A series of posters have been put up all over Bristol highlighting some of the lingering myths around blaming the victims of rape. The campaigns message is simple: There are no excuses for rape and the victim is never to blame: Whatever they were wearing; However much they’ve had to drink; Even if they’ve said yes to other sexual activities.
It remains a depressing reality that such an advertising campaign is needed in the first place. Sadly though, they really are.
The campaign group behind the posters says that 3894 women and girls in Bristol aged 16-59 are victims of sexual assault in a year. This statistic becomes even more shocking in the context of there only being about 140,000 women of that age living in Bristol.
The campaign primarily focuses though on removing any lingering doubts that a victim is, in any way, to blame if he/she is raped. It is not a question – a victim is not to blame for being raped.
This is a point that BBC Radio Bristol failed to pick up on when they tweeted about these new posters asking the question:
Is a victim of rape ever to blame for being attacked? Posters put up around Bristol from today say they’re not. pic.twitter.com/z3zhaKGl94
— BBC Radio Bristol (@bbcrb) November 21, 2013
Well, Radio Bristol (and local radio’s obsessive compulsion to make everything into an interactive question)…no, a victim of rape is never to blame for being attacked. By even asking the question I think you have missed the key slogan of this campaign: There are no excuses for rape and the victim is never to blame.
Remove the question mark BBC Radio Bristol. A rape victim is never to blame.
Follow the conversation on twitter #noexcusebristol