How The Outrage Over Brock Turner Can Help Rape Victims

How The Outrage Over Brock Turner Can Help Rape Victims

It's not your fault.

Early last week, the country got a wake-up call when we saw the injustice of rapist Brock Turner's sentence. After raping an unconscious woman behind a dumpster in January 2015, Turner was sentenced to just six months in county jail. People are outraged because of the injustice seen in the courtroom, but also because of how the media first handled the news.

One of the biggest issues surrounding the media is that people seem to be focusing on the fact that Turner is a swimmer. Many headlines say that Turner is a swimmer, rather than a rapist. Here's an example. And another. And in the letter from his victim, she explains how she first found out what actually happened -- how was she found, who raped her and what he said -- in a news article she found while browsing her phone. Below the article, his best swimming times were listed.

Not only did some media outlets react poorly to the news, but how other people reacted was poor. Normally, if a person is found guilty to three felony counts due to rape, such as Turner, they will earn him/herself 14 years of state prison. Yet, Turner earned six months? Part of this is because of Turner's father read to the court. His father wrote the letter, focusing on how Turner's life will be forever altered because of anxiety and depression, and how "20 minutes of action is a steep price to pay for 20 plus years of his life" Alexandra Ozeri tweeted a revised version of the original letter and wrote, "This isn't like the three-second rule for food, rape still counts no matter how many seconds it lasts. This is rape."

One of Brock Turner's childhood friends, Leslie Rasmussen, also wrote a letter to the judge. One of the issues that she mentions that it is okay because they were drunk. Turner blames it on the college's "party culture." So, if I was drunk and someone stole my wallet, it makes it okay, right? No. We can't blame the alcohol, we can only blame the rapist.

This, and six other myths that Rasmussen makes are pointed and debunked by Bustle.

We can see the reaction that people and media show is that how people did not treat the rape correctly. Most of the country is outraged by it and are voicing their opinions on why it's wrong.

I want to make it clear that rape is rape, it doesn't matter if you're drunk or not. It doesn't matter if it lasted seconds or half an hour. It doesn't matter if they are your spouse or a stranger. It doesn't matter if they are well liked or popular. It doesn't matter if they bought you a car and you think you 'owe' it to them. It doesn't matter how you're dressed. It doesn't matter where you are. It doesn't matter what gender the attacker is. It doesn't matter what gender you are.

The only person at fault here is the rapist.

No one else.

Cover Image Credit: Mercury News

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To The Friends I Won't Talk To After High School

I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.


So, for the last four years I’ve seen you almost everyday. I’ve learned about your annoying little brother, your dogs and your crazy weekend stories. I’ve seen you rock the awful freshman year fashion, date, attend homecoming, study for AP tests, and get accepted into college.

Thank you for asking me about my day, filling me in on your boy drama and giving me the World History homework. Thank you for complimenting my outfits, laughing at me presenting in class and listening to me complain about my parents. Thank you for sending me your Quizlets and being excited for my accomplishments- every single one of them. I appreciate it all because I know that soon I won’t really see you again. And that makes me sad. I’ll no longer see your face every Monday morning, wave hello to you in the hallways or eat lunch with you ever again. We won't live in the same city and sooner or later you might even forget my name.

We didn’t hang out after school but none the less you impacted me in a huge way. You supported my passions, stood up for me and made me laugh. You gave me advice on life the way you saw it and you didn’t have to but you did. I think maybe in just the smallest way, you influenced me. You made me believe that there’s lots of good people in this world that are nice just because they can be. You were real with me and that's all I can really ask for. We were never in the same friend group or got together on the weekends but you were still a good friend to me. You saw me grow up before your eyes and watched me walk into class late with Starbucks every day. I think people like you don’t get enough credit because I might not talk to you after high school but you are still so important to me. So thanks.

With that said, I truly hope that our paths cross one day in the future. You can tell me about how your brothers doing or how you regret the college you picked. Or maybe one day I’ll see you in the grocery store with a ring on your finger and I’ll be so happy you finally got what you deserved so many guys ago.

And if we ever do cross paths, I sincerely hope you became everything you wanted to be. I hope you traveled to Italy, got your dream job and found the love of your life. I hope you have beautiful children and a fluffy dog named Charlie. I hope you found success in love before wealth and I hope you depended on yourself for happiness before anything else. I hope you visited your mom in college and I hope you hugged your little sister every chance you got. She’s in high school now and you always tell her how that was the time of your life. I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.

And hey, maybe I’ll see you at the reunion and maybe just maybe you’ll remember my face. If so, I’d like to catch up, coffee?



Cover Image Credit: High school Musical

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A Little Skepticism Goes A Long Way

Be informed citizens and verify what you see and hear.


These days more than ever before we are being bombarded constantly by a lot of news and information, a considerable amount of which is inaccurate. Sometimes there's an agenda behind it to mislead people and other times its just rumors or distortion of the facts. So, how do you sift through all this and get accurate information? How can you avoid being misled or brainwashed?

This is an important topic because the decisions each of us make can affect others. And if you are a responsible citizen your decisions can affect large numbers of people, hopefully positively, but negatively as well.

It's been said that common sense is not something that can be taught, but I am going to disagree. I think with the right training, teaching the fundamentals behind common sense can get people to have a better sense of what it is and start practicing it. All you will need is to improve your general knowledge and gain some experience, college is a good place for that, then add a little skepticism and you are on your way to start making sensible decisions.

One of the fundamental things to remember is not to believe a statement at face value, you must first verify. Even if you believe it's from a trusted source, they may have gotten their info from a questionable one. There's a saying that journalists like to use: "if your mother said, 'I love you' you should verify it.'" While this is taking it a bit too far, you get the idea.

If you feel that something is not adding up, or doesn't make sense then you are probably right. This is all the more reason to check something out further. In the past, if someone showed a picture or video of something that was sufficient proof. But nowadays with so many videos and picture editing software, it would have to go through more verification to prove its authenticity. That's not the case with everything but that's something that often needs to be done.

One way of checking if something sounds fishy is to look at all the parties involved and what do they have to gain and lose. This sometimes is easier to use when you're dealing with a politics-related issue, but it can work for other things where more than one person/group is involved. For example, most people and countries as well will not do something that is self-destructive, so if one party is accusing the other of doing something self-destructive or disadvantageous then it's likely that there is something inaccurate about the account. Perhaps the accusing party is setting the other one up or trying to gain some praise they don't deserve.

A lot of times all it takes is a little skepticism and some digging to get to the truth. So please don't be that one which retweets rumors or helps spread misinformation. Verify before you report it.


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