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Blaming victims of rape only worsens the harm done

Rape is a terrible enough crime, the brutal and vicious violation of a human being, debasing her, using her body as nothing more than a receptacle, leaving her traumatized for perhaps the rest of her life. Making things still worse is the practice of actually blaming the victim. Or rationalizing the seriousness of the crime away. For instance, I came across at SocialistWorker.org, a commentary by contributor Jen Roesch on what happened to a teenager in Steubenville, Ohio. In January, a 12-minute video went out over the Internet of young men joking about her being raped last August, along with Twitter and Facebook posts. It included photos of her unconscious, too inebriated to resist, being dragged about by the wrists and ankles from location to location to be repeatedly assaulted at several parties, for hours, while others watched. Incredibly enough, there were remarks on social media blaming the girl for putting the football team (Trent Mays and Ma’lik Richmond, star athletes — no surprise, there — are scheduled to go on trial March 13) in a bad light. For putting herself in a position to have this happen to her. Continue Reading →

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