I feel like every time I turn around, there is at least one new story in the news of a woman going about her daily business and getting kidnapped, raped or murdered (or all three). I can tell you for a fact that this wasn't something that was happening nearly as much 50 years ago. Of course, maybe that's because women were expected to stay inside and take care of the house so maybe there wasn't the opportunity, to begin with. But what do I know? Anyway, we can see there's a definite problem here, but what is the solution? Well, I'm glad you asked.
I think the start comes from a simple place: changing the view of women from object to human being. Society has come pretty far, but we haven't come nearly far enough. So often women are still objectified and made to seem like a trophy to have. We need to start by teaching our children (men and women alike) that women are not objects and should not be treated as such. You like a girl and want to take her on a date? Fine, ask her in a polite and respectful way and if she says no, you accept that choice.
"Ah, but Abby, what about the women who don't dress and act like they want respect?"
Well, first of all, how a woman dresses is none of your business. Yeah maybe it's not the most weather appropriate, but you don't get to decide what another person's clothing choices mean. I would also like to add that doing the right thing does not start with someone else acting in a way that you deem right and basing your actions off of this. Being a respectful individual means just being a respectful individual no matter what circumstances you are put in. You are in charge of your actions and your actions only. Please act accordingly.
"Well, it's actually all of the immigrants and foreigners that are committing these crimes against women."
Okay, well let's just take a look at the incidences of sexual assault alone in the US:
- One in five women will be raped at some point in their lives
- In 8 out of 10 cases of rape, the victim knew the person that assaulted her
- Nearly 1 in 10 women have been raped by an intimate partner in some form
*Disclaimer—Sexual violence against men is also a problem that doesn't get a lot of light. I realize it is an issue, but for the sake of time, I'm not going to go into all of the details in this article.
If every 1 in 5 of our women is getting raped, it can't all be just the immigrants. As far as just regular crime goes, a study done by the Cato Institute using data from 2016 found that illegal immigrants are 47% less likely to be incarcerated than natives. Another study published in the journal "Criminology" stated that "Increased concentrations of undocumented immigrants are associated with statistically significant decreases in violent crime." So yeah, maybe illegal immigrants are committing a crime while they're here, but it seems that the more dangerous culprit are the individuals grown from our own soil.
I realize that this turned into a little bit of a rant, but I feel that recently the United States has wanted to place blame on everyone but ourselves. We find that there is a crime epidemic and we either want to brush it under the rug or say "if only we could build a wall to keep the bad guys out, then things would be okay." I think it's time for us to take responsibility for our own actions and stop letting our women be harmed. Violence against women is a huge problem right now and the general attitude of our country seems to be that we don't really care enough to do anything about it. Teach our children to respect each other. Let us change our thinking and the way that we act so that we can actually do something about the problem. Let the change start with us.