The Pretenders frontwoman has been slammed by sexual violence charities for her remarks.
Singer Chrissie Hynde has been criticised after saying women who dress proactively were to blame if they were the victim of sexual assault. Speaking to The Sunday Times The Pretenders frontwoman also said she had been forced to perform sexual acts under the threat of violence when she was 21, but blamed herself because of the situation.
Chrissie Hynde has been criticised for her remarks about sexual assault.
Hynde told the newspaper that when she was 21 an Ohio motorcycle gang member promised to take her to a party but instead took her to an empty house, but added that she took “full responsibility” for what happened.
“Technically speaking, however you want to look at it, this was all my doing and I take full responsibility," Hynde said. "You can’t f*** about with people, especially people who wear ‘I Heart Rape’ and ‘On Your Knees’ badges ... those motorcycle gangs, that’s what they do.”
“You can’t paint yourself into a corner and then say whose brush is this? You have to take responsibility. I mean, I was naive. If you play with fire you get burnt. It’s not any secret, is it?” the 63 year old added. Hynde also said that women who wear ‘provocative’ clothing and walk around drunk were also to blame if they ended up being attacked.
“If I’m walking around in my underwear and I’m drunk? Who else’s fault can it be?” she said. “If I’m walking around and I’m very modestly dressed and I’m keeping to myself and someone attacks me, then I’d say that’s his fault. But if I’m being very lairy and putting it about and being provocative, then you are enticing someone who’s already unhinged – don’t do that.”
"Come on! That’s just common sense. You know, if you don’t want to entice a rapist, don’t wear high heels so you can’t run from him. If you’re wearing something that says ‘Come and f*** me’, you’d better be good on your feet ... I don’t think I’m saying anything controversial am I?” Hynde added.
Responding to the singer’s comments Lucy Hastings, the director of charity Victim Support said, “Victims of sexual violence should never feel or be made to feel that they were responsible for the appalling crime they suffered – regardless of circumstances or factors which may have made them particularly vulnerable.”
“They should not blame themselves or be blamed for failing to prevent an attack – often they will have been targeted by predatory offenders who are responsible for their actions. It is critical that nothing deters victims of sexual violence from coming forward to the police or to independent organisations so they can get the help and support they need,” Hastings added.