Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

Martin Daubney misses the point completely when talking about sexual harassment

Martin Daubney has written yet another one of his articles dismissing women' experiences of sexual violence insinuating that sexual harassment is just women over-reacting. The arrogance and male entitlement in Daubney's article is breathtaking; as is his clear lack of understanding of rape culture.

Wolf-whistling is misogyny in action. It is not a compliment, nor is wolf-whistling is "a naff hangover from a bygone era". It is a deliberate act perpetrated by men to intimidate and objectify women. It is part of the continuum of sexual violence and micro-aggressions that women experience every single day for the crime of walking to work or taking their children to school or buying groceries or going to see a film. It is a way that men use to ensure that women understand who has the real power: that women are objects who only exist for men's pleasure.

Absolutely men should be holding other men accountable - not because it's a "wasteful distraction" but because it is sexual harassment and it should be a criminal offence. Granted, its unlikely a man will be convicted of this form of sexual harassment even if done in full view of police officers and covered by CCTV. We live in a culture which doesn't hold men accountable for committing rape - we can't even hold men responsible for raping 13 year old girls without making excuses for them. Juries consistently find male rapists not guilty for fear of ruining their lives; very little thought is given to how fundamentally a woman or child's life is changed by sexual violence. This reflects male entitlement to women's bodies and public spaces, something which Daubney refuses to recognise.

Daubney even uses the exact same argument used by rape apologists to argue that the sex offenders registry is mean to men:

Let’s press the pause button and think about that: if the law were changed thus, and a wolf-whistler was tried and found guilty, they would potentially be placed on the Sex Offenders Register. There they'd join rapists and paedophiles and have their careers and perhaps lives forever ruined.

You see harming a woman and child isn't really all that big deal in comparison to ruing a mans's career. Daubney is basically arguing that perpetrators are more important than victims. This is the same thing Ched Evans' fans claim: his ability to kick a ball is more important than the fact that he chose to rape a woman.

If men don't want to be on the sex offenders registry, they can start by NOT committing sexual offences.

If men don't want to be viewed as rape apologists, deniers or complicit in the mass sexual violence of women and children, they can stand up and call out other men. They can tell men that wolf whistle that their behaviour is sexual harassment. They can call out men who make rape jokes . They can take training from anti-harassment and rape organisations to learn the skills to be effective interventionists when they view sexual violence.

Danbury suggests we don't want wolf-whistlers on the sex offenders registry because its a "kind of unforgiving justice" . What about the women who have to walk 3 blocks out of their way to avoid men harassing them whilst walking to work? Or, teenage girls who can't take public transport without being harassed by adult men for the crime of having breasts?

Why is justice only ever about men and never about the safety of women and children?

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