A bit of a random blog for me this but a reaction to something I’ve seen a lot of on twitter of late and something I’m half struggling to understand.  A while ago some police force or other released a poster, very similar I’m sure to the type we’ve all seen warning young ladies about rapists, the usual don’t go down dark alleys on your own at night kind of thing.  Similarly there was also one about not getting too drunk.  Immediately I noticed a bit of a twitter outcry about how the police were indulging in ‘victim blaming’ and it would be far better to have posters simply saying ‘don’t rape’.

It’s a view I have a lot of sympathy with actually, young ladies should be absolutely free to walk down dark alleys or across parks in the middle of the night wearing as little as they please without fear of attack or reprisal from some crazy chap lurking in the bushes.  If I ever have children I hope the world is a safer place and this is no longer an issue.  

Whilst I have sympathy with the view though I don’t wholly agree, I place no blame whatsoever on the victim of what is an awful crime however there are things one can do to minimise crime.  For instance one wouldn’t walk around on the tube with all your possessions on show, iPhones dangling out of pockets or your wallet peeking out from wherever you happen to keep it.  Of course we should be able to and I’m desperately sad we can’t but it’s a fact of life that pickpockets exist.  Unfortunately it’s a fact of life rapists and murderers exist also.  So while you are in no way responsible for your own misfortune if you’re a young lady alone at night and you decide to take that short cut down an unlit street or across a deserted park I would urge you nonetheless the take care.  Please do not tempt fate, please take care of yourselves and take the longer route home or get a taxi or a bus.  For until we live in that Utopian society where no evil acts are committed we need to advise our loved ones to be as safe as possible and to not take unnecessary risks, with our property, our person, or our lives.  

Also I’m sure the police whilst perhaps a little misguided in how they worded the poster I’m sure were well meaning in what they were doing.  Yes they probably got it wrong and as I recall apologised but anything that lowers incidences of violent crime, be they rape, gbh, or even murder surely that’s a laudable aim.

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