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Female Advocate Amber Rose Making a Difference with Her “Slut Walk” Festival

by Sydney Pigott

Model, actress, talk show host, entrepreneur, and female advocate Amber Rose is trying to make a difference in girls lives with her new “Slut walk” festival.

Amber Rose is well-known for her appearance in the Kanye West music video “What Them Girls Like.” From there, her career took off. She married Wiz Khalifa, and had a kid named Sebastian. She appeared as a contestant on the hit television series Dancing With The Stars.

Later she came out as a host of her talk show The Amber Rose Show. Rose hinted at her secret project for a while on her show, and decided to reveal her “Slut Walk” on September 26, 2016 on her 9th episode of The Amber Rose Show.

On the “Slutwalk” website it states “Just to be clear, Amber Rose did not start the SlutWalk, nor did she coin the phrase; however, she is bringing more awareness to this matter by educating the public.” [1]

“It all began back in 2011 in Toronto, when a police officer told a crowd of college women that if they wanted to avoid sexual assault, they should not dress like sluts. Crazy, right? This sparked a worldwide campaign that outraged men and women across the country. [1]

“Slutwalk has now become a global movement with grassroots success in over 200 countries in taking a stand against sexual injustice, victim blaming, and derogatory labeling.” [1]

Amber Rose was inspired to start getting the SlutWalk noticed because of her personal experience. “Unfortunately, I was extremely slut-shamed,” she said during an emotional speech at the event. “I was called ‘nothing but a stripper’. [Kanye asked] why would he ever be interested in me, I’m just a bald-head stripper from Philly. I was a gold digger; apparently he had to take 30 showers after being with me. That’s what he said.” [2]

A video shot by a person attending the SlutWalk went viral. As well as referencing the Kanye incident, she detailed a lifetime of slut-shaming that millions of women can relate to. Describing a high school incident where she was slut-shamed, despite being a virgin, Wiz Khalifa’s lyrics about her, where he “Fell in love with a stripper, and fell out of love quicker,” and describing the endless name-calling and labels that she and all other women face for being successful females. [2]

Julie Angelo a sophomore, said she was slut shamed and felt “upset and angry” when it happened to her friend. Junior Jameah Elliot added “I used to get bullied for being gay; at first I was discouraged but after awhile you start to get numb [to it].”

Suddenly, there is a very visible, human face behind the phenomenon of slut-shaming, opening up about how it actually feels to be on the receiving end of this kind of constant, low-level abuse for years on end. For many men and women, it was extremely refreshing and a depressingly familiar story.

 

Amber Rose is biracial, and her SlutWalk had a different dynamic to others. It centered on the experiences of black women and other women of color in a way that other SlutWalks had failed to before.

Most women know what it feels like to be bullied about their sexuality, too. Women will be called sluts, thots, and hoes for behavior that does not raise an eyebrow when men perform that exact same behavior.

These are old, long-established double standards, and most of us are familiar with them, but it does not mean they should be allowed to go on forever. They are causing real harm to real women, and “it still hurts,” as Amber Rose puts it. That’s why she marches, and why thousands of women march right beside her.

 

Sources:

[1] http://amberroseslutwalk.com/our-story/

[2] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3xhED-DLSco