If – like most people – you haven’t heard of the Steubenville Rape Crew, here’s quick recap. Keep in mind, no one has been convicted. So, take these details with a grain of “allegedly.”
Back in August of 2012 – in the football-centric town of Steubenville, OH – A 16 year-old girl was out with some friends to party. Early in the night she was drugged. She then taken to a party and raped – while unconscious – by at least four guys. Including two who instigated the attack and drove her around all night.
On the way to the next party, she was raped again. This was in the backseat of a car. Since this was 2012, that particular incident was videotaped.
At the next house, she was taken to the basement and gang raped. This lasted for several hours.
Once they were done with her unconscious body, they dumped her on someone’s lawn and at least of one of them pissed on her.
Now here’s what’s really messed up - as if this wasn’t twisted enough - the victim didn’t know she was raped. That was until the story came out on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. During the night while she was being repeatedly raped, there were people around her taking photos and video. But no one helped or even told her.
This is the sort of ridiculous, unnecessary assault that should never happen to anyone. But it did happen and will keep happening. Because, even though we claim to hate rape, our actions and reactions prove otherwise. Our actions give kids the message that this crap is A-OK.
Everyone knows what happens when someone is raped:
If the victim is a girl, we tell her she deserved it for being a slut.
If the victim is a guy, we tell him he deserved it for being weak.
If the victim is trans, we beat up the trans person for being gross and give the rapist an award.
In our culture, if you break gender norms you deserve to be raped. You deserved to be punished and it’s not enough to break people’s spirit with harsh words. Sometimes we have to break your body too.
This behavior is barbaric and simply unacceptable.
There is no excuse for rape. Any message other than that, poisons our society. It does nothing but give asshole rapists a rationale for their actions. In turn, it also prevents many rape survivors from getting treated with respect and decency. In my eyes, that sour of disrespect it worse that the actual assault.
Feel free to disagree, if that helps you sleep at night. But our alleged victim in Steubenville knows the reality. Many of the boys who raped her were football players for the local team. Because of that, even though her attack was one of the most brutal and demeaning we’ve ever seen, there’s still football fans telling her she’s a whore and a slut. Saying that she deserved to be punished. All to protect some kids who throw a ball decently.
Ask yourself this: If a woman deserves to be gang raped for simply trusting someone she shouldn’t have then what does that say about us? What kind of people would let that happen in their society?
That’s the question I always ask and I’m still waiting for an answer.