Antiquarian Anabaptist

Apologetics from an Anabaptist perspective

How can a woman be safe?

A few days ago, the police in Toronto issued a warning to the public about a series of sex assaults that have occurred in the downtown area.  In response, Krista Ford, 21 years old, posted the following note on her Twitter account: “Stay alert, walk tall, carry mace, take self-defence classes & don’t dress like a whore.”

Ordinarily such a comment would have been read by a few friends and nothing more would have come of it.  But Krista Ford is the niece of Rob Ford, the mayor of Toronto, whom the “progressive” media are intent on destroying.  The hounds were loosed and such a hue and cry was raised that two days later Krista Ford deleted the offending comment from her Twitter account and posted this apology: “I didn’t mean to cause such an alarm and I apologize if I did. I just want women to be safe.”

Columnist Barbara Kay, writing in the National Post, seems to have a realistic grasp of what this is all about:  “Dressing like a slut – and nobody has to define it; we know it when we see it – may have started as an ironic fashion trend, the same as ripped jeans, but it has now become an activist costume, and strutting one’s sexual charms in a mimicry of prostitutes’ behaviour an act of political theatre.”

The only reason that I am commenting on this news is that it reminded me of a remark I heard many years ago.  Brenda Day had gone through the mill herself in her younger years, but she had survived, become a Christian and married a kind and supportive husband.  When we knew her twenty years ago, she was director of a street mission in downtown London, Ontario.  Through her work there, she and her husband had taken into their home a teenage girl who wanted to make a clean break from her former life and become a Christian.

One day this young lady complained to Brenda that she didn’t like it that young men of a certain type were paying so much attention to her.  Brenda told her, “The clothes you wear are advertising to those young men that you would welcome their attention.  If you don’t want attention from that kind of men, you need to change the way you advertise yourself.”

I guess it’s not socially acceptable to be that blunt today.  But why not?  This is not a question of blaming the victim.  It is simply a question of not playing with fire.

Early Christianity had a powerful attraction for women in the Greek and Roman world.  For the first time, they heard that they were persons of equal value to men in the sight of God.  Christianity lifted women out of the brutal oppression and degradation that they had lived in up to that time.  It seems that the efforts of those who want to “liberate” women today are having the perverse effect of returning women to that former degraded state.  Jesus Christ is still the only answer.

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