Whilst researching online I have come to the realisation that Slut walk itself stands for so many different aspects of societal inequality. The need for change of public views on sexual assault survivors is (for me) the number one goal. It might seem obvious to state that this is not a womans issue. Like Ryan and the other speakers from Slutalk reiterated in their talks, the fact that these blaming/shaming attitudes permeate our culture means that if anything this is human issue. I feel we need to do more to address the sexual inequality in the walk.
I for one have become accustomed to having to ask for help, ask for support, seek out opportunity and I have more often than not, received it, because I am a female and I speak up, that is what modern day women are taught to do from a young age, (men are told to suck it up, be a man, give up their seat in the lifeboat, die on the front line as cannon fodder).
You see, I'm not criticising Slutwalk, I will be there with the fullest heart ready to listen, I am recognising that perhaps one of the reasons that slut walk can be 90% women marching is that in our sisterhood, in our empowerment and passion for the survivors in our plight to encourage and recognise rape victims to speak out, we are failing to reach the men who share our beliefs and message, through exclusion. I do take into consideration the psychology of taking part for any man, and how he may incorrectly be assumed to be a "victim", but why is that? Why would a man who is marching and chanting for sexual equality and a change in attitudes to survivors be self conscious with regards to being tarred with the stigma of rape? Isn't that an issue that we should be addressing in order for Slutwalks to make the change intended?
When walking on the 7th July my wish is to be surrounded by people from all walks of life, I want men, women, children and the elderly. I don't want us to be selling the cause short.
Ok, so maybe that is a pipe dream but it's something I really feel is important for the future of this movement and the possibilities for change.
I hope I have been clear in my thoughts but I do openly invite debate, my words are made with the utmost respect for everyone please trust in my sincerity Slutwalk Edinburgh 2012