In current discussions regarding sexual assault, the focus seems to be on the surety of the woman’s victimhood as well as the man’s criminal act. If anything, a certain Rolling Stone apology from last December should cause us to pause and never assume the truth in any situation, especially one so life-changing as rape. The act of rape is a most personal, vicious crime, and my heart goes out to those who have experienced it. Being accused of rape is life-altering as well. Even if the allegations are dropped, the stigma of “predator” continues long into the future.
Rape culture exists, but not in the cozy confines of the U.S.A., although the feminist elite would have you think that. American females are quite comfortable to venture out individually and go about business as usual. If an every-man-is-a-potential-rapist society existed here, us women would never leave our homes. By using the label of “rape culture“, this gives power to the idea of a societal undercurrent in which all women are treated as objects by all men who escape any responsibility whatsoever. This is simply not the case.
Along with branding all of American society as a “rape culture”, a huge focus is the world of the college campus. University students do a lot of dumb things, and yes, sexual assault occurs on campuses around the nation. But it is not the epidemic that the Left would like for you to believe. As Heather Mac Donald explained in her National Review piece (after UVA student Hannah Graham was abducted and before the eruption of the “Jackie” scandal):
Many feminists claim that 20 to 25 percent of female undergraduates will be sexually assaulted during college. If that statistic were correct, you wouldn’t see the heightened security measures that UVA has instituted, because there would be no females left on campuses to protect. A 20 to 25 percent rape rate would have emptied the colleges years ago. Instead, every year applications from females snowball. So far, campus administrators have played along with the campus-rape-epidemic claim, confident in the belief that most people don’t really believe it. They get to appease the feminists on and off campus without endangering their application rate. Harvard recently created a new centralized office of trained sexual-assault investigators, after president Drew Gilpin Faust announced that the school “must do better” on sexual assault. If the public were ever to buy the conflation of the alleged 20 to 25 percent campus rape epidemic with what happened to Graham, however, Harvard and every other college would turn on a dime and start asserting that they are among the safest and most crime-free environments in America — which is true.
The extremely safe nature of the American college campus is quite evident. Women flock to universities. This would not be the case if the threat, as reported by the Left, was considered accurate even for a moment. It would be exceedingly foolish to place oneself in such an environment. Despite all this being obvious, new sexual consent policies are all the rage. The idea of “yes means yes” is not the problem. Of course common sense consent should be encouraged, but that is not the issue. The real issue is the reverse sexism that emanates from this declaration, and the increase in freewheeling accusations that have undoubtedly been brought on.
For instance, this anti-rape poster recently posted on Reddit:
“Jake was drunk. Josie was drunk. Jake and Josie hooked up. Josie could not consent. The next day Jake was charged with rape. A woman who is intoxicated cannot give her legal consent for sex, so proceeding under these circumstances is a crime. It only takes a single day to ruin your life. Think about it. Be responsible.”
Predator? Jake. Prey? Josie. Why? Male v. female. That’s why. And the “Be responsible” message seems aimed at Jake more than anything. The reality that is completely avoided by this poster is that neither man nor woman, when sufficiently intoxicated, has or exercises self-restraint. That is just the truth of that type of situation. But although this is the case, Jake was the sole perpetrator, and Josie would never be considered an accomplice. With advertisements such as this, the Left is saying that women need to be protected. They are admitting that women need help over men. And here I thought women in 2015 America were strong creatures who kick down the patriarchy with every independent thought of theirs? Oh, how I was wrong. We’re helpless creatures, right? Well, apparently only in situations where accusation of assault might come up. Only then are we allowed to pearl-clutch in the corner, albeit briefly.
As Ashe Schow of the Washington Examiner wrote last week:
The truth must matter above all else, not what category someone belongs in — and due process is that tool by which we figure out whom to believe. If an accuser is a victim, she (or he) deserves all the support in the world. If the accused is innocent, he deserves support. That’s not even getting into situations where the evidence is unclear one way or the other.
It shouldn’t be up to Republicans to stand up for due process or up to Democrats to stand up for victims. Both sides should be working toward the truth in each case.
Our focus should be on truth, regardless of gender politics and furthering of any type of narrative. We shouldn’t make assumptions of guilt or innocence before we look at the facts. We shouldn’t keep from discussing the aspects of responsibility which play a part in all of these situations.