Chrissie Hynde, the icon of female rockers everywhere, is seriously bumming us out this morning. In the her new memoir, Reckless: My Life as a Pretender, the singer tells the story of a time she was sexually assaulted in her 20s — and then goes on to blame herself for it. In an interview with the U.K.'s Sunday Times, she upholds that conviction.
When she was 21, she says in the book, she was with a member of a motorcycle gang in her native Ohio. Hynde thought he was going to take her to a party, but instead, he took her to an abandoned house and assaulted her. "Technically speaking, however you want to look at it, this was all my doing and I take full responsibility. You can’t f--- about with people, especially people who wear ‘I Heart Rape’ and ‘On Your Knees’ badges," she says in the book. She went even further into this victim-blaming philosophy in an interview with the Times: "You can’t paint yourself into a corner and then say, 'Whose brush is this?' You have to take responsibility. I mean, I was naive. If you play with fire, you get burnt. It’s not any secret, is it? "If I'm walking around and I'm very modestly dressed and I'm keeping to myself and someone attacks me, then I'd say that's his fault. But if I'm being very lairy and putting it about and being provocative, then you are enticing someone who's already unhinged — don't do that. Come on! That's just common sense." She then asked her interviewer, "I don't think I am saying anything controversial, am I?" We're wondering if she's really that naive, as she seems to be embracing the same philosophy about rape and sexual assault that the most oppressive regimes in the world do. Nothing controversial about that in the least.