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4-min read

#ThisIsNotConsent: Women Are Tweeting Pictures of their Underwear, and you Should Pay Attention

Clothes do not define consent - say it over and over until you start believing it. And trust us, it's time.

Raka Mukherjee | News18.com@RakaMukherjeee

Updated:November 15, 2018, 12:49 PM IST
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#ThisIsNotConsent: Women Are Tweeting Pictures of their Underwear, and you Should Pay Attention
Clothes do not define consent - say it over and over until you start believing it. And trust us, it's time.
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Clothes do not define consent. (Now repeat)

In all kinds of logic failure, recently, a pair of underwear a teenager was wearing was cited as evidence in the trial of a man who was accused of raping her. The lawyer for defence, Elizabeth O’Connell, held the pair up in court and said, “You have to look at the way she was dressed. She was wearing a thong with a lace front.”

The 27-year-old man who was accused of raping the 17-year-old was found not guilty of the crime earlier this month in Ireland.

Even though the judgment of the trial was not questioned, there were calls for legal reforms in how rape trials regularly hear details of what the alleged victim was wearing.

To this, thousands of women across the world agreed. How does it matter? How does it matter whether it was a lacy thong or a granny-panties? Clothes do not define consent. And as a form of protest to this notion and example, women started tweeting pictures of their underwear with the hashtag #ThisIsNotConsent. There were protests in Cork, Ireland where panties were strewn on the steps to further emphasize this fact.

People have also ridiculed the idea that clothes could mean consent, not just in this particular case, but in general, always. Why does it take so long to be heard?

Because it's not about consent. It's about rape culture.  It has got nothing to do with at where she was, with whom she was, how much she had to drink, what she was wearing-- and that includes what she was wearing beneath her clothes.

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