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Live from the Seattle SlutWalk

Below are live photos from the 2011 Seattle SlutWalk.

A video of The Seattle SlutWalk is available here: http://www.seattlerex.com/video-the-seattle-slutwalk/

The SlutWalk

The SlutWalk

Walking Down Pine Street

Walking Down Pine Street

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk Signs

Big Turnout at 5th and Pine

Big Turnout at 5th and Pine

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SLUTWALK

SLUTWALK

Marching Down Pine Street

Marching Down Pine Street

The SlutWalk

The SlutWalk

SlutWalk Supporters

SlutWalk Supporters

Marching Down Pine Street

Marching Down Pine Street

Police Presence

Police Presence

Police Presence

Police Presence

Marching Down Pine Street

Marching Down Pine Street

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk Signs

Marching Down Pine Street

Marching Down Pine Street

Marching Toward Westlake Center

Marching Toward Westlake Center

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk Signs at Westlake Park

SlutWalk Signs at Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk Signs

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

SlutWalk in Westlake Park

28 comments to Live from the Seattle SlutWalk

  • MikeM

    No one would want to rape these cows.

    • me

      @mike; too bad that looks dont matter to a rapist. quite a few people in that crowd are rape victims. RAPE is a violent crime and not one where a person is looking for a connection.. that being said they are just looking for a body to fuck.

      oh and as far as overreactions go, im local and almost 3 years ago i was told by a tacoma officer that because i carried a baby and had my phone out i “made myself an easy target”

      so i guess no one should have phones… or babies.. because that makes you a slut and justifies that rape is ok… right?

      stop fucking thinking about what i am/was wearing and focus on what the man who attacked me looked like and maybe the world will have less raping pigs.

  • Seattle Rex Seattle Rex

    Jesus, a bit mean, no?

    The women look fine, and I am sure they are good people, but I think this was a bit of an overreaction to a comment made by one cop 3,000 miles away.

    Dressing like a “slut” is perfectly legal in most US states.

    Rape, on the other hand, is not legal, and people go to jail for a long, long time for committing the crime … as well they should. I personally do not know one person who supports rape, and I don’t know one person who supports the rape of scantily-clad women.

    As such, this is arguably the most uncontroversial march in the history of the world. What next, “The Great Seattle March Against Random Machete Decapitation”?

    You can no more tell a rapist not to rape than you can tell a serial killer not to serially kill. They’re psychotic. If they could listen to reason, then they wouldn’t be psychotic.

    Nobody without severe mental illness thinks rape is okay, and these marchers know that. This march was little more than a social event to cure a little late-Spring boredom. It was political masturbation at its finest.

    Rape will go on being illegal, police will continue investigate rapes, and prosecutors will continue prosecuting provable rapists, just as they have been doing for a long, long time.

    The march won’t change anything.

    Then again, I don’t imagine that it was designed to change anything.

    It was a street party. Pure and simple. I have nothing against street parties (to the contrary, I rather like them), but lets call it what it is.

    • Jaici

      See the whole point has been missed here. It is not about the rape, it is about the response rec’d by those who have been raped. The legal system as well as personal perception of people who have a deep seated belief system that suggests that she “musta been asking for it” WITH QUESTIONS SUCH AS “What were you wearing?”

      Duh

  • TommyTwoFace

    Fat people should not wear corsets. Nice tits in that last pic, though. Wanna fuck?

  • piker

    It’s always good that fug’n uglies are willing to protect the well-being of the hot women everywhere. It’s like the poor voting republican.

  • Alison

    This was not just a “street party”. 15 out of 16 rapists do not go to jail, and a large portion of that is because survivors of sexual assault are blamed for their rapes and are not taken seriously as victims of other crimes would be. If no one thinks that rape is okay, then why are so many victims of sexual assault blamed for their own assaults? It is disgusting, as are the current comments on this post. Please read http://slutwalkseattle.com/about to learn a little about the extreme importance of this march.

  • bill_t

    Seattle has many charms, but unfortunately having a surfeit of hot women isn’t one of them.

  • Seattle Rex Seattle Rex

    This was not just a “street party”. 15 out of 16 rapists do not go to jail

    Are these convicted rapists not being given jail time by a judge, or is this just a theoretical number that is impossible to objectively quantify?

    For such a statistic to be proffered in intellectual discourse, the number of known rapes would have to be absolute. I submit that you cannot possibly know such a number.

    and a large portion of that is because survivors of sexual assault are blamed for their rapes and are not taken seriously as victims of other crimes would be.

    The United States has the highest number of its citizens incarcerated than any other country on earth. The United States has the highest percentage of its citizens involuntarily locked in cages than any other country on earth. As a matter of fact, we have three times more people locked in cages than the #2 country (Poland).

    What could be more “serious” than locking someone in a cage?

    I find it exceedingly difficult to accept your premise that the USA does not punish its criminals, and that our jailed rapist population is only 1/16th of what it should be.

    I’m sure you’re also aware of the theory that, due to our high incarceration rate, more men are raped each year than are women. I mean, as long as we’re throwing unverifiable claims around.

    If no one thinks that rape is okay, then why are so many victims of sexual assault blamed for their own assaults?

    I don’t accept your notion that they are. I think people make things up to promote their agendas. Remember the “domestic violence on Superbowl Sunday” myth? Shall we hold a march down Pine Street to protest the brutal slaughter of the truth?

    I don’t know anyone who blames the victims for their own assaults. I do know people who think the women took a silly risk.

    If a friend has their car stolen, and they tell me that they left the driver’s side door unlocked with the keys in the ignition, I will tell them that they were unwise. Very, very unwise. I will explain to them that they should take their car keys with them, and lock the car door.

    Is it your position that I would be blaming my friend for his car theft?

    It is disgusting, as are the current comments on this post.

    No argument on that one.

    Please read http://slutwalkseattle.com/about to learn a little about the extreme importance of this march.

    This march is not important. It’s superfluous. You just got up in front of the choir and preached.

    How many rapists do you think attended the march? How many mentally ill people saw this march and said “you know, those people are right, I think I’ll stop raping women.”

    You marched in front of a friendly crowd, smiled and waved, then went home. You cannot possibly be so obtuse as to believe that this has changed the mind or methods of a single rapist. You seem well spoken, and I steadfastly refuse to accept that this is your position.

    Indulge me in one more analogy.

    I never walk through Morrisania with a gold chain around my neck.

    Do I have a right to do so?

    Absolutely. I have a full and legal right to walk through Morrisania wearing whatever I damn well please.

    Then why don’t I?

    Because the chances of me being robbed are very high.

    Would it be my fault if I got robbed in Morrisania?

    No.

    If I encountered a cop in Morrisania, and he said “you might want to put that chain in your pocket or you might get robbed”, would I be angry with the cop?

    Of course not. I would thank him for caring. I would thank him for possibly preventing me from getting robbed. The cops know the realities of the street. They didn’t make it so, they only know that it is.

    Would the cop’s instructions be “blaming the victim”?

    Who cares? You can spin anything the way you want to. If I wanted to make an issue out of it, I could probably get some gullible college students to march up 3rd Avenue decrying “police blame” and demanding that people recognize my right to wear a gold chain in Morrisania.

    Would you march with me? Do you really want the cops to lie to you? Do you really want them to say “Oh sure, it’s perfectly safe to walk around here with your boobs hanging out!”

    Frankly, if it’s not safe, I want to know. If you really cared about women, you would want them to know too.

    But, here you are, blaming the cop for telling you the truth as he saw it.

    It makes no sense.

    Bad things happen, and those things are not your fault. Mitigating risk, however, does not mean that you have acquiesced. It means that you are intelligent.

    If you are not teaching women to mitigate risk in an urban area, then you are putting dogma over reality. You are hurting women.

    You don’t care about these women. You are giving them advice which increases their chances of harm. They looked up to you for help and guidance, and you responded by manipulating them.

    That is the biggest shame of all, and yes, it’s your fault.

  • Seattle Rex Seattle Rex

    Wait, I just found a couple of hard statistics:

    According to the Department of Justice, if a rape is reported, there is a 50% chance of an arrest being made. This is a fairly consistent percentage with most serious crimes.

    Of those arrested, 80% are prosecuted.

    Eighty percent!

    But wait, how could this be?

    According to you, rape is not taken seriously.

    I hate to break it to you, but when 8/10ths of those arrested for any crime are prosecuted, that crime is taken pretty damn seriously.

    I understand that corporate media is afraid to challenge your claims, but Jesus Christ, doesn’t anyone in your group say “wait a minute, let me double check these numbers”? Has the Statistics Department at UW been eliminated in the budget cuts?

    You can’t possibly be serious with all of these claims. They are so easily rebutted that it precludes logic that you have made it this far without serious challenge to your methodology.

    Has everyone in this town ceded their intellect simultaneously?

  • Alison

    Nope, we really do think. Thanks for assuming that we’re not thinking about what we’re doing, though. That’s definitely appreciated. Thanks for also saying that I don’t care about women. You’ve definitely got me figured out. (Actually, what you’ve got me doing is not listening to what you say, because when you accuse me of being stupid, and about not caring about an issue that is EXCEEDINGLY important to me, I no longer care what you have to say).

    When calculating the number of rapists who go to jail, you forgot about a few important facts. The Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network lays it out very nicely for you at http://www.rainn.org/get-information/statistics/reporting-rates (and yes, they cite their sources)

    1) The very large majority of rapes are never reported. (approximately 60%)
    2) Prosecution of a rapist does not mean that they will be convicted.
    3) Conviction of a rapist does not mean that they will spend time in jail.

    The chain effect of this means that yes, it is indeed estimate that 15 out of 16 rapists will never spend time in jail.

  • Rose

    8/10ths of those arrested getting prosecuted for a crime that only gets reported between 30-40% of the time is nothing to be proud of. Neither does the fact that far too many of those prosecuted get acquitted because the victim is essentially put on trial to see if anything in his/her past sexual and other experiences somehow would indicate that he/she actually wanted what happened to happen.

    A lot of other things I’d like to respond to in your statements, but presently I don’t have the energy. You missed the point entirely. The clothing has absolutely nothing to do with if someone is going to get raped or not. You took pictures of at least one of the women at the event you was holding a sign talking about getting raped in clothing you would see in a normal, everyday situation. There were a large group of us there who were assaulted in our own homes in sweats or pajamas, which is representative of the reality of many rape cases. If wearing clothing that covered more prevented rape, the Middle East wouldn’t have a higher rape statistic than the States. If it were about the clothing, you would see out of control males jumping females who are dressed provocatively on a regular basis. Rape isn’t about sex, it’s about control and power. Please go do more research before you keep perpetuating the same idea that this walk is working to counter.

  • Anon

    ‎”If rape is ever reported, there is only a 50.8% chance of an arrest. If that arrest is made, there is an 80% chance of prosecution which still only has a 58% chance of a conviction. If there is a felony conviction, there is about a 69% chance the convict will spend time in jail. So even if the 39% of assaults are reported, there is only a 16.3% chance the rapist will end up serving prison time. So that means 15 out of 16 rapist will walk free without ever serving time for their heinous act. [31]”

    Do some math, asshole. Rape is an unreported crime, and just because they’re prosecuted doesn’t mean a conviction will take place (and, if you think about it, people are probably less likely to go forward if they don’t think they’ll get a conviction).

    Your point about our incarceration rate is also dumb– if anything, it means we need to concentrate more on violent crimes instead of non-violent drug offenses (which are what are filling up our prisons) and have prison reform to protect inmates. As someone who was assaulted and didn’t go through with prosecuting, I can tell you that you’re full of shit.

  • tuff bitch

    this is ridiculous. your analysis is fucking totally off. rapists and people who assault are not strangers a majority of the time (or people who are “psychopaths who are mentally ill,” as you say), they are people that the survivors know; people in their immediate communities, a majority of the time. statistics for rape and assault are never going to be pure because people don’t trust the cops (so they don’t call them), and because most people know their rapists and fear backlash. this shit is consistently under reported.
    this walk was important because femininity is constantly under attack and despite your “personal experience,” there is a cycle of violence, and the way femininity is demonized is a large part of it.
    http://pugetsoundanarchists.org/node/695
    it’s a critique of slut walk as well as appealing to the cops to stay safe.

  • Seattle Rex Seattle Rex

    When calculating the number of rapists who go to jail, you forgot about a few important facts. The Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network lays it out very nicely for you at http://www.rainn.org/get-information/statistics/reporting-rates (and yes, they cite their sources)

    Facts?

    Are you serious?

    I mean, are you completely serious?

    Take a look at that link you posted.

    Now, look at it again.

    RAINN calls men who have been ACQUITTED of rape … “rapists”.

    When a claim of rape is discovered to be false, RAINN calls the falsely accused … a “rapist”.

    When a charge of rape is not even brought against a man, RAINN calls that man a “rapist”.

    I cannot believe that you would trot out these FRAUDULENT “statistics” as proof that “15 out of 16 rapists walk free”.

    When someone is acquitted of rape, of course they walk free. What do you think we should do? Imprison them anyway?

    When a rape claim is found to be bogus, of course the falsely accused walks free. Is it really your official position that we should imprison the falsely accused anyway?

    When there is no evidence to support a rape charge, of course that person walks free. Would you have it any other way?

    When a rape goes unreported, of course the rapist does not go to jail. How would he? I mean, unless we tossed all men in jail as a prophylactic measure.

    All you have really done here is uncovered massive fraud and misrepresentation by a tax-exempt organization, and underscored the abject gullibility of all who quote this horribly misleading “statistic”. The fact that this organization has been allowed to continue operating under these fraudulent auspices is a testament to the rampant corruption endemic in our own government.

    I’ve seen a lot of junk data in my lifetime, but this … this 15 out of 16 thing takes it all.

    I ask you to think again about what you have done. You have called completely innocent people “rapists”, and you have apparently been doing so with complete impunity fostered by a spineless, corrupt media and an educational system completely bereft of intellect.

    You should be embarrassed. Completely embarrassed quoting these “statistics”.

    I find it nothing short of shocking that you can get so many women in this supposedly-educated town to sign on to such complete and utter nonsense.

    What you are preaching is not only rampant anti-intellectualism, it is complete and utter fraud.

    I don’t know how you sleep at night. My guess is that you feel the end justifies the means, but this is typically the rationale of every corrupt endeavor.

    Once again, I ask you to revisit those stats and dissect them. If, after careful consideration, you still think that “15 out of 16 rapists walk free”, and you think that this methodology has merit, then I respectfully suggest that you run, don’t walk, but run back to the admissions office and demand a full refund of your tuition.

    Jesus Christ, between you folks and the religious right wingnuts who are convinced that an invisible man in the sky watches everyone take a shit, I find myself convinced that the mothership is moments away from picking me up and returning me to my homeland in a distant galaxy.

    I mean, you can’t be serious. You just can’t. Nobody is this clearly and overtly obtuse. I absolutely, positively refuse to believe it.

  • Seattle Rex Seattle Rex

    Do some math, asshole.

    Says “Anon”.

    Which numbers should I run? The 15/16ths thing again?

    Rape is an unreported crime, and just because they’re prosecuted doesn’t mean a conviction will take place

    Really?

    No kidding?

    You mean courts don’t convict people when the evidence doesn’t support such a conviction?

    Who would have thought?

    Is it the official position of “Anon” that anyone accused of rape be summarily tossed in jail sans-trial?

    I just cannot accept that you will slander so many people because you feel that you yourself have been slandered.

    You’ve ceded the moral high ground.

    (and, if you think about it, people are probably less likely to go forward if they don’t think they’ll get a conviction).

    What you have said applies to every crime. You’ve failed to support a widespread conspiracy against the prosecution of rape.

    Your point about our incarceration rate is also dumb– if anything, it means we need to concentrate more on violent crimes instead of non-violent drug offenses (which are what are filling up our prisons) and have prison reform to protect inmates.

    Yet here you are all advocating the wholesale incarceration of completely innocent people, and when that doesn’t happen, you openly decry that they “walk free”.

    Is this the “prison reform” of which you speak?

    As someone who was assaulted and didn’t go through with prosecuting, I can tell you that you’re full of shit.

    Well, that was your own fault. Had you proceeded, you had a nearly 60% chance of prevailing.

    I’m sorry that you went through something terrible, I really am, but this in and of itself does not justify the fraudulent claims proffered by some in this particular movement.

    I’ll be the first person to lock a rapist animal in a cell, but I simply refuse to participate in a witch hunt.

    I will not refer to falsely accused or acquitted people as “rapists” to bolster a statistic designed to raise money for a corporo-charity.

    If you are falsely disparaging innocent people, you are no better than those who falsely disparage you.

    In fact, you should know better.

  • Chuckreis

    So 93% of the rapists of the world are walking free?

    Putting numbers aside, what did the walk do? What did it bring awareness to that was not already known?

    If someone was raped and was afraid to come forward, what about this walk would inspire them to come forward? I would think the big Slut Walk sign might actually scare away some people.

    I understand the need for empowerment and I am down with a lot of the parts of a male dominant society causing issues for women, but I just don’t see this walk as something helpful. Are we cheering on rape victims? Are we telling women to show more skin?

    Reading the “About” page did not make it any clearer:

    “People of all orientations, gender identities, races, ages, abilities, walks of life, and levels of sluttiness are invited to join us. All we ask is that you stand with us for what is right. We’re sick of being shamed for our sex choices and being told that survivors of sexual assault brought it on themselves. If you’re sick of it too, come walk with us!”

    Huh? Is this about rape or “sex choices”? What is a sex choice? If my sex choice is to have a dog lick peanut butter off my scrotum is that cool?

  • bill_t

    It’s just an excuse for a party, and to feel self-righteous about it. Kinda like Critical Mass bike rides.

  • Not a Hater

    Kudos for a very interesting discussion on the comments section, Rex.

  • Joey

    You’re fighting an uphill battle against an ingrained mentality Rex…on your own turf no less. But arguing with idiots is like banging your head against the wall, you get nowhere and end up with a terrible headache.

  • Samuel Schimmel

    Alright, after getting shouted out of a radical feminist blog’s comment section for being a guy, I usually avoid getting into these discussions, but this site keeps showing up in our inbox via Google Alerts so I’ll bite.

    Scanning the comments here I can see you’re a fan of the theft/hate speech analogy… the one that goes, you wouldn’t walk around dressed provocatively and expect not to be raped just as you wouldn’t expect to walk around with wads of cash and expect not to get mugged/drive a nice car and expect it to not get stolen/wear a t-shirt with an offensive slogan on it and expect it not get punched. The usual response goes something like this:

    a) Women’s bodies are not property/hate speech (I know this doesn’t answer the analogy but it’s worth pointing out)

    b) If your property is stolen or you are non-sexually assaulted, regardless of the cirumstances, the court will not deny your ability to press charges or commute the perpetrator’s sentence because of the area you were in or how you were behaving (if “s/he had it coming” was a valid defense in other cases, the Westboro Baptist Church wouldn’t make a killing baiting people into attacking them) (see: http://slutwalkseattle.com/faqs). If you’re a victim of violence because of any of a number of particular aspects of your identity (chosen or not), the perpetrator will be punished even more heavily because it’s considered a hate crime. With sexual violence, if that part of your identity is your attire, and that attire is percieved to be “slutty” (something that’s completely relative), the perpetrator will be punished LESS.

    c) Our research into sexual violence suggests that attire actually doesn’t provoke sexual violence. The vast majority of sexual violence takes place by someone who knows the victim, often in the victim’s own home. With sexual violence, sex as a factor is secondary to power. People of all ages, genders, and abilities are victims of sexual violence. Provocative behavior is a factor in only 4.4% of sexual assault cases versus 22% of murder cases. Most rapists don’t even remember what their victim was wearing. On a strictly rational level, knowing what we know about the nature of sexual violence, it just doesn’t make sense that attire would provoke assault because rape isn’t a crime of opportunity. It generally involves a lot of planning and a tremendous amount of risk. Most men – rapists included – aren’t rape robots who instantly attack at the sight of flesh (and those who do need to be institutionalized). They stalk, study, and often groom their victims for great lengths of time prior to the assault. Clothing just can’t be a factor there.

    d) Given this, empowering (potential) victims to protect themselves is all fine and good, through sensible means like learning a martial art, carrying a weapon, staying in groups, etc. It’s important we don’t become so obsessed with self-defense that we penalize victims for not taking such precautions (something we do constantly in our society). Ultimately, the only people who can truly “prevent” rape are the individuals committing it. If someone’s set on raping you, wearing an extra layer of clothing isn’t going to do you much good. The only tangible consequences I see in telling women they need to dress or behave a way in order to prevent their own victimization is that rapists get off because the defense can point to the victim’s short skirt, as well as the emotional trauma of victim-blaming many survivors go through in addition to the trauma of sexual assault.

    e) We think that, as a society, we can do better. The previous points are almost irrelevant because law enforcement telling women to make basic choices like how they dress out of fear of sexual violence just isn’t good enough. We’re doing SlutWalk to demand institutions, society, and media be held to higher standards.

    Side note 1: Sanguinetti’s remarks were just the catalyst for this. They’re endemic of our larger cultural attitude concerning sexual violence, and it isn’t just in Canada.

    Side note 2: I think it’s been said in here but SlutWalk doesn’t target individual rapists, it targets institutionalized victim-blaming.

    Side note 3: I’m glad you came at least… seems like most critics don’t bother to do any research at all let alone attend the event. Still, after coming and hearing our speakers, five of whom were themselves victims of assault and at least three of whom were subject to victim-blaming, share their stories, I’m a little surprised you got “street party” out of a crowd of crying people.


    Samuel Schimmel
    SlutWalk Seattle Leader

  • Samuel Schimmel

    Also, regarding your comment to anon that he/she could’ve prosecuted, it wasn’t up to them. Rape’s a crime against the state. The decision to prosecute isn’t in the victim’s hands.

  • Samuel Schimmel

    Another side-note regarding comments about competing world issues… I wonder, do you think victim-blaming isn’t a concern, or just that it isn’t a priority? If it’s the latter, I don’t think this is a valid criticism of SWS because we’re not stopping you or anyone else from addressing these other concerns you list on the video page, and I know I didn’t take time off from solving world hunger to organize SlutWalk. Most everyone has something about the world they’d like to change, and you can appreciate the gravity of other concerns while doing something about those that are nearest and dearest to your heart, especially since these causes draw effort and funds from different resource pools a lot of the time – SlutWalk draws a lot of young people who aren’t (yet) equipped with the experience and know-how to take on inflation, foreclosure, and healthcare costs, but who have been assaulted or are close to someone who has been assaulted and want to stand up for them. In either case providing a forum for people to get civically involved is never a bad thing these days.

  • Samuel Schimmel

    A few more points…

    a) I feel like you’re painting this as (exclusively) a white woman’s problem. It’s not. Victims are blamed all the time in our society (another example that comes to mind for me is poor/single parent/etc. families who are blamed for their or their children’s shortcomings when structural factors are what keep them from succeeding). Victim-blaming in assault cases in particular affects people of all genders, races, classes, orientations, etc., especially minorities, hence the diversity in our speaker’s line-up (2/7 were people of color; at least 3/7 were queer, one of whom I believe was transgender) and also in our attendees.

    b) while victim-blaming includes (way too common) sentiments like “she deserved it,” we define it more broadly as placing the burden of violence prevention of the victim. It can be more subtle and implicit i.e. Sanguinetti’s statement, and we feel those attitudes feed into the more tangible kind of victim-blaming that denies victims justice because of what they were wearing or how they behaved (or were perceived to have been behaving). I wish victim-blaming was limited to what some cop said 3k miles away. :/

    c) you don’t believe SWs around the world changed or will change anything, which leads me to ask again, do you think victim-blaming’s a problem at all? If so, I’d say that SW isn’t the first, the only, or the last movement addressing it. It can’t and won’t change everything on it’s own. That’s okay. It’s starting a lot of important conversations like this one that I hope will, overtime, at least shift some attitudes. You may not think that validates the hundreds of volunteer hours I poured into this “political masturbation” over the past two months, but because I feel so strongly about this cause, and because I know in a liberal democracy peaceful demonstrations are one of our best means of effecting change, that’s enough for me.

  • Seattle Rex Seattle Rex

    I’m sure I don’t have to tell you, but there is a large amount of anti-intellectualism permeating our culture, and most consensus is reached these days on the basis of who can shout the loudest and ostracize the greatest.

    You make a lot of good points, and I have taken these points. I’m not sure if they have changed my mind necessarily, but I think you have done a very good job giving more credibility to the walk than I (and I’m sure others) otherwise might have given it. It really appears that you are advocating from a position of good-faith.

    I do have some specific rebuttals, and I will answer some of your questions when I get to a stopping point later.

  • Seattle Rex Seattle Rex

    Samuel,

    I can really appreciate your passion and commitment to this particular cause. I am glad there are people like you in the world.

    That being said, when it comes to some of the main feminist issues of the day, personally, I have a hard time getting past the fraud.

    “15 out of 16 rapists go free”, “Domestic violence is highest on Super Bowl Sunday”, “1/4 of women are raped by age 25”, etc, etc, etc.

    And women believe this? How can we trust such flawed judgement? When an entire movement willingly calls innocent people “rapists”, how can we take anything else seriously? That’s a tough thing to get past. Some would say it is an impossible thing to get past.

    I have also received a lot of “hate” email over this subject. On two of those occasions, I was threatened with bodily harm. Ironically, both threatened to castrate me.

    Now, maybe it’s just me, but I find it hard to accept an anti-violence message from people who threaten to mutilate my genitalia.

    There is a real tolerance problem in the tolerance movement, which is to say, there is none. “See it my way or die” is no different from the bible-thumping Baptists, and in my opinion, most modern-day social movements are little more than hate groups with better PR.

    Now, I know that two people do not make a movement, but if you march down Pine Street because a single cop 3,000 miles away makes an offhand remark, to what extent will you go to cull those who advocate violent genital mutilation from your ranks?

    The question is rhetorical, but you can see the condundrum. Before we tell others how to act, we need to get our own house in order and all that.

    Those are some of my general problems with the movement.

    Now, on to some more specific questions:

    Women’s bodies are not property/hate speech (I know this doesn’t answer the analogy but it’s worth pointing out)

    I’m not sure what this has to do with anything.

    If I walk through Compton at 1am simply because I have a right to, and I am shot dead, my body is not anyone’s property, but what does it matter?

    If it’s not safe to walk through Compton at 1am, and you failed to tell me this to avoid a politically-correct label, then shame on you. You were more concerned with being popular than you were about my safety.

    Yes, shame on the murderer too, but shame on you as well, and to some extent … shame on me.

    Life is complicated. Telling rapists not to rape, and murderers not to murder shows a lack of understanding of this basic premise.

    I wish that we could live life by bumper stickers and slogans scrawled on cardboard boxes, but unfortunately, it’s not possible.

    If your property is stolen or you are non-sexually assaulted, regardless of the cirumstances, the court will not deny your ability to press charges or commute the perpetrator’s sentence because of the area you were in or how you were behaving (if “s/he had it coming” was a valid defense in other cases, the Westboro Baptist Church wouldn’t make a killing baiting people into attacking them) (see: http://slutwalkseattle.com/faqs). If you’re a victim of violence because of any of a number of particular aspects of your identity (chosen or not), the perpetrator will be punished even more heavily because it’s considered a hate crime. With sexual violence, if that part of your identity is your attire, and that attire is percieved to be “slutty” (something that’s completely relative), the perpetrator will be punished LESS.

    Of course they will. At least to some degree. The court always considers the possibility of “mitigating circumstances”?

    “In criminal law, conditions or happenings which do not excuse or justify criminal conduct, but are considered out of mercy or fairness in deciding the degree of the offense the prosecutor charges or influencing reduction of the penalty upon conviction. Example: a young man shoots his father after years of being beaten, belittled, sworn at and treated without love. “Heat of passion” or “diminished capacity” are forms of such mitigating circumstances.”

    There are all kinds of factors, such as willfulness, intent, and egregiousness that will cause people to receive different treatment by the court system.

    Now, are people punished less simply because a woman is wearing a short skirt?

    On that basis alone, I think it’s unlikely.

    I heard anecdotally of a case where a man was prosecuted for raping a prostitute, and his punishment was light because it was later revealed that he simply didn’t pay her (or something to that effect), but he didn’t get off simply because she was wearing a short skirt. It was because the sex was otherwise consensual. My guess is that most feminist groups would interpret her short skirt as the one and only reason he was spared.

    In 2011, in the USA, I think you will find that “slutty attire” is not a common reason for exoneration.

    Our research into sexual violence suggests that attire actually doesn’t provoke sexual violence. The vast majority of sexual violence takes place by someone who knows the victim, often in the victim’s own home. With sexual violence, sex as a factor is secondary to power. People of all ages, genders, and abilities are victims of sexual violence. Provocative behavior is a factor in only 4.4% of sexual assault cases versus 22% of murder cases. Most rapists don’t even remember what their victim was wearing. On a strictly rational level, knowing what we know about the nature of sexual violence, it just doesn’t make sense that attire would provoke assault because rape isn’t a crime of opportunity. It generally involves a lot of planning and a tremendous amount of risk. Most men – rapists included – aren’t rape robots who instantly attack at the sight of flesh (and those who do need to be institutionalized). They stalk, study, and often groom their victims for great lengths of time prior to the assault. Clothing just can’t be a factor there.

    I think you are misunderstanding the “clothing” angle.

    A general tenet for optimal street safety is simply to not stand out. Standing out could be wearing an expensive watch, carrying an expensive phone, being obviously intoxicated, and yes, wearing revealing clothes.

    If you want to decrease your chances for being a victim of street crime, be low key. Blend in and draw as little attention to yourself as possible. This is what I advocate people do if they are by themselves.

    Note that this does not just go for women, it goes for everyone.

    The caveat is that, if I dressed in a revealing manner, more people would be repulsed by me than attracted to me. They would probably want to get as far away from me as possible.

    For young females, of course, the reverse is true. Attractive females will naturally get attention, and the more revealing they dress, the more attention they will receive. Be it rape, robbery, or simply verbal abuse, this attention is almost always a negative thing.

    When I advise (and I think this is the case for most people) others to cover up, dress down, and be cool, it is because on the street … anonymity is your friend. We don’t target what we don’t notice.

    Again, I think you are approaching the “dress conservatively” comments as more sinister than they were intended.

    Given this, empowering (potential) victims to protect themselves is all fine and good, through sensible means like learning a martial art, carrying a weapon, staying in groups, etc. It’s important we don’t become so obsessed with self-defense that we penalize victims for not taking such precautions (something we do constantly in our society). Ultimately, the only people who can truly “prevent” rape are the individuals committing it. If someone’s set on raping you, wearing an extra layer of clothing isn’t going to do you much good. The only tangible consequences I see in telling women they need to dress or behave a way in order to prevent their own victimization is that rapists get off because the defense can point to the victim’s short skirt, as well as the emotional trauma of victim-blaming many survivors go through in addition to the trauma of sexual assault.

    Can you point to some of these cases where rapists “got off” because the victim wore a short skirt?

    You see, I don’t think it happens very often. If this is truly institutionalized, then there should be an abundance of citations.

    You don’t believe SWs around the world changed or will change anything, which leads me to ask again, do you think victim-blaming’s a problem at all?

    “At all” is a catchall, so of course I would have to answer in the affirmative. Anything with an occurrence > 0 meets that definition.

    Is it prevalent, however?

    Somewhere, such as the Middle East, probably. Capitol Hill, Seattle? I doubt it.

    We think that, as a society, we can do better. The previous points are almost irrelevant because law enforcement telling women to make basic choices like how they dress out of fear of sexual violence just isn’t good enough. We’re doing SlutWalk to demand institutions, society, and media be held to higher standards.

    Is this really all that law enforcement does?

    You know, I’ve given the police a hard time myself lately, but your charge is patently unfair.

    The majority of rape charges result in an arrest. A majority of those arrested are prosecuted. A majority of those prosecuted are convicted.

    Yet, you are saying that all that law enforcement does is tell women how to dress. You are saying that institutions and society only blames the women.

    What you are saying is untrue, and frankly, it’s obvious that it’s not true.

    Society spends a large amount of time and resources trying to punish rapists. You know this.

    Side note 1: Sanguinetti’s remarks were just the catalyst for this. They’re endemic of our larger cultural attitude concerning sexual violence, and it isn’t just in Canada.

    Samuel, what color is the sky on your planet?

    In what culture are you immersed?

    Perhaps you need to stop hanging out with these people that advocate castration for dissenters.

    I know a lot of assholes, and exactly zero of them advocate rape or sexual violence. These things are not endemic to my culture. With all due respect, again, maybe you’re hanging out with the wrong people.

    I really don’t think we have a rape-worshipping culture. I doubt the Canadians do either.

    Then again, after Justin Bieber, I can believe just about anything about the Canadians. Talk about a cause for protest.

    Also, regarding your comment to anon that he/she could’ve prosecuted, it wasn’t up to them. Rape’s a crime against the state. The decision to prosecute isn’t in the victim’s hands.

    Then what was anon referring to when s(he) said:

    “As someone who was assaulted and didn’t go through with prosecuting, I can tell you that you’re full of shit.”

    Does not withholding assistance make prosecution more difficult? It’s hard to discuss the specifics of an anonymous comment.

    Another side-note regarding comments about competing world issues… I wonder, do you think victim-blaming isn’t a concern, or just that it isn’t a priority? If it’s the latter, I don’t think this is a valid criticism of SWS because we’re not stopping you or anyone else from addressing these other concerns you list on the video page, and I know I didn’t take time off from solving world hunger to organize SlutWalk. Most everyone has something about the world they’d like to change, and you can appreciate the gravity of other concerns while doing something about those that are nearest and dearest to your heart, especially since these causes draw effort and funds from different resource pools a lot of the time – SlutWalk draws a lot of young people who aren’t (yet) equipped with the experience and know-how to take on inflation, foreclosure, and healthcare costs, but who have been assaulted or are close to someone who has been assaulted and want to stand up for them. In either case providing a forum for people to get civically involved is never a bad thing these days.

    It’s a question of finite resources. Like you said, we can’t fight everything, so we have to pick our battles and prioritize.

    Marching because one man made a comment seems excessive and gratuitous to me. I know you are arguing that it is greater than this one guy, but how much larger is it, really? In my opinion, the problem of the police and the courts not prosecuting rapists is pretty small.

    Obviously, there has to be evidence that a rape occurred before we prosecute someone, but this is a good thing, no?

    while victim-blaming includes (way too common) sentiments like “she deserved it,” we define it more broadly as placing the burden of violence prevention of the victim. It can be more subtle and implicit i.e. Sanguinetti’s statement, and we feel those attitudes feed into the more tangible kind of victim-blaming that denies victims justice because of what they were wearing or how they behaved (or were perceived to have been behaving). I wish victim-blaming was limited to what some cop said 3k miles away. :/

    Again, who says “she deserved it”, and how often? I’m looking for actual case citations here.

    You are telling me that this happens, but I have lived in inner-cities all over this country and have not seen it.

    Do the judges and prosecutors who let these people off have a name?

    Is Sanguinetti’s your primary example? I hope not, because I have to tell you, I don’t think he said what you think he said.

    you don’t believe SWs around the world changed or will change anything, which leads me to ask again, do you think victim-blaming’s a problem at all?

    “At all”, sure. Any problem that has not been fully solved remains a problem to some degree.

    Is it prevalent?

    I don’t think that it is. I know that you disagree, and I believe you are sincere when you say that.

    However, when 80% of those arrested for rape are prosecuted, we reach an intellectual hurdle to overcome.

    If so, I’d say that SW isn’t the first, the only, or the last movement addressing it. It can’t and won’t change everything on it’s own. That’s okay. It’s starting a lot of important conversations like this one that I hope will, overtime, at least shift some attitudes. You may not think that validates the hundreds of volunteer hours I poured into this “political masturbation” over the past two months, but because I feel so strongly about this cause, and because I know in a liberal democracy peaceful demonstrations are one of our best means of effecting change, that’s enough for me.

    Well, that’s fair enough, and of course you don’t need my blessing.

    I would like to ask, however, do you think there is an abundance of rape proponents milling about Pike/Pine or Downtown Seattle?

    Maybe if you held this rally in Middle-Eastern countries where women were killed, I would understand, but in ultra-PC Seattle?

    While the folks marched with their “Rape is Bad” signs, part of me kept waiting for someone in a Captain Obvious costume to make an appearance.

    That being said, it’s important to realize that every movement needs good-faith detractors. A famous writer once told me “If at least 50% of your audience doesn’t hate you, you’re not writing anything worth reading. You’re irrelevant.” Obviously, I’ve taken this to heart, and I long ago stopped caring if people liked or even agreed with me. Hell, I would hate to live in a world where everyone agreed with me.

    I think that, as a passionate organizer, you should keep those words in mind as well. If your protests or rallies are not drawing critics, then your protests are not reaching enough people.

    Even though I don’t necessarily agree with your cause, you certainly have my respect. Doing something is always better than doing nothing. There is far too much apathy, sports-worship, and America-Idol zombieism in the world, and I tip my hat to anyone who gets off their ass and DOES SOMETHING. I’ll defend to my death your right to march wherever you damn well please. If someone tries to disrupt your people, I’ll fall in and personally take a bottle to the head. I was really glad that Westboro thing fizzled. If you think I’m hard on this stuff, you don’t want to see my reaction to the religious fuckbags.

    I think more pressing causes could use someone like you, but you have to follow your own heart and do what you think is right. If this is something that you think needs more attention, then you owe it to everyone, especially yourself, to yell as loud as you can.

    Do your thing, man. Be safe, and be well.

  • Gage

    We also need to stop all the crazy girls that falsey accuse guys of rape. Because i myself have been in that situation. Falsey accused when i had done nothing wrong, and the fucked up thing is that it’s always her words against his, which people tend to beleive her. I am very lucky that bitch didn’t ruin my life. She tried taking it to court and everything and tried saying it happened on a week i was out of state. It’s kinda like how there is two sides to every argument. There will always be that girl that fucked a guy willingly then down the road gets her feelings hurt by so said individual, and craving attention like most female teenagers crosses the line and decides to tell that little lie, when it’s not a “little” deal at all. Where i’m from we tend to handle rapist our own way. And if anyone every did it to someone in my family i would be going to prison. Just had to put in my two cents and fucked up experience. Because maybe someday in the future i could save some guys ass or keep a girl from doing such a horrible heartless thing.

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