“I raced with my friends. We all ran well. I set a goal for myself and exceeded it.”
Then Laura got tagged in a photo of her running the race.
Interested to see how the event had been captured, she took a look – and then noticed the comments which accompanied the photo of her.
A man Laurah did not know at all had seen fit to comment on her photo – and Laura was stunned by what he had said.
“No wonder joggers get raped. That’s because she doesn’t have any damn clothes on and she’s running for her life…”
Laurah was horrified, and her immediate instinct was telling her to respond.
“Instantly, my brain started rationalising and justifying my race outfit,” she wrote on her blog .
“It was a race! They are competition briefs! They make me cool and faster! My legs move more freely! They’re funny!”
“Then I paused,” Laurah continued. “I was immediately disappointed that my gut reaction to this man’s horrific comments was to defend my wardrobe choice.
“After all, there were photos from the race of shirtless men, men in short shorts, men in tight shorts; yet he did not feel motivated to comment on their potential for inviting sexual assault.”
Laurah did not merely want to report the comments (although she did).
She wanted to make a point that what the man said was not only victim-blaming, and encouraged others to take a similar stance.
“His words not only propagated the idea that it is a womans responsibility to avoid sexual predation, they excused it. They normalised it,” Laura wrote in a piece for Runner’s World about the comments.