#ThisIsNotConsent

December 10, 2018

A recent court case has sparked outrage after the rapist of a 17-year-old girl, who he met at a club in Ireland, was acquitted of his charges due to what the victim was wearing. This a theme that we have seen throughout the course of history, igniting fury in a community that has seen too many of these cases that end in this same way. The defense attorney of the 27-year-old accused used a black, lace thong as evidence that the victim may have been open to sexual intercourse, stating “Does the evidence out-rule the possibility that she was attracted to the defendant and was open to meeting someone and being with someone? You have to look at the way she was dressed. She was wearing a thong with a lace front.” Due to attorney Elizabeth O’Connell’s “persuasive” argument, the defendant was found not guilty by the jury, causing various protests in Ireland and social media to cry out for a desperately needed change in the court system regarding rape cases.

Ruth Coppinger, a member of the Irish Parliament showing a lacy thong during the court case.

There have been various other widely-publicized cases that have resulted in the defendant to be released from their convictions due to the clothes that the victim was wearing. A similar incident was taken to the Italian supreme court in 1998, in which a driving instructor was released from his charges as his 18-year-old victim had been wearing jeans that the court ruled were difficult to take off, and the victim must have helped him take them off. The ruling is now responsible for the worldwide “Denim Day” which falls on Wednesday, April 24th of next year, in which millions of people worldwide wear jeans and other denim clothing in support of victims worldwide.

This movement is one of the many to end “victim-blaming” in rape cases, considering that we are much too advanced of a planet to rule in favor of a criminal due to the clothes that their victim was wearing. It is surprising to see the ongoing issues of our globe, especially involving heinous crimes like rape, as it simply does not seem like there would be such an issue as many of these cases are self-explanatory; the victim was the victim, and the perpetrator must be taken to court and serve the time that they should.

2 Comments

2 Responses to “#ThisIsNotConsent”

  1. Alexa Ramos on December 13th, 2018 6:21 pm

    This world is horrible for putting the blame on victims because of what they wear. Blaming the victims and letting the defendant go stops other victims from coming out and telling people what has been done to them because they are scared of getting the blame put on them.

  2. Emily Rivas on December 13th, 2018 6:44 pm

    It is an outrageous idea that the reason this 17 year old got raped was simply because she was wearing a lace thong. The attorney convinced the jury that the girl had intended to wear those to because she was attracted to the defendant, which is a back hand saying ‘you got raped because you wanted too’. Its crazy and sad that women still to this day face the struggle of always being the target. We are never the victims, we get put the blame if a man rapes us because of what we were wearing, we get put the blame if a boy is distracted i because of my presence, they even say were crazy when in reality theres so many people constantly telling you lies. It is not the 18th or 19th century, women need to stop getting the short end of the stick and we should all start getting treated equally and treated like any other human being.

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