2018-04-26 / Letters

Letter writer once attacked, like one in four women

To the editor:

One in four women, one in ten men are sexually assaulted in their lifetimes whether in the military, in college, in Hollywood, in Washington, or here in Northern Michigan. Overwhelmingly, the great majority go unreported. I was attacked at age 5 by the janitor.

Rape and assault are violent crimes. There are varying degrees of harassment: violent, scary, and always intimidating. It’s all about control. Why has this ugliness been normalized in our society? We have all heard the phrases “Boys will be boys”, “Locker room talk”, “bragging rights”. Victims lives are ruined. What about an unwanted pregnancy? As long as rapes continue, there will be abortions and suicides. Legal or not.

Why don’t victims speak up?

 Fear of retaliation—physical violence against the victim or family members — 85 percent of attackers are known by the victim.

 Victim is blamed. Her word against his. If a rape kit is turned in, it may take months to be processed. Courts can tear the victim to shreds while the attacker gets a warning.

 Media bullying, emotional agony, ruined reputation, loss of work or job opportunities.

We must speak out against sexual misconduct. Teach and demand respect from children and adults. Enough is enough!

Beverly BJ Christensen
S. Cedar Rd.
Cedar

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