Thursday, March 12, 2015

My Body is My House - A Guest Post

Suppose someone has a house. A really nice house. And in that house, they have some valuables. Maybe not anything different from valuables anyone in a nice house might have. Maybe they have a huge security system, even a hired guard and a tremendous watch dog.

Then suppose someone breaks into that house and steals the valuables. Whose fault is it?

Maybe the security company wasn’t doing their job and the theft is the consequence of their negligence. Maybe the owner forgot to alarm the security system. Or maybe everything was done exactly right and the thief still found a way to break in and get everything.

It doesn’t matter how it happened. The thief is the one who committed the crime.

Now suppose that they have no security system. Suppose that they paint the house in vivid colors. Maybe they decorate the house in such a way as to draw attention to all entry points--the windows, the doors. Maybe there’s a ladder leaning against the house. Maybe they never lock their doors. Maybe everyone around knows that there are valuables inside.

That wouldn’t exactly be the best way of protecting the valuables. But if a thief breaks in and steals everything, maybe the homeowners could have protected their home better, but ultimately, who is the criminal? Whose fault is it?

The thief. The thief is the one who committed the crime.

But what if the homeowner was in the habit of handing out valuables? What if they invited people over regularly and gave away their valuables? What if this is something that everyone knew? What if they even invited a specific person over, but right before the person was about to come in they said, “You know what? I’ve changed my mind. I don’t want to give you some of my valuables.”

If the person forced their way in and stole valuables anyway, would that person still be a criminal?

Of course. Even if the things were promised to them, they still ultimately stole them.

What if they had been invited in before? What if the homeowner invited someone in, gave them valuables, and told them they could come back another time and get more. If the person came back and was told, “No, you can’t come in and get valuables today.” If they forced their way in shouting, “You promised!” and took the valuables anyway, what then?

Then they still broke in and stole. They still committed a crime.

What if the house wasn’t that nice? What if the valuables weren’t very valuable? Does any of that matter?

No. The thief is still a thief no matter what. The thief is still the criminal. And the homeowner who fails to protect his home may be advised how better to protect his home--”Hey, maybe don’t invite criminals into your home or advertise your valuables around so every criminal knows about them?”--but ultimately, it is not the homeowner who committed a crime. It is the thief.

So, tell me again why you think rape is the victim’s fault?

-Written by Karolyne Sloma

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