The fact that so many people are so terrified to talk about sexual assault is proof that it isn't talked about enough. The fact that I had to take a "sexual assault course" before I could transfer to a University is a problem. The fact that Hollywood is buzzing with so many sexual assault allegations that are spanning back 30 years is sickening. Why is this such an ordeal? Why don't people know sexual assault is bad, but if that dreaded thing happens they have somewhere they can go for help? Why is America at a place where we have to dance around issues like this and decent people have to suffer in silence?
The problem is mainstream media, which ironically will also be the solution. The media is such a bittersweet thing, it helps get the word out if someone is sexually assaulting people and hasn't been caught - but it also gives bad people ideas, motives, and publicity. Watching the news or a TV show can instantly influence a sexual assault, all because of how much attention it gives. Law and Order: SVU has what, 18 seasons under its belt? It didn't get this far because people hated it, and that is something that someone committing sexual assault will be looking for. However, the media can help catch an attacker and can aid in spreading awareness.
Another reason that it is such a problem is that there are too many variations and situations used for handling it, rather than uniformity. Kevin Spacey — yes, that guy from "House of Cards" — was fired from an upcoming movie and dropped from his multi-million dollar Netflix contract because he assaulted a minor in the past; yet we still have President Trump in office who has bragged about grabbing a woman inappropriately? I don't see the difference. No one should be held more accountable or to a higher standard when it comes to this.
Lastly, survivors are never respected in the ways they should be. Many people go into these situations with no one on their sides. More than half of the victims have no one that even believes them or takes them seriously. Lately, the issue of how powerful the attacker is has been the forefront. When are people going to be able to be heard without being doubted first?
America, we need to get it together. We need to show people that when they stand up for what is right they won't be punished. We need to let the media be a helpful thing instead of a toxic thing. We need to treat each case the same and hold people to the same standard: being a decent human, and we need to help the victims instead of patronizing them. Let's end this problem before it becomes too much larger.