Jess Commons | Deputy Editor | Thursday, 7 January 2016

Here\\\\\\\'s The Important Reason Why This Woman Live-Blogged The Aftermath Of Her Rape

Here's The Important Reason Why This Woman Live-Blogged The Aftermath Of Her Rape

The Debrief: When anti-rape activist Amber Amour was raped at a hostel she was staying in, she posted to social media just two minutes after

When anti-rape activist Amber Amour was raped at the end of last year in Cape Town, South Africa, she was in the middle of her Stop Rape Educate world tour. The horrific irony doesn’t even begin to bear thinking about.

Amber was first sexually assaulted when she was 12. Then again when she was 24, by her roommate in her native New York. A policeman said to her, ‘Maybe he thought you meant yes’. And so her campaign Stop Rape Educate was born to ‘end sexual violence against women, men, and children by educating the public on rape culture, consent, and healthy boundaries.’

As part of her campaign, Amber, now 27, embarked on a world tour, using her method of chalk art to spread awareness and help educate. However, when she reached Cape Town, she was raped in the hostel she was staying in.

But, rather than give up and go home, Amber chose to do something very different. ‘I immediately knew that I couldn’t keep what had happened a secret,’ she told Marie Claire. ‘Here I was, telling survivors every single day that they should speak up... I knew I had to practise what I preached. So the first thing I did was take a picture and write a post, describing what had happened.’

 

It was only a few minutes ago but sometimes these things happen so fast it's hard to remember all the details.... I've been sick for the past 2 days and today was my first day out. I went back to my old hostel to leave a note for a friend, Nick. There was another guy there, Shakir, who was desperately trying to get with me. I kissed him once but he seemed drunk so I told him it was bad timing, I had already met someone. Before heading out, I went upstairs to say hi to one more friend, Clyde from the states. Shakir followed me upstairs and said he was going to take a shower. He invited me to join. I said yes because the water at my current hostel is pretty cold and after 2 days of being sick, I just really wanted a hot shower. As soon as I got in the bathroom, he forced me to my knees. I said "stop!" but he just got more violent. He lifted me up and put his penis in my vagina. I asked him to stop, again, as I began to cry. When he shoved it in my ass, that's when I passed out. I woke up a few minutes later and saw him trying to creep out the door. When he saw that I was awake, he came back to finish me off in the shower. I have all those fucked up feelings that we get after rape...shame, disgust, suffering. I'm here, alone, and any DNA has been wiped away in the shower. The South African police will just roll their eyes when I walk in. Feeling sicker than ever now. Needless today, I'm going to disappear for a bit. Just need to enjoy the freaking sun and call my friends and family in the states. Love you guys. Thank you for always being there for me. All the more reason to continue @stoprapeeducate but not today. Today, I need rest. #StopRapeEducate

A photo posted by Amber Amour (@ambertheactivist) on Nov 21, 2015 at 9:34am PST

Following the support Amber received on social media, she decided to take her case to the police. She later posted an image of the rape kit being used on her in the hospital and another long missive speaking out against the shame rape survivors often feel.

Since then, Amber’s had a struggle to get justice. She posted on Facebook that, after being in South Africa for a month, the police still hadn’t interrogated the man who raped her. ‘They have his number, they know where to find him, but they keep coming to me to get *MY* story correct. Excuse me South African police, am I the victim or accused? Because I can’t help but feel that I’m being treated like a criminal as the man who raped me roams freely...’

Finally, on January 2, he was arrested and has now been released on bail for the princely sum of $75. Amber says she’s going to continue the case, but has unfortunately had to cancel subsequent stops on the Stop Rape Educate tour.

About a week after the rape, Amber posted a series of screenshots on Instagram of trolls who chose to blame her for the attack. They make for a shocking read and only serve as evidence as to why Amber’s campaign is needed.

Here’s hoping Amber’s case is able to reducate some of these people.

You might also be interested in:

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What Do The James Deen Rape Allegations Mean For The Porn Industry?

Follow Jess on Twitter @Jess_Commons

 

Tags: Rape