Women shouldn't have to fear being assaulted or raped when walking home.
We shouldn't have to be on our guard at all times, ready to fight back against a shadowed enemy.
We shouldn't have to carry defensive items if we're running to the corner bodega late at night.
But we do.
And one young woman wants to change the culture producing this fear.
Taylor Yocom, 22, recently created a powerful photo series called "Guarded." It features black and white portraits of female students displaying their “safety” objects, including mace and rape whistles.
The objects, Yocom believes, represent a “larger reality of victim blaming.”
These loaded objects on key chains where trinkets should be really do portray how women are expected to always be on guard to protect themselves… when really the rapists should not be raping.
Some photos from her impactful project are below, and you can find more, along with more information, on her website.