On April 3, 2011, the first SlutWalk took place in Toronto, Canada. As an attendee that year, I didn't know what to expect that day, and it's fair to say that nobody really did. Now, two years later, we're marking the International Day Against Victim-Blaming. We don't have all the answers to ending rape or victim-blaming. We also don't know what the future holds for SlutWalk Toronto. Whether you agree with SlutWalk or not, whether you think sexual violence is your problem or not, consider that at least 1 in 3 women and girls and 1 in 6 men and boys will experience sexual violence in their lifetimes.
On October 25, Marina Krim returned from taking her three-year-old daughter to the pool, to find her other two children -- Lulu and Leo -- stabbed to death in the bathtub of the family apartment in the Upper West Side. The nanny has since been charged with the murders. Many Internet responses have focused on mother-blaming, and especially on the mother's part-time labour outside the home. The father's labour is not discussed, just as his parenting skills are not criticized. This is misogynist victim-blaming. Cyberbullying has politics and here they revolve around contempt for women.
Last week, I found myself -- yet again -- explaining why it is wrong to blame women for being sexually assaulted. Since a woman can be deemed "bad" for anything from wearing a short skirt, to not covering her hair, to having an opinion of her own, the game is clearly rigged. So I don't play. I don't care what a woman wears, says, or does: she does not deserve to be sexually assaulted. Period. Let's ask the real questions.