This post is edited from a comment I left at Bayou Renaissance Man, h/t LabRat. He talks about what women can do to avoid rape. I've made comments of similar import to his in the wrong place and made a lot of people very hurt and angry.
Something I learned in doing so was the tremendous extent to which blame is commonly placed on the victim to avoid blaming the perp. People feel like the victim is only being blamed for being stupid, so it's not such a big deal. And then it's possible to escape fully dealing with the perp. Thing is, likely her parents know the perp's parents, or her friends know him; the people around her don't want to deal with the misery of actually calling the cops, giving them the story, the trial, asking people to be witnesses. People don't want to deal with it, and if they can wriggle out of it by focusing on her mistake rather than his evil, it's a huge relief. After all, all they have to accuse her of is a little imprudence. Doesn't seem that big a deal to them.
Remember, if you were advising the victim, that the offender here isn't the guy we're used to from self-defense discussion, a stranger with a rap sheet as long as your arm. This is your neighbor's teenager or a friend of all your friends. Yeah, maybe he seemed a little off, but you help her go forward with this and you're going to keep seeing his friends at class and parties, or his parents that you always asked to watch the house when you were on vacation.
And the people I was talking to, when I tried to make suggestions as to what could be done to prevent rape, had been through that experience as the victim. Where no one wants to hear it, they want to sweep it under the rug, they want to say that's just how the world is, she should have known. So the victims don't want to hear word one about what they should have done, and I see why. What Bayou Renaissance Man and I meant as a sensible warning in advance is commonly an excuse to worm out of dealing with the offender.
I personally do everything that I recommended that women do to avoid rape, despite being a damn unlikely victim. I'm not convinced we can NEVER talk about prudent behavior. But I think we better bring up its use as an excuse every damn time. Every victim has a whole circle of friends and family. A lot more of us are going face the temptation to sweep it under the rug than are going to face the crime itself. There's a lot more of us that need to recognize the warning signs of wriggling out of handling a rape than will need to recognize the warnings of impending rape. We ought to be considerably better at recognizing those than recognizing what the victim did wrong.