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Posted on Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 1:30 p.m.

SlutWalk comes to Ann Arbor next weekend

By Kyle Feldscher

An international movement of people who wish to eradicate victim-blaming from conversations about sexual assault will be coming to Ann Arbor next weekend.


The Facebook page for the Ann Arbor SlutWalk event.

SlutWalk began earlier this year after a representative from the Toronto Police Service said “women should avoid dressing like sluts in order not to be victimized” by sexual predators, according to a Facebook event. Now, Ann Arbor will be getting its own SlutWalk from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Oct. 22 on The Diag.

The goal of SlutWalk is to show the general public that blaming victims of sexual assault for the crimes committed against them is not OK, according to organizers.

“Being assaulted is not about what you wear; it’s not even about sex,” the notice for the event states. “But, using a pejorative term to rationalize inexcusable behavior creates an environment in which it’s okay to blame the victim.”

SlutWalk follows a string of sexual assaults that occurred throughout the summer in Ann Arbor. There have been seven possibly-related sexual assaults in the city since July, and police have received hundreds of tips related to the crimes.

SlutWalks have been held in in cities throughout the U.S. and Canada, including New York City, Boston, Washington D.C. and Ottawa, Ontario.

Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.


Tony Dearing

Fri, Oct 14, 2011 : 2:06 p.m.

A comment was removed because of name-calling.


Fri, Oct 14, 2011 : 4:02 a.m.

I think cinnabar's comment that if someone chooses to dress in an attractive way, that they've asked for whatever happens to them and I think that way of thinking is shameful and archaic. A woman or man should be able to dress attractively and not have to worry about being attacked for it. And that, to me, is what slutwalk is all about - making a political statement to protest attacks and to bring more awareness to the issue. If you don't think it will do any good, then you should also be against the entire Tea Party and the Wall Street Protesters, anti-war protesters (past and present) and people who march or walk for cures for breast cancer and HIV. In other words, no, these marches and protests won't necessarily cure the problem, but they can unite a community, spark dialogue and hopefully lead to change. Good thing cinnabar didn't try to stop MLK from marching to Selma. And as far as wearing a Rolex late at night in a dangerous neighborhood, yeah, that's a choice that one should think twice about. Likewise, walking into a dangerous neighborhood no matter how you're dressed can be fraught with trouble. But a person should be able to walk down Main Street dressed however they want that doesn't violate current public indecency laws (for their benefit, not because I care) without fear of being attacked for their way of dressing, for their gender, for their gender expression or what have you. Dressing in a way that attracts attention does not equal permission to attack.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 5:07 p.m.

Seriously Slutwalk? Double you tee eff!?


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 2:51 p.m.

i thought the SlutWalk started in august?


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 1:36 p.m.

Kinda cold to dress like a slut, but hey, if they are up for it, who am I to criticize? I guess the naked mile sometime got a bit chilly too. You go, girl!


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 5:16 a.m.

Lot's of concern for a comment made by a trained police officer that could prevent an assault. I just don't get it. In Kenya they still mutilate the genitals of young girls...where's that protest march taking place. In Afganistan they just stoned a young couple for defying a prearranged marriage.....where's that walk takiing place? Iran want to completelyeradicat4e the Jew and deny the holocost even occurred. Where's that walk? Instead our citizens want to protest a "comment" in a free speech country. What a waste. Americans are getting dumber and dumber. If you purposely stepout in front of a bus and expect it to stop.......your expectations defy common sense.


Fri, Oct 14, 2011 : 12:01 a.m.

Seriously? On what possible grounds was my comment that called out a previous commenter's racism and xenophobia deleted? Let's try it again. You are derailing the conversation from the original topic by laying out a false dichotomy between rape prevention and things that occur abroad. Lots of people do protest FGM in Africa and the Middle East--why do you suppose you are even aware of this issue? The existence of other injustices elsewhere doesn't mean that the rapes that occur with great frequency in this country aren't worthy of attention, does it? Also, no one is suggesting that the police officer who made the original remark should be subject to criminal liability for his statement, so his free speech rights aren't at issue. He is also within his rights to state that he hates all members of a particular race, but he shouldn't expect to be able to make such remarks in his official capacity without being criticized. Obviously, while the movement may have been spawned by this one remark in particular, it is the (prevalent) attitudes that underlie such remarks in general that participants want to address.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 6:39 p.m.

"If you purposely stepout in front of a bus and expect it to stop.......your expectations defy common sense." Does this have something to do with sexual assault, at all?


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:37 p.m.

For starters, you could organize one of the walks you are looking for. I'm sure lots of people would appreciate that, instead of whining about it.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 3:34 a.m.

This is foolish. These women need to get over their oversized egos. Just a bunch of silly women (not ladies) acting and looking like fools. Geez--- get over it already and go out and get a life..


Fri, Oct 14, 2011 : 3:32 a.m.

And I'm sure they would be heartbroken to learn you disparagingly calling them "women" rather than "ladies." Apparently a rally intended to serve the cause of educating the public about sexual assault prevention falls short of 19th-century guidelines for feminine behavior.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:35 p.m.

Such a selfish yet ultimately self-defeating attitude. I bet you vote Republican.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 4:10 a.m.

Yes, what hubris! Not wanting to get raped and all!


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 2:41 a.m.

Those of you who insist on comparing sexual assault to theft and other property crimes really, really need to reexamine your views on women and on human sexuality. I can't be the only one who finds it disturbing that rape is being compared with the theft of Rolexes and laptops--not because rape is worse than theft, although of course it is, but because you are suggesting that sex is a commodity and miniskirts are a full-page ad that that commodity is there for the asking (or the not-asking, if one is a rapist).


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 1:25 a.m.

I'm having a difficult time with the name SlutWalk. Yeah, I get it... stickin it to the folks that blame the victim. But yes, I'll support getting the message out to be informed, supportive, and safe. I'm a survivor of a home invasion that involved a weapon, many years ago, so maybe I'm hypersensitive to the name of the walk. My support in spirit to all who particiapte! Cinnabar, unless I'm misunderstanding your point, you're blaming the victim and that's offensive.


Fri, Oct 14, 2011 : 3:23 a.m.

You weren't misunderstanding. Suggesting that the onus, or even part of the onus, is on potential victims to avoid being attacked is blaming the victim, even if one also says one primarily blames the attacker. Suggesting that "not dressing like a slut" is a useful method of rape avoidance suggests that women who are raped while dressed provocatively could have avoided their rapes and that women whose clothing choices are unknown may have contributed to their rapes. It also fails the whole "relationship to everything known about reality" test.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:34 p.m.

Ellen not sure how you got to that conclusion, but that is your right. I was just saying we have to live with our choices whether they are right or wrong. I teach my kids there are perps out there and we dont have to make their jobs easier. If you want to call that blaming the victim its your choices. And so you dont twist my words even more I do support life sentences for rapists and that includes first timers.

Tom Joad

Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:43 a.m.

Amateur hour naming of a serious issue.

rusty shackelford

Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:07 a.m.

Am I the only one who thinks it'd be awesome if they scheduled a zombie walk at the same date and time?


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 3:01 p.m.

I kind of like that idea. A Day of the Dead walk. Sluts vs Zombies. Interesting.

lindsay erin

Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:58 p.m.

I think that's a great idea--perhaps they can start on different ends of the street and end in the middle. A nice zombie/slut mix.

Chris 8 - YPSI PRIDE

Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 11:49 p.m.

Will the A2 Utilities Department be prepared? There will be an unusual amount of cold water being drained from showers that day. Keep the pipes clear !


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 3:35 a.m.

your assuming that there might be some attractive women -- ever been to a nude beach?


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 9:13 p.m.

okay, so what is this "slut walk" going to consist of? A bunch of girls dressed "slutty" and strutting through the diag? All of the guys are gonna enjoy this event...

Macabre Sunset

Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 4:09 a.m.

I heard many not-too-polite comments about the event in Boston. Apparently, the ratio of women you'd want to see in slutty attire was rather low. Generally, I don't think this is a great form of protest. It attracts attention, but not to the cause itself.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 3:37 a.m.

Well-- I made this comment on another post ---- your assumption is that there will be attractive women in this event -- ever been to a nude beach?


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 9:30 p.m.

What happens if they like this so much they go home and........?

Blanch DuBois

Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 8:44 p.m.

If you're wearing a hockey sweater does it mean you're looking to be checked into the boards? If you're sporting a baseball cap should I feel free to throw my fastball at you? If you're wearing a football jersey I guess it's okay for me and eleven of my friends to tackle you? Cause were just *asking for it*.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 11:15 a.m.

Ooops, I should've read down further. My point as well.

Macabre Sunset

Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 4:07 a.m.

Ten of your friends, not eleven. If you and eleven friends tackle the victim, you'll get a five-yard penalty. But, yeah, I'm disgusted with the responses here. They don't even make sense. Women have breasts. We know they have breasts. Whether they're covered with tight clothing or loose clothing, are women still to blame if they're attacked? It's not like cars and laptops, because every car does not contain a laptop.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 3:39 a.m.

if your walking around with a jar of vasaline then.........


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 9:16 p.m.

All are perfectly exceptably and legal responses. Becareful what you wear. LOL Just sayin.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 8:24 p.m.

So, in the name of calling out, if not stupidity, unfinished analogies: "If I left my car unlocked with my laptop in full-view and I got it stolen, you wouldn't blame me. However, It's not a good idea to keep valuable items in a car in full-view. It will be attractive to thieves." Is the use of the term "thieves" most analogous to: A. "rapists" B. "innocent men who can't help themselves when they see scantily clad women and so should be acquitted of rape"


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 7:45 p.m.

I support the rights of the people who want to do this. I am sorry that in this day and age it still seems to be necessary. I wish that the world were a different place and this was not needed at all.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 7:37 p.m.

I don't blame the victims in any case of rape. However, I will call out stupidity. Getting drunk and wearing little clothing at some random night club or bar is just asking for trouble. If I left my car unlocked with my laptop in full-view and I got it stolen, you wouldn't blame me. However, It's not a good idea to keep valuable items in a car in full-view. It will be attractive to thieves. It's the same thing with women that dress "slutty". While it's not their fault if they get raped, they also shouldn't be shocked or surprised if they attract the wrong kind of attention. It's just common sense.

Urban Sombrero

Fri, Oct 14, 2011 : 3:09 a.m.

@cinnabar, No, I wasn't making "accuses" about the attacker. I meant that sarcastically. See the follow up statement in my post, "Place the blame squarely where it belongs: on the man who makes a conscious choice to violate a woman."


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 11:14 a.m.

It's an issue of responsibility. Women do wear certain types of clothing to get attention, that's true. However, it is the responsibility of others to keep their actions in check and respect other people. A woman wearing a miniskirt does not mean she is asking for sex (and rape isn't even about sex, but that's another issue altogether) and it should not be interpreted as such. If I wear a hockey jersey to the mall, do I need to be afraid that someone may check me into the wall?


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:09 a.m.

And like a lot of things that are "just common sense," it isn't true. There is no correlation between "slutty" clothing and "the wrong kind of attention," which I imagine is your little euphemism for brutal stranger rape.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 9:47 p.m.

How does this apply to a woman who is raped while walking home at night after work or studying and who is wearing a baggy sweatshirt and sweatpants? or the 90 year old woman who is raped in her home while wearing an old flannel nightgown? or the man who is raped by another man? Rape is an act of power over another human being. It has nothing to do with sexuality.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 9:13 p.m.

"It's not the victim's fault that the attacker can't control his primal urges." Your wording implys its not the attacker fault either because he CANT control his primal urges, I guessing you meant he chosses not to control his primal urges. I hope you're not making acuses for the attacker.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 8:38 p.m.

James, women are not laptops.

Urban Sombrero

Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 8:36 p.m.

NEWSFLASH: Not every woman who's raped is scantily clad. And, even if she is, so what? It's not the victim's fault that the attacker can't control his primal urges. Place the blame squarely where it belongs: on the man who makes a conscious choice to violate a woman.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 7:29 p.m.

How is this any different than Halloween on campus?


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 2:57 p.m.

It isn't. But maybe the students might get some Halloween ideas?


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:35 p.m.

Ok so why does a stupid comment made in a different city, different country, merit a demonstration here ?


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:11 a.m.

"An international movement of people who wish to eradicate victim-blaming from conversations about sexual assault will be coming to Ann Arbor next weekend." Because it's an international movement, maybe? And because Toronto isn't the only city with these issues?


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 8:34 p.m.

ThaKillaBee....Nope not one bit.I know people say a lot of stupid things.I also know what is wrong is wrong.And I'm not all that smart


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 8:16 p.m.

Because, believe it or not, there are people in our community who share the same opinion about women. I'd argue that by asking that question, their demonstration is already successful in raising your awareness.

say it plain

Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:26 p.m.

"False advertising' that's funny... But ironically (or not!) that's exactly the idea they're railing against: the idea that a victim of sexual assault would be accused of 'false advertising' if she happened to be showing some skin, or even some sexuality!, when she was attacked. Or at any time prior to her being attacked, probably, in some cases where a victim of assault is impugned as a 'slut' by the 'defense'. All personal responsibility for rape lies with the rapist. I'm not going to argue that negotiating sexual situations is always a perfectly straight-forward interpersonal act, but there's no way that *any* form of dress or undress serves in itself as a signal that someone is "asking" to be *used* sexually (you'd have to accept, for instance, that staring at a hot babe would justify her issuing a kick-to-the-groin if you maintained that it *did* serve as such a signal, or else subscribe to the whole cover-your-women-and-don't-look-at-them! social schema, if you didn't agree!) !


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:07 p.m.

I think it'd be more effective for all of these people to walk to Toronto and punch the police spokesman in the head.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:05 p.m.

Instead of holding it on the Diag in the middle of the day why don't they do it in a parking structure or an alley after 11pm? That will get the perps' attention then they can educate him on all he's done wrong.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 2:56 p.m.

Maybe they should build round parking structures to keep the devil from lurking in the corners? Just a thought.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 9:42 p.m.

It is because so many people believe the perp has the right to be lurking in the garage waiting for a woman dressed to scintillate him.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:04 p.m.

This is the biggest case of false advertising since The Neverending Story

Lionel Hutz

Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 7:58 p.m.

I'm preparing to file a class action suit!

Top Cat

Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 5:55 p.m.

Sorry but this is an awful name for a worthy cause, I don't care what its origin is. Someone failed Marketing 101.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 7:05 p.m.

Fine, but it isn't "failing Marketing 101" when your name is catchy enough to spawn an international movement, even if the whole world is wrong. The name conveys that the participants reject as meaningless the pejorative label "slut" itself, rather than simply rejecting the notion that "sluts" are asking to get raped. This wouldn't be accomplished if they used the name "InnocentVictimWalk."

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:22 p.m.

"It's actually really popular all over the world. So you may want to think about going back to school." I call this, "Lemming logic." it means nothing, except that the rest of the world is wrong, too. If the rest of the world jumped off a cliff, would you do it, too?


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:08 a.m.

The point. You have missed it.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 8:22 p.m.

for those of us that are not sluts, but victims none-the-less, perhaps there will be a walk for us as well...I agree what a poor image of furthering a cause.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:19 p.m.

I don't.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:18 p.m.

Enzo sluts are popular all over the world. But I think the message gets lost with the name.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:03 p.m.

It's actually really popular all over the world. So you may want to think about going back to school.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 5:44 p.m.

So if I wear a nice Rolex into the hood and get robbed nobodys going to blame me? i like the idea of no personal responsibity.


Fri, Oct 14, 2011 : 3:13 a.m.

@EyeHeartA2 Before your comment gets deleted for being a personal attack, what are you talking about? Where is the other "half of the test" I didn't answer? Facts are still not opinions. The consensus of researchers in a particular discipline is not "opinion." Women are still not raped because they are dressed provocatively. If you had a point, you wouldn't need to hide behind "blah, blah" and "haha your user name is funny."


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 10:15 p.m.

cinnabar, does this hypothetical Rolex thief deserve to get arrested? Maybe not, since the crime was your fault.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 7:07 p.m.

His analogy wasn't implying that rape only happens in the ghetto. I'm guessing cinnabar means something to the effect that "although you should be able to be a woman and walk around in any area at 4 in the morning, it might not be wise to do so if there is a history of crime or attacks in the area". It's like when people go swimming right after a shark attack---can you do it? By all means. Should you do it? .....Anyway, bottom line, hopefully at least this event will focus attention to the attacks and reminds people (especially those that were not here in the summer) to not become too lax in their safety.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 7:01 p.m.

&quot;&quot;There is a correlation between&quot; .......blah, blah Usually, when people use them there fancy words like &quot;correlation&quot;, it is followed by DATA. I assume you have some to share. Otherwise, they usually say or imply it is just an opinion.; Correlation is not a &quot;fancy&quot; word to anyone with a GED or above. True, I didn't prove that no one will steal a Rolex that you aren't wearing, but logic will get you some distance in life. However, as this article isn't about Rolexes, you should rather look for the person claiming a relationship between provocative clothing and rape to be providing your DATA for you. The fact that your Google appears to be broken does not make fact into opinion. However, here you go: <a href="" rel='nofollow'>;+Pol%27y+125</a> According to this study's findings, rapists target women who appear to be passive and submissive, qualities associated with body-concealing clothing rather than provocative attire. --- <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> &quot;men report perceiving the sexualized look as indicating an interest in sex and intent to seduce, whereas women cite their wish to feel and look attractive as its primary cause, while entirely rejecting the seduction claim. {...} in reality there is no connection between style of dress and sexual victimization of any sort.&quot; These are not selective. I found no DATA suggesting that rapists target women who dress provocatively, although some DATA that people assume this happens. Your turn.

Kassandra Frost

Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 4:52 p.m.

To add on to the argument that rapes are more often perpetrated by relatives or acquaintances, they also don't only happen in the ghetto. Case in point, the 7 or so incidents that have happened recently in A2, one of the purportedly best cities to live in in the U.S.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 1:32 p.m.

&quot;There is a correlation between&quot; .......blah, blah Usually, when people use them there fancy words like &quot;correlation&quot;, it is followed by DATA. I assume you have some to share. Otherwise, they usually say or imply it is just an opinion.


Thu, Oct 13, 2011 : 12:07 a.m.

There is a correlation between having an expensive item in plain view and people wanting to rob you. There is no demonstrated correlation between a woman getting assaulted and what she was wearing. Fail.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 9:57 p.m.

Cinnabar, you state that &quot;people have full control over the choices they make.&quot; This statement extended to its logical conclusion would state that therefore men have full control over their choice of whether or not to force a woman into unwanted sex (rape). I agree with that. Your arguments are very self-contradictory.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 9:40 p.m.

Cinnabar, Raping a woman because she's attractive is more like saying that because you own a Rolex, you deserve to be robbed. After all, if you didn't own a Rolex, you couldn't wear it anywhere.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 9:07 p.m.

ThaKillaBee i Never implyed anything you're twisting my words beyond belief. My point and only point is we have full control over the choices we make, but once that choice has been made we are not always in control of what happens next. Like wearing a Rolex out on a blind date, I have full control over that. Now if the woman sticks a gun in my face and demands the Rolex, my choices are over unless I'm willing to risk my life over said Rolex. See how life works ThaKillaBee? My choice put me at risk, had I thought about what could happens my choice to wear the Rolex would be different if I had used common sense. Cause and effect.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 8:29 p.m.

And the point I'm trying to relay is that a very, very small percentage of assaults are perpetrated just because a random guy got horny and grabbed a girl because she was wearing a mini-skirt. Even so, victims can be wearing any manner of clothing and still get assaulted. Your answer to that is essentially (I'm paraphrasing your original anaology) &quot;don't walk around late at night with a Rolex on.&quot; If Rolex is to mean... what? Skin? Private parts? That would mean you'd be implying that the women have the option of removing that before going out in public. &quot;They should know better than to walk around with those things.&quot; Your line of thought is exactly why marches like this are needed. It's not for the victims, it's for people like you.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 8:15 p.m.

ThaKillaBee and how is this walk going to prevent assaults that happen between people who &quot;know&quot; each other? I'm sure the attackers were told at some point in theirs lives it was wrong. I betting they were told repeatedly that sexual assault is wrong, yet they just dont care, thats the point I'm trying to relay. Make choices in your life that dont put you in danger, or at least reduces your danger. Cause you are also right, even some parents rape their children and theres no way a kid can know better, but we as adults are able to reduce the odds by the choices we make.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 7:52 p.m.

What cinnabar seems to be forgetting is that the major of assaults happen between people who &quot;know&quot; each other, or by members of the family, or worse. Not every assault is by a shadowy figure emerging from a dark alley, enticed only by a scantily clad passerby.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 7:50 p.m.

drut_ferguson That would depend on where I met her, if it were online and I didn't know her at all, yes I would feel pretty stupid. Also if I was trying to sell sun glasses on craigs list and a person answered my ad and asked to meet in a dark ally late at night and I was robbed, again I'd feel pretty stupid. But in both cases I would file a police report and pray they didnt use my name in the news story.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:57 p.m.

So, if you wore the hypothetical Rolex out on a date, and your date beat you up and took it, that would also be your fault in your mind?


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:18 p.m.

Oh. Because it sounded like you were blaming girls for getting raped.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:16 p.m.

Enzo my point is that we can make good or bad choices in life, but no matter what we have to live with those choices however they turn out.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 6:03 p.m.

I don't get it. So if you get robbed of your rolex it's not the criminal's fault? It's yours?


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 5:56 p.m.

Thankyou Ignatz, could you talk to my parents? They've been blaming me all my life for bad decisions.


Wed, Oct 12, 2011 : 5:53 p.m.

Of course there will be those who would blame you, but they'd be wrong.