I was going to write a nice funny blog about pedestrian/bicyclist etiquette in Rochester, but then I read this: MO girl raped, forced to apologise to her attacker, then raped again. Now you must suffer through yet another tirade. Hey, don’t you look at me like that! If you don’t want me to keep ranting, then tell people to stop doing stupid s***!
The gist of the story is this: this middle school girl was continually harassed by a fellow student. It escalated to the point where she was sexually assaulted. She did what everyone should do: went to the authorities, the school administrators. They didn’t believe her and interrogated her aggressively and without her mother’s knowledge, and she recanted her claim. She was then forced to hand an apology letter to the accused, and then she was expelled for the rest of the school year.
The following school year, this girl was harassed again by the same attacker. It escalated again, and she was raped behind the school library. This time, she was given a rape kit, and the attacker was taken into custody, and pled guilty to undisclosed charges.
End of story? NO! The girl and her mother are suing the school for their negligence in handling the whole situation. The school district’s response to the lawsuit:
The girl failed and neglected to use reasonable means to protect herself, the response says. Any damages the girl may have sustained, “were as a result of the negligence, carelessness, or conduct of third parties over whom the District Defendants had neither control nor the right to control.”
Translation: It’s the victim’s fault that she got raped twice.
My personal opinion: First: What. The. F***! As I am typing, I’m holding back a strong desire to take a plane to the Republic School District office and beat the f*** out of everyone responsible for this egregious negligence with a blackjack.
Second: After knowing more people than I should who have been sexually assaulted, I know that a victim’s story WILL change as she/he recalls it. I’m no psychiatrist, but I would assume this is because an assault like this is such a shock to the system that your brain probably shuts itself down partially so that you DON’T remember every gory detail. Even a person who may recall his/her regular day may neglect to state some detail of it.
Third: I have no solid numbers, but I can guarantee you that for every reported case of sexual assault in this country, there are probably 6 cases that are not reported, and s*** like this is why.
America, as progressive as we like to tout ourselves before “repressive” regimes, still crucifies its sexual crime victims. It seems that this happens more in the conservative states that claim to be fighting against Islam because it’s an “oppressive religion”. News flash: The way our society treats women is only a few levels higher than what they do yonder! If a woman is raped over there, she may be stoned for “bringing shame to her family”. Over here, her character is assassinated. People say she’s a slut, she led the man on, she might have deserved it. People scrutinise everything about her, from mannerisms to her choice of dress. How is this better? How is living through your honour being dragged through the mud after you were a victim of a horrific crime that was completely out of your control so much better than being killed? A girl’s life is ruined. Rape is worse than murder. At least with murder, you don’t have to relive the incident over and over. Your mind doesn’t repress the worst of it, only for it to come back like a flash bomb at the most inopportune time. This girl did everything she was supposed to do, and she was punished for it in the worse way. I’m so glad that she was brave enough to tell someone the second time it happened, but THERE SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN A SECOND TIME! The ONLY time people were punished regularly for rape in this country was post Civil War, when black men were regularly lynched for deflowering young southern belles, and even then, the rapes probably didn’t happen, and in some cases, the “belles” didn’t even exist!
It’s just as bad for male victims of sexual assault. On-record reports are few and far between, but it does happen, both to boys and men. The first thing that is stripped of them is their manhood. “You let somebody do that to you? You’re not a real man! You should have fought back!” Motherf***er, if the victim is a 50-lb boy and the attacker is a 175-lb man (or group of people), how the f*** is he going to fight that? In what bizarre world is that even possible?
I love my country, but I know not to be so arrogant as to say we’re any better than any other one. Until we are at a point where sexual assault is taken seriously, and victims are vindicated instead of vilified, we are a stone’s throw away from the stone throwers.
“Woman is the n***** of the world” –Yoko Ono (in voice)/John Lennon (in verse)