The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board recently released a new ad campaign, Control Tonight, that attempts to curb teen drinking. Their case? Don’t drink too much, or else you’ll get raped, but hey–that’s your fault, because we warned you!
One ad features a young girl’s legs, underwear around the ankles, as she lays on what appears to be a bathroom floor. The text reads, “She didn’t want to do it, but she couldn’t say no.”
The campaign even blames the victim’s friends–the Control Tonight website reads:
“Calling the shots starts with you. What if you didn’t watch out for your friends during a night of drinking?”
The campaign blatantly shifts the blame onto victims and friends, and away from the very person who deserves it: the rapist.
While the board may have had good intentions, these ads show that rape culture is alive and well in our society. Alcohol is definitely a huge factor when it comes to sexual assault, but in no circumstances is it ever the victim’s fault. Again we see our culture continuing to teach “Don’t get raped!” instead of “Don’t rape.” And instead of teaching people how to make sure they’re properly getting consent from someone they’re hooking up with, our society perpetuates a mindset that makes women feel guilty for a crime committed against them.
Call or email the PA Liquor Control Board and ask them to pull the campaign: 1-800-453-PLCB (1-800-453-7522), or email@example.com.