"The word ‘slut’ is not just degrading to women, but it is also used by society and the system to justify rape," said Bracha Barad, a deputy director of the Kulan organization which orchestrated the march and which promotes feminism in Israel.
Walking the streets with private areas partially, and in some cases fully, on display, the marchers sought to convey a message that no form of secxual harassment can be justified by revealing clothes worn by women.
The protesters also carried signs bearing the slogans such as, among other things: “No means no,” “I want to be free,” “Silence doesn’t mean consent,” and “Polite women don’t make history.”
The marchers also waved pictures of individuals whose names have become, over the years, closely associated with sexual assault such as renowned Israeli actor and director Moshe Ivgy, who was charged Thursday with several counts of indecent acts and sexual harassment against four women with whom he worked.
Pictures also appeared of Brigadier General Ofek Buchris, who was charged in 2016 with 17 counts of sexual misconduct, and former Israeli president Moshe Katsav, who was granted early release in 2016 while serving a prison term for rape.
“There is no connection whatsoever between sex and secxual violence and there is no connection between the victim's clothing or her sexual past and the attack she has undergone,” Bracha said.
“The law-enforcement authorities are quick to give a pass to rapists, but for the victims an impossible criminal bar is set by the establishment. Women are overwhelmingly abandoned by the establishment, and it starts in the police and continues up to the State Attorney’s office and the courts,” she complained, before saying that “we demand justice and radical and systematic change.”
The march began at 10am at Rabin Square, from where protesters made their way Habima Square and will conclude on Rothschild Boulevard.
The march is organized by the international SlutWalk movement, which was founded in Canada in response to a local policeman who said that women should dressing like “sluts” if they don’t want to be raped.