Not that one needs reminding, but the Steubenville rape case has brought rape to the media feeding frenzy again. With that frenzy has come the usual twisted scenes of victim blaming, sympathizing with the rapist, and general acceptance of the practice of rape as some sort of right the aggressor holds over their victim.
I’m not about to beat an unconscious horse by talking about blaming the victim (though this remains prevalent irrespective of the clear logic against it). And I won’t talk about the creepy media sympathy for two “promising” “football stars.” Actually, scratch that, I will discuss it briefly.
All media outlets could say was that these athletes had their lives and their futures stolen from them as they were paraded in public as “alleged rapists” and how these “promising” “football stars” lost everything when the conviction fell on them. The only lesson that the media seemed to drum home to viewers was about the necessity to be careful what you do on Social Media sites. Essentially, they were saying, “If you don’t want to get caught raping someone, don’t record your crime and post it on your Facebook page.
Little was mentioned of the victim…who was raped…and presented to the world via the rapists’ Social Media pages. Granted, media are not allowed to give the name of underage rape victims (though this didn’t stop Fox News). But I’m assuming a story can come off a tad more compassionate for the victim without their name. Hell, I’m managing it just fine here.
Now, on to my original point, the bizarre culture of rape acceptance. For this, I turn to a “logical” argument posed elsewhere equating the Steubenville rape to a victim-less crime since the victim was neither harmed physically, nor impregnated, nor aware of her rape, and did not receive a sexually transmitted disease as a result of this rape.
This is equivalent to suggesting that, if you drove to a stoplight that had a redlight camera, nobody was around, and you ran the redlight, you’ve committed no crime since nobody was harmed by your action. Civilizations still require ethical and logical boundaries.
Rape is not nullified if the victim has amnesia, was unconscious, was drugged (most ruffied rape victims know nothing of the attack), was not impregnated. Rape still happened and is still illegal and immoral if someone rapes a mentally disabled person or a person in a coma. An act of defilement still occurred.
This sort of utilitarian argument for the victim-less rape is only one more nail in the coffin for degradation of women, and all sexual abuse victims, male and female.