Well, Captain, you did it again. Despite your ministers, staunch supporters, and other party members who struggled to defend you the last time you were a rape advocate, you have proven that you do blame women for rape.
You didn’t let anyone change their mind, neither the public outcry, nor the international horror, nor even your supporters twisting your words to hide your meaning. And this time you spoke in English, leaving no room for ambiguity.
We would commend you for staying true to yourself if only the words you spoke weren’t so problematic.
Women all over Pakistan can rest assured that if someone rapes them, our Prime Minister will say it is the fault of the “temptation”, not the rapist. Would it be the same for children?
In an interview with Jonathan Swan for Axios, the Prime Minister was asked about his previous comments about temptation, women’s clothing and the “will of men and how he was accused of blaming the victims of rape.
Imran, sweeping it aside as nonsense, said the concept of purdah is to avoid temptation in society. But then he explained how Pakistani society works and that’s where he lost the plot.
“We don’t have nightclubs here, we don’t have nightclubs, so it’s a whole different society, the way of life here, so if you increase the temptation in society to the point and all of these young people have nowhere to go, it has consequences in society. ”
The interviewer asked him bluntly if what women wear had an effect. This is where our Prime Minister really went off the rails.
“If a woman wears very little clothing, it will have an impact, it will impact men, unless they’re robots. I mean her common sense.”
Is that common sense, PM Imran? Do you think men are so weak and out of control that the slightest sign of skin will plunge them into a violent sexual crisis?
When asked if women’s clothing would really provoke acts of sexual violence, the Prime Minister instead of saying “No, rape is not provoked”, he replied: “It depends on the society in which you live in. If in a society where people haven’t seen this kind of thing, it will have an impact on them.
These are the friends, our Prime Minister in all his glory.
If you still have doubts as to whether the Prime Minister is an apologist for rape, let us disillusion you with this notion.
A rape apologist is someone who excuses, tolerates or justifies rape. When Prime Minister Imran says women wearing “very little clothes” will have an impact on men, he says men will rape you if you don’t wear the clothes they want you to wear. For our Oxford-trained prime minister, clothes “cause” rape. What were the children and animals raped in Pakistan wearing then, we ask.
Obviously, he must have an answer for that.
Men are not robots, he said, as if any sane man would attack a woman on the basis of her clothes. If you weren’t insulted before, you should be now. Imran Khan seems to have little respect for rape victims and it seems he doesn’t think much of men either. He thinks there is nothing the men can do about it: they will see a woman in “very little clothes” and attack. He sees men as little better as rabid dogs eyeing meat for the first time in days. Think about it.
And for the people who say, oh but he talks about “very little clothing”, let us ask you this: what constitutes “very little clothing”? Is that a bikini? Or jeans and a T-shirt? Or shalwar kameez without dupatta? Or a hijab without an abaya? Or an abaya without a face cover?
We will say it again and again: there is no justification for rape, not the victim’s clothes, shoes, hair, style of walking, way of speaking or whatever.
He should also keep in mind that by pushing this problematic tale of “young men” with no outlet for their sexual urges, he is giving rapists and stalkers an excuse on a silver platter. And they are not all “young men”! As the recent case of sexual abuse of Mufti Azizur Rehman proved, rape is a crime perpetrated by anyone in positions of power.
At the very least, the Prime Minister could have kept this heart-wrenching case on his mind while answering questions about rape and temptation and remembered that although there is never a time to be an apologist rape is an even worse time than usual. The trauma of rape is immense and it resurfaces every time a rape advocate provides what in their mind is a reason for the violence.
To our Premier, we have some heartfelt requests: 1) Think, really think, about the impact your words have on sexual assault survivors and their families. You’ve reduced their pain to something as vague as temptation and don’t seem to have concrete answers as to how you plan to approach this issue or do them justice. 2) Talk to women and really listen. Women are fiddled with in societies that have “discos and nightclubs” and women who wear abaya, hijab and veil have also been victims of sexual violence. Stop putting all the burden of sexual violence on women and the way they dress.
If you don’t know what women in this society go through no matter what they wear, and you’re going to lump all men into the category of ‘unable to control their sexual urges’, then you, Imran Khan, don’t. are not fit to represent this company you are talking about.
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