“You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we are here today.”
– A rape victim to her abuser
Being drunk or walking alone is not asking to get raped. Being adorable or sweet is not an invitation for violation! NO MEANS NO! No response ALSO MEANS NO! There is no non-consensual sex, there is consensual sex and then there is rape. All parties involved must be in willing agreement and capable of making decisions.
As a woman I have been told never to walk by myself. I have been warned that if my clothes were too revealing I might “attract the wrong attention.” I have attracted the wrong attention without even batting an eyelash. I have heard horror stories of women being thrown down in alleys and beaten to within an inch of life, having their dignity and sometimes their lives taken by predators.
Its a scary world, for everyone. I even know a man who was victim of a brutal rape, he woke up half naked in an ally in the middle of the day, drugged and taken advantage of.
Movies and the internet do not help rape culture. I often recall being deeply disturbed by the rape scene in A Clockwork Orange, and know that there is even more brutal scenes out there now and a whole genre of rape porn.
But still, it’s deeper than that. At the end of the day its a human being making the decision to be evil and heartless, to take something that is not being offered. The next scene of the woman in a shower, never being able to wash away the dirt she feels inside.
In January of 2015 two Swedish Stanford students were biking across campus and discovered a rape happening. They chased down the assailant and he was arrested. 20 year old Brock Turner was found guilty on three counts of sexual assault.
He was found behind a dumpster thrusting himself on top of and violating a half nude woman who was passed out. He could have faced up to 14 years in prison. He was only sentenced to six months in county jail and probation.
The judge feared that a more severe punishment would have too severe of an impact on the young man. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! SEVERE IMPACT? ON HIM!? WTF! HE IS A RAPIST!
A rapist who happened to also be a champion swimmer, all American white bread Olympic bound perfection. It was more important that this perfect boy who just made one little itty bitty rapey mistakey would be ok in the end.
Did the judge even consider the women he raped? The woman who he put his rotten fingers inside and forced himself upon? The woman who will never feel truly clean.
The victim spoke out with a poignant statement to Buzzfeed. She explains the course of her day, remembering going to a party with her younger sister, and then waking up covered in blood in a hospital with no panties on and pine needles in her hair. She then continued to describe the invasive aftermath of photos and tests, nurses measuring abrasions, and questioning.
She was black out drunk and raped, because she remembered nothing he got to make all of the rules. HE got to fill in the blanks. The man who raped an innocent woman will of course say she wanted it, she ASKED for it even. A made up night of dancing and kissing. She was drunk and he took advantage of her weakness.
Her life was halted, not knowing how to talk to even her family or boyfriend about that night. She became isolated and stopped sleeping.
While at work one day she came across an article about her attack. She learned for the first time (like the rest of the internet) that she was found butt naked from the waist down with a strange man on top of her. One of her saviors was crying when describing the scene. The gory details were on the internet before the victim was even informed!
WHAT? She was studied and prodded then sent out into the world with no therapy, then the investigation happened and she wasn’t told, it happened to her and she had to find out at work. As if she was invisible, she didn’t matter. In the article the rapist claimed that SHE LIKED IT!
After reading the entire article about the gory details of her assault, the article listed his swimming times. His swimming times were more relevant than her goddamn life. She couldn’t digest the information and passed out when trying to tell her family what happened.
She realized that if it hadn’t happened to her he would have raped some other girl instead. Thank god he was caught, he will pay for this, she thought.
Money and privilege win out, surprise. The over priced lawyers turned her into a demon and glorified Brocky-poo. He was drunk too, but not “black out.” Yea she liked it, she danced with me, she rubbed my back.
Bullshit. No woman wants to be face down covered in pine needles behind a dumpster. No good human has sex with someone who is unconscious and flees from the scene when confronted.
He knew damn well he was wrong and still didn’t have to pay for it because he is white, rich, and a star athlete. The rules are different.
The helplessness she felt was even more traumatic than the deed itself. In the end she says that she suffered for every girl out there who is going through the same thing, there are so many more, so many who have never spoken out. Invisible victims of society, taught that it was their fault.
Things need to change! Victims of sexual abuse have no voice, the consequences of such evil deeds need to be more severe, it is a travesty.
It is also about class and race. If a poor black man was convicted of a similar crime against a white woman he would be hung, nobody would care, there would be no surprising headline. Everything must be equal. No matter your race or class you must be punished for your wrong doings equally.
It is not fair that we do not feel safe, I am often asked if the streets around where I work are safe to walk at night, I want to say Yes, but really think No, there are no safe places for women. No matter where we are there is a chance for horrific things to happen to us, day or night.
Nothing we wear or don’t wear, nothing we say or do can save us. UNLESS we stand together and take back the night, we stand with our sisters would have been abused and make sure it never happens again. We fight to make sure rapists get what they deserve and let it be known that women are strong, especially together.
Do not be silenced, do not stand for this.