Alas ALAC! Leave Lisa alone

It took a while for me to work out what exactly it was that seemed ‘off’ with one of the Alcohol Advisory Council‘s (ALAC) recent shock tactic telly adverts from the It’s not the drinking, it’s how we’re drinking series.  

Every time I would catch the ad (where a woman -known as ‘Lisa’- gets drunk, dances embarassingly and is later abducted by a guy and – we are led to assume, raped by him), I would feel a combination of guilt for any previous drunken risks I have taken and repugnance for the distasteful last few seconds of the ad. 

It took a couple of full viewings to realise that the advert illicits feelings of guilt and discomfort for me, not because that is the advert’s intention – hoping that I will now address any binge drinking issues I may have, but instead because the ad implies that I (and Lisa) bear the responsibility of any sexual assault that may occur on my person, just because I was drunk. 

Well, that’s not right.  No matter how drunk I get or how badly I dance, I don’t deserve to be raped.  And nor does Lisa or, obviously, anyone.  Aloha, here’s some radical news for you ALAC; the rapist bears the responsibility.

If you agree, please click here to sign the petition.

There has been a lot of discussion around this in the Kiwi blogosphere, my fave post about it is here.  Some of the bloggers at The Hand Mirror have set up a petition requesting ALAC take the ad off the air.  You can read the letters sent to ALAC and ASA (Advertising Standards Authority), and view their weak, standardised template replies.  You can also join the Facebook group

I think the advert would make more sense if shown from the perspective of the guy who drinks too much to comprehend he is being told “no”.  Alcohol does change your cognitive abilities, binge drinking isn’t good for any of us, but being drunk and incapable of making good decisions does not mean an ‘asking for it’ scenario.   

I have sent an email to ALAC expressing my disgust and urge anyone who feels the same to add their name to the petition and email the link to the world.  Save Lisa!! Sure, hopefully she gains control of her alcohol intake, but still, she doesn’t deserve the blame for her own rape.


4 responses to “Alas ALAC! Leave Lisa alone

  1. i absolutely agree with this. when people get assaulted when intoxicated it is often reported with the implication that its somehow their fault.
    Well it isn’t. And it particularly isnt if the assault is sexual in nature. Take the ad off I say.

  2. Thanks for the support Shaun.

  3. lockedgroove

    i agree.
    the ad should be hung, drawn and quartered

  4. Hmm, I am torn… while I can see why people are upset by the ad, as it could have been handled a bit better, I also take a somewhat different view.

    Whether male or female, uncontrolled drinking can and will get you into situations that could have otherwise been avoided. Yes, no one should be raped and there is good no excuse a rapist can offer for such… but people who allow themselves to drink too much without worry or concern of the consequences are leaving themselves open to being screwed by others (in more way then one.

    I do not feel rape should be implied to be the victim’s fault, as it is not… at least not fully, but drinking too much will mess up one’s judgement and leave one vulnerable to harmful situation. This being from have ‘friends’ dropping you off far from home, unwanted tattoos, or in bed with a stranger (whether through rape or a drunken willingness).

    Because of the above consideration I am not sure if I should sign the petition.

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