Scottish PSA

(Or, Sorta Another Thursday Interruption/Midweek Media Fusion).

Look, here’s the thing. For years, I’ve had this fantasy of chucking it all and moving to Inverness, Scotland. Why Inverness? I dunno, I found it lovely and think I’d really like it there for more than a ten day stint. In general, I loved my visit to Scotland. It seems like my kinda place.

Anyway, when I came across this spot, it merely solidified an already solid affinity for Scotland, which I realize is totally redundant, but whatever:

In which a woman at a bar wearing a short skirt is, according to a bloke across the way, “asking for it” and we see her some hours prior, in a shop picking out a skirt because she’s going out to night looking to get raped, and needs an article of clothing that’ll encourage guys to force her to have sex against her will. The saleswoman advises her the blue one with sequins is much more likely to have that effect than the pink jersey one. Of course, the woman buying the “asking for it” skirt turns to the camera and says, “As if.” Then we get the PSA’s moral, which is one people still have a difficult time understanding, it would seem: Nobody asks to be raped. Ever.

*slow clap*

Comments

  1. Casey says

    Not only do I love how concise the message is, I like how the central woman of the ad is Hollywood fat/Hollywood unattractive, yet another reason I <3 TV from the UK/Scotland/etc., the people look average. :)
    (AND I ALSO LIKE DAT BLUE SKIRT~!!! :D)

  2. says

    That’s great!!

    I never understood how it’s possible to even think anyone could “ask” to be forced into something. It’s logically contradictory – if I ask for something, I want it, so I can’t possibly ask for something that is, by definition, something I didn’t want.

    Oh, right – I forget. Logic is banned as “elitism” in North America. Well, damn.

  3. Dani says

    One would think that this would be an easy concept to understand, but I’ve heard people say that dressing “provocatively” can be the extra “push” a rapist needs to go after his victim (all while swearing up and down that they’re not victim-blaming) :/

  4. says

    Dani,

    And the thing is, that’s not even based in fact. http://www.usu.edu/saavi/pdf/myths_facts.pdf [pdf link] says that most rapists don’t recall what their victims were wearing. I have heard that stranger rapists actually go for victims wearing sweats*, just because those clothes are easy to pull off in a hurry. So… we should all be in stilettos and spandex…? Just kidding, but I do wish if people are going to purport to advise women on how to “avoid” rape, they would at least read some of the vast research available on how rapists target victims. But then they’d have to advise that women, and especially young girls, never co-habitate with men, even if they’re related. Alternatively, they could take a hard look at how society needs to change.

    *ETA: I never could trace the source for that claim, so it may be based on nothing much, but it makes such practical sense – and successful criminals would need to be practical – that I think it’s interesting to think about nonetheless.

  5. says

    Oh, very nice! You’d think I would’ve seen that one, being as I’m currently living in Scotland and all. (Not Inverness, though. Never been to Inverness.)

  6. Ida says

    Jennifer Kesler:
    I never understood how it’s possible to even think anyone could “ask” to be forced into something. It’s logically contradictory – if I ask for something, I want it, so I can’t possibly ask for something that is, by definition, something I didn’t want.

    You forgot, when women say no, they mean yes. Because that totally makes sense and isn’t massively convenient at all. I wish I could apply that thinking in everyday life.
    Me: Nice car. Can I have it?
    Some person: What? No!
    Me: Awesome! Thanks.

    Later, after getting arrested for car theft…
    Me: Oh, when he said I couldn’t have his car, he actually meant it? Well, how was I supposed to know that?

  7. sbg says

    Dani,
    It is easy to understand. I often wonder if that whole thing is pulled out because people only believe what they want to or some sort of perverse “I’m not really a rapist victim blaming bullshit” to ease whatever conscience might be left.

    ETA: Rather, society being unwilling or unable to see the men as the perps, so excusing it away. It’s a deeply ingrained reaction in our rape culture, no?

  8. says

    I once read a book on rape culture. Now I have no clue what it was called or anything, but it had chapters from various writers. This one guy (can’t remember his name, either, sorry) described himself as a Baby Boomer. He said some really interesting and horrifying things:

    –When he was a boy/teen, no one would talk to kids about sex, except other kids.
    –From the locker room, he learned that “no” didn’t mean “no” – if a girl REALLY didn’t want you to fuck her, she would hit you.
    –In hindsight, years later, he realize no one had let women in on this little social convention.
    –And then he had a creeping sense of horror, and had to go over his own sexual history to figure out if he’d inadvertently raped anybody.

    This is just a script bullies tell themselves so that when they bully something out of somebody, they don’t feel bad. Then they tell it to OTHER people, in hopes of creating a social norm, and, you know, it works. Why does it work? That’s debatable, but my theory is:

    Rapist: Just remember women are whores and blame them for everything.
    Average Non-thinker: That’s very simple.
    Thinkers: Actually, all humans come in lots of varieties, and you have to research a situation before you can know what it is, because appearances can be deceiving –
    Average Non-thinker: Jeez, I’ll never remember all that. Women are whores, blame the women. Yeah, that I can handle.

  9. Dani says

    sbg:
    Dani,
    It is easy to understand. I often wonder if that whole thing is pulled out because people only believe what they want to or some sort of perverse “I’m not really a rapist victim blaming bullshit” to ease whatever conscience might be left.

    ETA: Rather, society being unwilling or unable to see the men as the perps, so excusing it away. It’s a deeply ingrained reaction in our rape culture, no?

    I agree. And, once something is as deeply ingrained in our culture as rape myths are, it’s easier to believe the lie than to learn the truth, because facing reality would mean realizing the huge overhall that needs to take place in our culture and society.

    Jennifer: I’m glad that author was able to realize that what he had heard about girls and consent was totally wrong and messed up.

    And I think your theory is pretty on-point. People I’ve talked to who believe certain myths about rape keep going back to them, even when faced with facts that clearly state otherwise.

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