“I’m Anna Akana and I’m here to help women everywhere not get raped! Because it’s totally our responsibility, right?”
In her her new video, the 25-year-old YouTube star sardonically sums up how problematic it is when people often tell women to not get raped instead of telling men not to rape. Akana lists some sarcastic, clever and outrageous suggestions for all genders on how not to get raped. (Warning: some of the suggestions get a bit violent.)
Here are a few highlights from Akana’s rape-avoidance guide:
1. Assimilate yourself into society as a dude.
2. Hire a bodyguard.
3. Buy a gun.
Easy, right? Wrong. Akana goes on to discuss why these tips -- that women are definitely told to use -- perpetuate victim-blaming. “[Women have] been conditioned our whole lives to not get raped," she says. "My dad put me in martial arts, my mom gives me knives and pepper spray. And despite the fact that I like that stuff, it’s mostly for anti-rape.”
Since the onus is on a woman to prevent rape, if a woman is actually sexually assaulted, people often start asking her what she was wearing or if she was drunk. This victims end up being blamed for "inviting" their own assaults.
Akana goes on to list the ridiculous amount of paraphernalia women are advised to get to ward off rapists, including weapons disguised as cute keychains, bedazzled pepper spray and even nail polish that can detect the date rape drug.
At the end of the video, Akana offers the best solution to preventing rape: “You know what would be better? If we just taught young boys that rape isn’t even an option."