Would you walk two miles across London city, declaring yourself as a slut? Well that’s exactly what 5000 women (and a few men thrown in too) did this past month. The protesters were involved in the UK’s first ever SlutWalk.
The SlutWalk first came about in Canada after a male police officer told women that they should stop dressing like sluts to avoid being raped. The officer, who was giving a lecture to Law students in Toronto, caused global outrage and thousands of women gathered Canada’s capital and formed the first ever SlutWalk.
The message that women are trying to convey is that women have the right to wear (or not wear) whatever they like without facing sexual harassment. Blaming victims, some women say, has no place in 2011.
With this strong message behind them, thousands of women dressed in as little as underwear marched from Hyde Park to Trafalgar Square with message boards reading: “Yes means Yes, No means No; however we dress, wherever we go!”
Despite the upbeat and positive vibe that day, the protest has caused controversy because of its name. However organisation Rape Crisis, who is involved in SlutWalk, has said that the women are trying to reclaim the word slut, so it’s no longer used in a derogatory manor.
London isn’t the only city getting involved. Walks have already taken place in New York, Mexico City, Delhi among others. And although each city’s walk is different the message stays the same; with organisers saying that the campaign will carry on until rape conviction increases and victims get justice.