Our straight talking Lancashire lass takes a sideways look at the daily news.
Joanna Lumley lambasted for giving practical advice
Are women who go out wearing next to nothing, who get so drunk that they end up sitting on the pavement with their bare feet in the gutter, are these women ‘asking for trouble’?
According to actress Joanna Lumley, they are. And I agree. Of course they are!
During a recent interview with The Telegraph, the Ab Fab actress said that women should be more careful about how they conduct themselves when they go out, otherwise they could end up ‘being raped or robbed’. Predictably this has caused outrage, with blanket coverage of her ‘inappropriate’ comments on the Daily Mail homepage, and furious letters from women’s rights groups.
Personally, I don’t know what the fuss is about. Look at what Lumley actually says in her interview:
'Don’t look like trash, don’t get drunk, don’t be sick down your front, don’t break your heels and stagger about in the wrong clothes at midnight. This is bad. It’s not me being a snob about it. It's not me being an old woman talking to young women, its just standard practice for how our species should behave. Don’t behave badly.
'I promise you it is better to look after yourself properly, which means behave properly, be polite, be on time, dress properly – I don’t mean dully – but don’t be sick in the gutter at midnight in a silly dress with no money to get a taxi home, because somebody will take advantage of you, either they’ll rape you, or they’ll knock you on the head or they’ll rob you.'
Now, I’m not saying all women should walk around wearing polo necks and nuns' habits, but I can’t see why Lumley’s comments have caused such offence.
When I was a teenager going out, my dad would often frog-march me back up to my room and refuse to let me go out until I changed the mini-skirt/hotpant combo that I thought looked Oh-So-Cool (it really didn’t). I thought he was committing crimes against teenage fashion, but he was doing what any good, caring father should do and was keeping me safe. I will do exactly the same thing to my daughters, if I ever have any.
Wandering around with your boobs hanging out or your bum showing sends out very specific messages to guys, and that message is that you are On The Pull. Baboons do that type of thing in the jungle. It probably won’t result in rape – most sexual assaults happen behind closed doors rather than street attacks. But still, the signals are there, loud and clear – ‘I want sex!!!!!’.
Moreover, being hammered on a night out will leave you vulnerable to thieves. You could have your bag nicked, you could get mugged – in fact I’m willing to bet that being robbed is a more likely outcome to being raped.
All Lumey is saying is be careful! It’s common sense. She should be applauded, not criticised.