On my way down to SlutWalk at Hong Lim Park yesterday, I wondered whether what I was hearing out in cyberspace about boneheads allegedly planning to coming down to "gawk" at us was true. I found this rather amusing and wondered what on earth they thought they were going to be gawking at? Me in my bra and knickers perhaps? Do I look like I'm standing around offering up my body to you here?
here, people would be less hung up on whether people were going to come dressed as "sluts" and more concerned about the root issue here - that there is no excuse for victim blaming where sexual assault is concerned and that is something that should be universally supported.
Your first cause-related event is always the hardest, which is why it was great news for SlutWalk Singapore that they had a turn out of 650 supporters - and a very diverse crowd at that - for their first outing, despite the usual afternoon rain that made an appearance later on in the day.
SlutWalk faced up to their critics and sceptics, and triumphed. Those who did not think sexual violence was an issue in Singapore and that SlutWalk Singapore was purely jumping on the bandwagon. Those are the usual people who do not seem to recognise or want to recognise problems in their own back yard. But even if this was not an issue in Singapore, since when should we stop empathizing with serious issues happening in the rest of the world, just because we perceive it to be not happening on our doorstep?
Those who thought it was a protest, or a demonstration, you can take it from the horses mouth (in that case the horse is me) that SlutWalk Singapore was neither. It was a gathering to show solidarity to those who have been subject to victim blaming under the notion that people are sexually assaulted or abused because they have dressed like "sluts". And to denounce that notion and empower people to be free to express themselves in how they chose to dress without such an archaic judgement being passed on them.
Like minded people and causes came together, connected, supported, exchanged ideas, enjoyed performances...
I really can't wait to be part of next year's SlutWalk. From small seeds big things grow and I look forward to helping to educate and open up the minds of those who are blinded to the issue at hand.
All pictures credited to Irene Ma. For more photography please do also check out this great post on publichouse.sg on The Faces of SlutWalk 2011.