Most of the advice we get on reducing sexual violence stresses that WE have to prevent OUR own sexual assault. Have you ever heard or seen advice like: “Always cover your drink, “Use the ‘buddy system’ when going out with friends,” or “Never walk home alone at night”?
These “tips” are useless because people who walk home alone at night or leave their drinks uncovered are not the reason sexual assault happens. The only prevention tips that will work are ones that address the cause of sexual assault: people who choose to sexually assault others! So let’s change the way we view prevention and start passing on real tips that prevent sexual assault by targeting perpetrators. Here are just a few:
(from feminist philosophers)
Tips like these represent a strong message to perpetrators, survivors, and anyone who has been or may be affected by sexual violence: No matter what the situation, sexual assault is always the perpetrator’s fault. A culture that embodies this message would support survivors and condemn perpetrators, and it is this kind of change that will actually end sexual violence.