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Hynde feels like lynch mob victim

Pretenders' Chrissie discusses backlash to her comments about sexual assault

Chrissie Hynde says the backlash from her sexual assault comments is like being the victim of a lynch mob.

The Pretenders frontwoman encountered controversy in August when she discussed her opinions on the subject, after writing about her own experience of being attacked by a biker gang when she was 21. 

Referring to the passage in her autobiography Reckless, Hynde said she took responsibility for the incident, adding: “If I’m walking around in my underwear and I’m drunk, who else’s fault can it be?”

That led to a flood of negative comments, including rape victim Jackie Fox, formerly of the Runaways, who said: “This is just telling people who’ve gone through this experience, ‘You’re right, it is your fault.’”

Now Hynde tells NPR: “I’m not going to describe it because I’ve written about it in the book. But what I can say is, I never said I was raped. I’ve never used the word and it’s not in the book.”

She adds: “I’m just telling my story. You know, it’s almost like a lynch mob. I’d rather say, ‘Just don’t buy the fucking book, if I’ve offended someone. Don’t listen to my records.’

“I’m not here trying to advise anyone or tell anyone what to do, or tell anyone what to think, and I’m not here as a spokesman for anyone.”

She says of her past experience: “I was having fun because I was so stoned. I didn’t even care. That’s what I was talking about – the drugs more than anything, and how fucked up we were. And how it impaired our judgement to the point where it had gotten off the scale.

“No one dragged me into the park in the middle of the night with a gun at my head and forced me to do anything. I went off with these guys of my own volition – and I shouldn't have. I was stupid to do that, but I did it.”

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