I normally keep my blog lighthearted but this is something I feel that I feel I need to voice my opinion about. The case of the girl who was raped in Steubenville is all over the headlines currently as two 16 year olds were found guilty and sentenced to at least one year in juvenile prison. What horrifies me is the backlash that this victim has received and also the fact that many mainstream news agencies are actually sympathizing with the convicted!
First Fox news named the victim which resulted in an onslaught of Tweets and Facebook posts including death threats aimed at the victim. Next, instead of focusing on how the victims life is ruined, CNN, Fox and others have decided to sympathize with the rapists: They were such gifted footballers! I read about this case a few months ago on Reddit- If it weren't for the group Anonymous leaking the information then there is a high chance that this whole incident could have been covered up.
Poppy Harlow in this video talking about watching the boys' "life fall apart".
Not one mention of the victim!
Trent May's apology (from 2.35) sounded like the most scripted and insincere apology ever. Note also how he apologizes for distributing the picture but not for raping. He also apologizes to his own family and community. At 3.08 Malik bursts into tears: Are we supposed to feel sorry for this guy? If you don't want to be labelled as a sex offender then you shouldn't rape anyone! His apology also seemed a bit skewed: "I never meant for any of this to happen"- What exactly is he referring to here. He never meant to get caught? Never meant to be trialed?
These boys made a very wrong decision which will affect them for the rest of their lives- All humans make these decisions though. They made a choice to rape, most men don't. That is the difference. I pity the fact that they probably weren't brought up with proper morals, I pity the fact that the football culture in America means that they got away with most of their misdemeanors up until this point making them think they were immune to the law. I pity the fact that modern day technology allowed for such easy sharing of the images of the victim. I do not, however, pity Ma'lik or Trent Mays.
Many people claim that the victim was dressed inappropriately or that she shouldn't have gotten so drunk, it's her own fault. Tell me this, if someone is shot do we make excuses saying they were asking for it? Is it their own fault? Why in rape cases do people think it's ok to blame the victim? What I have learned in the last few days really saddens me and it is that we live in a time where #RapeCulture is not only rampant but accepted. It's deplorable.
It's like The Onion is now real life...