In honor of sexual assault awareness month, here is a satirical video (note: features robots) from Sociological Images that pokes fun at the way we tell women how not to be sexually assaulted. Instead, it outlines a way we can tell men how not to sexually assault:
Top Ten Strategies That Are Guaranteed To Stop Rape Every Time
1. When you see a woman walking alone after dark do not assault her.
2. As a general rule do not have sex with someone unless they are awake and agree to what is happening
3. Always use the buddy system. If you do not think you can resist the urge to sexually assault someone, ask a friend to accompany you when you go out in public or to parties.
4. When buying someone a drink, deliver the beverage to them without adding a roofie or any other drug.
5. If your date or anyone else falls asleep on your couch while walking a movie, remember to not assault them.
6. The best course of actions when entering a woman's house is to wait for her to invite you in through the front door. Try to resist the urge to crawl through an open window or an unlocked rear door.
7. Always carry a rape whistle and pepper spray. When you feel the urge to rape someone blow the whistle so that your buddy from strategy number 3 can call for help. If help does not arrive fast enough, spray the pepper spray directly into your eyes.
8. If you are hired by a woman to perform a service at her house, be sure to provide the requested service and then exit the house without raping her.
9. If you find yourself following a woman in her car, immediately turn your car in the direction of the nearest police or fire station station and notify authorities about your desire to rape. Also before you leave a parking lot, be sure to check your back seat for any one who you might be trying to abduct and sexually assault. Set any unwilling passengers free without assaulting them before driving away.
10. Watch for signs of miscommunication with friends. If somebody asks to spend the night at your house or asks them to walk you across campus at night it is probably an indication that they think you will not rape them. Clearly state your intentions so they know what to expect. Also be sure to send clear signals about your desires before going on a date. Let the other person know that you expect the evening to end with a sexual assault. If you do not clearly indicate your intentions, the other person may misinterpret it as a sign that you do not intend to sexually assault them.
Instead of constantly victim blaming, we need to realize that "the only person who can prevent a sexual assault is the person who is going to commit it." We tell people not murder rather than not to get murdered. Why can't we use this same principal when it comes to rape?
While, these rules are intended as jokes, at the same time they should be taken seriously. Although you assume these principles to be common sense, obviously they are not as widely understood taking into account the amount of sexual assault that happens. We need to encourage potential rapists to stop and think about these principles before they act.
photos courtesy of padraicyclops via Flickr and amazon.com.