What truly is three months? Well, it's a really short amount of time. I've been thinking about three months a lot lately, considering that it was deemed an acceptable punishment for the Stanford rapist--- I mean swimmer. Every headline I read harps on his swimming career, which is over. Putting aside that I am livid that someone found guilty of sexual assault would get three months, and what this says about the value of women's safety, the respect this society has for their bodies, the desire to grant them justice and the seriousness with which we handle rape and sexual assault, I wanted to compile a list of just a few items that last longer than three months. For the sake of comparison.
1. One academic semester
2. The typical lifespan of a butterfly
3. A seasonal drink at Starbucks
The PSL will be around longer than he was around actual consequences for his actions. Then again, most don't even see a bit of consequence.
4. The average time it takes to unpack once moving house
Especially if you procrastinate. But don't worry, while you're busy unpacking your sh*t, he's boxing his up tight and pointing fingers at everything, and everyone, else for his crime.
5. The social anticipation for Christmas
You'll just be singing "Baby, It's Cold Outside." He'll actually be creepily trying to coerce a girl into staying. Coercing is evidently his favorite pastime.
6. A Trump presidency
Granted, he might take only slightly longer to get himself impeached, but the legal process alone would account for the Stanford rapist's sentence and more.
7. A calendar year
One of six he might have gotten to make it the bare minimum for his offense.
8. A typical meme
9. The average crush
Those little flings of romantic attraction outlast this sentence at four months. So your high school obsession with Brad Linebacker took up more time. Make sure your four months is spent on someone who respects you, though!
10. Getting a GED
For some, with the classes and tests, and occasionally the need to try again, it can take four months or more. Make sure to get other education besides math, science and writing. Like, for example, consent.
11. The average time it takes ice cream to get freezer burn
Not that it usually lasts that long in the freezer. Still longer than Stanford's favorite swimmer lasted in jail.
Untested they sit. Not used in court to rule on cases. At least progress has been made on that, but it's not as if a guilty verdict holds too much more weight when you're rich and white. Victims are not given justice in many cases, not just this one. This needs to change.
If you or a loved one have been a victim of rape and sexual assault, please utilize these resources to assist in your healing process:
National Sexual Assault Hotline, 24 hours: 1-800-656-4673
www.rainn.org (particularly "Get Involved")
Your campus Title IX Coordinator and www.titleix.info
You are valued and you are not alone.