Ashley Love is a wildly talented Salt Lake City based tattoo artist who specializes in traditional style tattooing with a focus on feminist undertones. She also recently held her second annual Still Not Asking For It event this past Sunday, October 23rd. A benefit for the Joyful Heart Foundation, Still Not Asking For It is a flash event and fundraiser to raise awareness and visibility for sexual abuse and assault victims. In the past two years alone, Still Not Asking For It has raised close to $30,000 to aid survivors in their recovery process. It’s a wonderful event that has helped countless survivors cope with their realities, but until now Love has never publicly disclosed why this particular subject is so near and dear to her heart.
The other night after the event in NYC I was actually talking to Andy Perez about this. He said to me, "One of the big goals of this event is to keep the conversation going, right? So why aren't you talking about it?" We have had this conversation before and I didn't really have an answer. I could say I didn't know where to say it or I'm not good with words — but those are excuses and beside the point. The real reason is that it's hard to talk about. So I'm happy you've asked. Here we go...
Tattoo artist and organizer of Still Not Asking For It, Ashley Love, tattoos an eager customer. (Photo by Katie Vidan) #StillNotAskingForIt #AlliedTattoo #AshleyLove #JoyfulHeartFoundation #rapeculture #endrapeculture
According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, "one in 5 women and one in 16 men are sexually assaulted while in college. Rape is the most under-reported crime; 63% of sexual assaults are not reported to police. Only 12% of child sexual abuse is reported to the authorities." The more we as a community continue the ongoing discussion of sexual violence and bring it out of the shadows, the less there will be a need for events like Still Not Asking For It. It’s a slow burn that will undoubtedly take some time, but together we can eradicate sexual violence in our lifetime.