Editor, Daily Nexus,
In response to Emily Schmidt’s column (“Confront Your Complicity,” Daily Nexus, May 9), while the “men who inflict sexual violence on women are responsible for their actions,” women are responsible for their actions as well. Schmidt is absolutely correct that rapists bear the full responsibility for their crimes. However, women do bear a responsibility to protect themselves by avoiding dangerous situations. They don’t owe this responsibility to society; they owe it to themselves.
In an ideal world, women could “be stupid, get as drunk as they want, walk home alone, pass out at a party or run around naked without fear of getting raped.” But this is the real world. Yes, we must hold rapists accountable and we should never blame the victim. But advising “sisters, daughters, friends” that avoiding excessive drinking, traveling in groups with friends, and learning self-defense is not expressing “complicity with rape culture.” These are all ways to reduce their risk of becoming victims of violent crimes and important ways of combating rape. Suggesting these methods deserves more than a response of “fuck you.”