We’ve already written about the Daily Mail once today. This time it’s a tad more serious, however.
In a spiteful article about Rihanna, Mail columnist Liz Jones writes that the pop star is a “toxic role model” for young fans because she glories in “drugs, guns and sleaze”.
The killer line comes some way down the piece, however:
“All these qualities pale to nothing when we know she went back to her abusive boyfriend, Chris Brown, who pleaded guilty to assaulting her in 2009; that she promotes drug-taking, drinking and the sort of fashion sense on stage that surely invites rape at worst, disrespect at least.”
What exactly is a fashion sense that “invites rape”?
Ms Jones appears to be saying that there are certain clothes (or lack of) which, if worn, invite (to act so as to bring on or render probable) violent sexual assault.
If this sounds familiar, it’s because it’s rape apologism – the stuff that usually comes out of the mouths of…rapists.
Claiming that dressing a certain way invites rape is about as stupid as saying that being gay “invites” being assaulted by homophobes.
It’s also bizarre considering that conservatives enjoy talking so much about personal responsibility – what about, you know, the responsibility of those who actually rape?
As I wrote last week, the idea that a woman can dress how she pleases without being violently assaulted remains, in some quarters at least, a revolutionary one.