A hoax or a genuinely wicked plan? Either way, even the suggestion of this vile day during which rape is supposedly legal (which it isn’t, ever) is symbolic of how much further we still have to go in terms of feminism.

Starting with a TikTok which spiralled into a trending topic, hundreds of thousands spoke out about the day. Thankfully, very few of the videos I saw personally were actually in support of the idea. However, I am aware that thousands of people still saw them, not just triggering survivors but actually convincing some people to take part.

Was the 97% not enough for them?

I know many may say it is just a stupid, hateful joke in retaliation to recent coverage on women’s safety; but where is the joke? How is mocking women’s lack of safety funny? How is inspiring so much hatred and aggression and encouraging trauma funny?

And why is your masculinity so fragile that you think women simply wanting to feel and be safe is too much to ask? Why does that make you feel so insecure that you feel the need to terrify us into silence once again?

Even just the circulation of the date was triggering for survivors, so much so that not only them but other women refused to leave their homes during that frightening Saturday. There were even reports of an 11-year-old who felt so unsafe that day that she brought knives to her school. An eleven-year-old.

This is yet another demonstration of the sad reality that girls are still told to shield themselves before boys are told to change their abhorrent attitudes and behaviour towards women.

I asked some students about their opinion as to why feminism is all the same so vital today in regard to sexual assault.

Miss Cheal states that the ideas that lead to sexual assault are rooted from a young age; children are taught traditional gender characteristics, in which “boys are rewarded for being dominant and assertive and ‘having balls’, whilst women are awarded for their communication.” She continues, “from the age of 5, girls are told if a boy is rude or violent towards you it’s because he liked you, thus teaching girls that violence equals love.”

If we teach children early on that this idea of masculinity is toxic – teaching boys they can’t empathise and girls that “violence equals love” – and breakdown gender stereotypes, assault and domestic abuse will drop and equality may finally be in sight.

To all the men reading this: you do not own our bodies or our minds. We are people. Please give us the respect each and every one of us deserves.

And please educate yourselves on how to help us. Because admittedly, due to the structuring of our patriarchal, misogynistic society, we need male allies to get through this. We need you.