaming herself 40 years later, which is common amongst a lot of rape victims.
According to Katherine Hull Fliflet, the VP of Communications at the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network, “This feeling of self-blame, described by Chrissie Hynde, can often prevent survivors from coming forward and getting the support that they deserve. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding a sexual assault, a victim is never to blame. The responsibility always lies solely with the perpetrator, no matter what.”
Despite Hynde’s beliefs that her rape was her own fault, and that she has solidified in print an ideology that gives rapists the confidence to backup their actions, we sympathize because she is a product of this culture. She writes, “You know, if you don’t want to entice a rapist, don’t wear high heels so you can’t run from him.” The truth is, rape can happen no matter what a victim is wearing, be it heels or a sweater and jeans. Hynde's words tell readers that they cannot go out into the world as themselves, but she also leaves an underlying message that rape messes up your mentality as a person.
Rape is not the fault of the victim. Period. When Emma Sulkowicz came forth with allegations against her rapist, she was met with backlash and called a liar. When Danielle Hicks-Best was raped at 11-years-old, the cops told her it was her “promiscuous behavior” and her fault. Because 11-year-olds are as promiscuous as they come.
Hynde’s words, though incredibly inaccurate, are definitive proof of how victim blaming affects a human being. Furthermore, she justifies the argument that these ideals still exist.
Rape is horrible, and rape culture even more so. Any person who believes a victim asks for it, is fueling the problem, and it’s long overdue we shift the attitudes of everyone to the “no means no” ideals of consent culture.
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