Anna Sheffer
February 01, 2018 1:57 pm

Since the #MeToo movement gained steam in October, more women have been coming forward with allegations of sexual harassment and assault. And while #MeToo is making a difference in helping women find acceptance and recognition of their pain, an offensive church sign posted in Indiana demonstrates that victim-blaming is still a problem.

The sign was posted outside of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Jeffersonville, Indiana. “STOP SEXUAL HARASSMENT. WEAR CLOTHES,” it read. Several local citizens expressed outrage at the sign’s message, saying that it blamed women for any sexual abuse they experience.

A man describing himself as a “trustee” of the church spoke to Louisville, Kentucky news channel WLKY to claim responsibility for the sign. The man reportedly said he felt that women wearing “inappropriate” clothing are essentially sexually harassing men and, in effect, cause some men to sexually harass women.

Pastor Sidney Fulton removed the sign on the night of January 28th and issued a statement apologizing for the message. He said the church sign did not express his views and that he would ensure sexist messaging like this never happens again.

Regardless of who was responsible, the message on this church sign is reprehensible and belongs nowhere near a church. Sexual harassment victims are never asking for it, no matter what they wear. The sexist attitudes that suggest women are responsible for their own harassment need to end once and for all.

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