Two weeks ago, Laurah Lukin ran a half marathon.
She set a goal for herself and exceeded it, with her friends, husband and daughter cheering her on at the finish line.
Proud of her achievement, she posted an image to Facebook – a look of determination in her eye as her legs hit the pavement in the Little Miami Half Marathon.
Only that’s not what one commenter chose to focus on. Rather, he felt her choice of outfit invited being ‘raped’.
“This morning, I woke up to a notification that I was tagged in a race photo on Facebook. Interested to see how the day had been captured, I clicked it and was left speechless by several comments from a man I do not know,” the mum and university professor captioned the image of her wearing leopard print shorts and a running singlet.
Under the image, the man wrote: “That’s because she doesn’t have any damn clothes on and she’s running for her life…No wonder joggers get raped.”
Elaborating on her blog, Laurah explained her first instinct was to defend her outfit choice, before realising she doesn’t have to defend anything to anyone.
“I was immediately disappointed that my gut reaction to this man’s horrific comments was to defend my wardrobe choice. After all, there were photos from the race of shirtless men, men in short shorts, men in tight shorts; yet he did not feel motivated to comment on their potential for inviting sexual assault,” she wrote.
“It is not my responsibility to choose a race outfit or workout apparel to deter the temptation of men. The length of my shorts is not an indication of interest, invitation or consent. NOBODY asks to be raped.”
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Since sharing her story, women around the world have identified with and supported Laurah. “You are dressed for the activity of working out. Obviously he has the issue, not you,” wrote one commenter from Australia. “Sorry you had to experience this,” wrote another.
Unfortunately being put in his place wasn’t enough to quieten the original commenter, with the man calling Laurah an “easily offended snowflake”.
To that, she had just one message: “With enough snowflakes, you can cause an avalanche that transforms the landscape.”
Have you ever been victim blamed for your choice of outfit? What was your response?
For more stories on kickarse parents, try these.
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