Oh look, the NSW Police Commissioner, Andrew Scipione, is a rape apologist: Girls’ drink pact:
YOUNG women planning a night out should tell their friends if they plan to have sex to avoid unwanted and potentially dangerous drunken encounters, the NSW Police Commissioner, Andrew Scipione, has warned.
What’s a rape apologist? Well, I’m glad you asked. Finally, A Feminism 101 Blog has a wonderfully clear definition, that even people like Andrew Scipione should be able to understand:
The simple answer is that a rape apology is any argument that boils down to the myth that rapists can be provoked into raping by what the victim does or does not do.
Most people who make such arguments are not consciously intending to defend rapists. They are simply repeating arguments they have heard before and haven’t fully examined.
Clearly Scipione was sleeping through the several months of mainstream media coverage about SlutWalk. But it does go some way towards explaining why we still have police officers who believe rape myths.
While the non-drinking Police Commissioner is retreating from his earlier calls to raise the legal drinking age from 18, now he is calling on young women to “look out for your mates”.
Yes, telling people – not just young women – to look out for your mates is a good thing, but most people already do that. It’s a bit frightening to think that NSW Police’s anti-rape strategy is “hey women, don’t get drunk and you won’t get raped, but if you do get drunk and raped then you should take responsibility for your actions”. Not only is that offensive victim-blaming, but it’s telling women that they will be safe from sexual assault if they don’t get drunk, and that is simply bullshit. Scipione would know that.
Mr Scipione pointed The Sun-Herald to a soon-to-be-published study of 235 female university students, aged 18 to 25.
One-quarter drank twice a week and the same number drank heavily in a single session at least four times a month, the University of Wollongong study found.
Those who drank heavily were more likely to find themselves in dangerous sexual situations. And yet almost half said they never, rarely or only sometimes used a condom during sex.
I don’t know if Scipione doesn’t get it, or if the journalists – Nick Ralston, Saffron Howden – don’t get it, but unsafe consensual sex is not the same thing as sexual assault.
About 3000 people aged 15 to 24 are admitted to Australian hospitals each year for acute intoxication. Between the late 1990s and 2005-06, the rate of young women being admitted to hospital doubled.
That statistic is meaningless if you don’t give a figure. For all we know, there could have been only five women admitted to hospital for acute intoxication during the 90s, so for that to double in a decade is hardly cause for wringing of hands over young women not behaving like ladies anymore.
“In the past we always saw this overuse, the abuse, the drunken behaviour, the violent behaviour, the stupid behaviour … that was predominantly the domain of young men,” Mr Scipione said. “It’s not that way any more.
“It’s now unfortunately something that’s seen as cool: to be drunk as a young woman. For the life of me, I don’t know what’s that attractive about some young woman vomiting in the gutter at 3am after a big night.”
What’s attractive? Judgey Scipione, who gives a shit about what you find attractive? A woman’s purpose is not to be attractive at all times, just in case a man happens to look at her. If all you have to offer the public discussion around binge drinking is that you think it makes young women look unattractive, then we need a new Police Commissioner. One who thinks with his brain, not his penis.
Mr Scipione, the father of two sons and a daughter, said he wanted young women to take responsibility for their safety when drinking before they became victims of crime.
When you tell women that they are personally responsible for whether or not someone else commits a violent crime, you’re letting the criminal off the hook. You’re giving them an excuse for what they did. I wonder if he tells his son not to rape women?
Here’s the thing, NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione. I’ll stop blogging and tweeting about you being a rape apologist if your rape prevention strategy starts to prominently involve the following:
“Hey guys, when you go out tonight, DON’T RAPE ANYONE”.