Blaming the Victim

Rehtaeh Parson was fifteen years old when she was raped. Four boys forced themselves upon her. They took pictures, and they gloated but even with all the evidence that they provided, no charges were pressed. Rehtaeh was traumatized, as anyone would be, but instead of receiving the support, justice and care that she deserved and needed, she was ostracized. Murmurs of “slut” and “whore” followed her in the hallways, while the boys slipped into anonymity. She was relentlessly and brutally blamed for her rape, and while our society blames the victim, we become less emotionally involved. We sweep rape under the rug, and we try not to see the raw wound it inflicts on our psyche. We blame the victims. We blame them for not fighting back hard enough; for not being stronger than the perpetrators, holding them down and stripping them naked. We teach our children “not to get raped” instead of “not to rape”. It breaks my heart that we’ve become so apathetic to such a loathsome crime, and that we let beautiful girls, with such wonderful potential, slips through the cracks of our flawed culture.



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