You should read Melissa’s response, because it’s good and I haven’t got the strength today. I will say three (relatively) quick things.
Firstly, I’m really sick of this idea that one can put “there’s no excuse for rape” in front of any statement, and that will magically make it non-victim-blaming. I commented about this on this thread. It’s as though people think that simple phrase, or alternately “of course a woman is never to blame,” means that anything following those words is somehow not misogynistic and entirely socially acceptable. I called it the cousin of the “I’m not racist/homophobic/sexist, but . . .” comments. People think that if you say “I’m not racist” first, it’s totally okay to say something racist. It’s the theory that Hitchens is using in this hateful piece of garbage. And it needs to stop.
Secondly, when Hitchens attempts to prove that he’s not really a victim-blamer, I think this sentence — in the middle of an article about rape — gives us all the information we need about his motives for this entire article: “If women want to dress provocatively, then they should be free to do so, and I say thanks a lot to those who do.” I don’t even feel the need to elaborate — you’re smart people, I’m sure you can figure it out.
Lastly, in the same way that anti-choicers who rail about how feminists have abortions for fun irrationally and momentarily make me want to get pregnant and have an abortion just to spite them, Peter Hitchens’ crap about how women shouldn’t be allowed to drink without being raped and deserve less sympathy when they are (think he’d have this same point of view if he, a man, were that victim?) makes me irrationally and momentarily want to develop a drinking problem just because it’s my goddamn right.
It also momentarily makes me feel like stabbing. It’s lucky that I’m not a violent person — and that Hitchens will most likely never cross my path while he’s drunk, because apparently in that case such undoubtedly wrong actions would be completely excusable.