Today, on April 26, many countries of the world commemorate the ”Denim day”. On this day people are encouraged to wear jeans as a visible form of support to the victims of rape and as a manifest against the stereotypes that promote the culture of rape.
The story of ”Denim day” started in Rome, where in 1992 a driving instructor aged 45 was accused of sexual abuse against a student aged 18, who got into his car for the first practice class. The girl told her parents and they supported her decision to file a complaint at the police.
Although the accused was convicted in the first level court, later, in 1998, the Supreme Court of Justice repealed the conviction, based on the fact that the victim was wearing skinny jeans, and the attacker couldn’t have undressed her without her help. In the acquittal of the rapist, the judges mentioned that if the student took off her jeans by herself, the deed cannot be treated as a sexual intercourse against her will.
The next day, the women from the Italian Parliament came to the plenary session dressed in jeans, as a sign of protest against the decision of the Supreme Court of Justice. In 2017, ”Denim day” will be celebrated worldwide for the 18th year consecutively. Thus, wearing jeans the last Wednesday of April became a symbol of protest against stereotyped and superficial attitude towards sexual aggression and rape.
In 2017, the organizers of the ”Denim day” from the USA called all the persons who wanted to join the campaign by wearing jeans for one day, to fill in a form on the web page of the event. By now, more than ten million people responded to the call.
In the context of the ”Denim day” the second edition of ”MENxx: The culture of rape” will be held in Chisinau. During the event, the speakers will discuss about the perpetuation of the rape culture from different perspectives. According to the representatives of the International Center ”La Strada”, who are the organizers of the event, this action aims at preventing sexual crimes by means of education and public awareness.