Why Couldn't You Just Keep Your Knees Together?
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Politics and Activism

Why Couldn't You Just Keep Your Knees Together?

The reality of rape culture

Why Couldn't You Just Keep Your Knees Together?

When I was younger, the term "rape" was defined by a criminal, a dark alley and a young girl I assume had been kidnapped. It seemed so unreal. It was such a distant concept to me. In todays society, rape is no stranger anymore. It has plagued college campuses and courtrooms across the nation. Rape cases have become all too familiar. So familiar, that alleged victims seem to be poked and prodded with the same, nonsense questions. These questions include, but are not limited to: "What were you wearing?" "How much have you had to drink?" "Had you been flirting with him?" "Did you know him?" And my personal favorite, "Why couldn't you just keep your knees together?"

"Why couldn't you just keep your knees together?"

That question was asked and just like that, rape culture has solved itself and girls across the nation are safe. I mean, if the unconscious victim being penetrated behind a dumpster could have just kept her knees together while she lay there, stripped of her dignity, being violated and oh, I don't know, unconscious, then maybe Brock Turner could eat his favorite rib-eye steak in peace.

Thank you, Robin Camp, for your brilliant question. I can slightly appreciate your ignorance in understanding that the knees are the savior for rape victims since they bear the brunt of your body weight, but they are just not that strong. The problem is not the womans ability to keep her knees together, it is the rapists ability to keep his pants zipped. The problem is that instead of finding justice for the victim, we are justifying the rapists actions.

The problem is that we are describing the rapists as "star athletes" instead of rapists. They should be stripped of the title "star athlete" the second they strip and violate another human being, at least in the court room and on news screens. Yet, the only facts we seem to dwell on in these cases are the extra curricular activities of the rapists, not including the one where they commit rape crimes. The problem is sugar coating the rapists actions and demonizing the victims. We don't address the victim as someones daughter, best friend or class mate. Instead, we slut shame her for her apparel and her drink choice.

The problem is that we are teaching women to be afraid of the world. We are teaching women to hide on the weekends, to cover up, to only drink water and to carry mace everywhere they go. Yet, what are we teaching men? Aside from if you want to rape someone, go ahead and do it because the unjust system will probably treat you well and let you walk a free man, or at worst, three months on good behavior.

The problem is that we are stressing the importance of women to come forward about rape and we are laughing in their face, asking them, "Why couldn't you just keep your knees together?" The five minute skits college campuses show at orientation explaining consensual sex refutes itself when rapists don't get prosecuted for their actions and colleges don't acknowledge it as rape. Offering counseling to a rape victim can only help so much when there are no repercussions for their perpetuators actions. There is only so much one can make peace out of in a sitauation where they're scared for life and their rapist is a free man.

The problem is that one in five women are raped. The problem is that most women know their rapists and face them on campus every day. The problem is that we blame alcohol for why women get raped. They go to a party and they get raped and it's their fault. We don't blame cars for car accidents. We don't blame guns for shootings. But when it comes to rape? Oh, that's alcohol's fault.

The problem is that we don't dress these problems. We make a big deal out of it on social media and then it disappears. When will we stop blaming the victim of rapists actions? When will we stop teaching victims to not get raped and start teaching rapists to not rape? When will we stop asking questions that don't apply to the situation? Questions like: "Why couldn't you just keep your knees together?"

"Why couldn't you just keep your knees together?"

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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