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College Sexual Assault And A White House Response

A White House call to action on sexual assault on college campuses. We’ll get the whole story.

 

in this photo taken Monday March 12, 2012, students walk across the Dartmouth College campus green in Hanover, N.H. The college has been a leader in changing sexual assault reporting processes for its student population (AP)

in this photo taken Monday March 12, 2012, students walk across the Dartmouth College campus green in Hanover, N.H. The college has been a leader in changing sexual assault reporting processes for its student population (AP)

You’re going to be hearing a lot more about sexual assault on college campuses.  Not that it’s new.  The number out there for a couple of years now has been “one-in-five” women sexually assaulted sometime during college.  But focus on the problem has grown and grown.  So has outrage.  Now the White House is weighing in with an action plan for colleges to expose and combat sexual assault.  They’ve got movie stars and big athletes speaking out against it.  They’ve got step-by-step recommendations for colleges to tackle it.  Will it work?  This hour On Point:  the new drive against college sexual assault.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Katie J.M. Baker, higher education reporter for BuzzFeed. (@katiejmbaker)

Annie E. Clark, co-founder of End Rape on Campus. (@aelizabethclark)

Catherine Lhamon, assistant secretary for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education. Member of the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault. (@EDcivilrights)

Inge-Lise Ameer, senior associate dean of Dartmouth College for student academic support services and campus life.

Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO), senior U.S. Senator from Missouri. (@clairecmc)

From Tom’s Reading List

Washington Post: White House issues report on steps to prevent sexual assault at college campuses — “The task force, led by Biden and the White House Council on Women and Girls, canvassed assault survivors, college administrators and others for ideas on how to respond to a phenomenon researchers have found: that one in five women is sexually assaulted in college.”

BuzzFeed: Rape Victims Don’t Trust The Fixers Colleges Hire To Help Them — “But while college presidents love Smith and Gomez, many of the women who forced their universities to hire consultants in the first place loathe them. Complainants across the country told BuzzFeed that they believed their institutions were paying Smith and Gomez to clean up messes by paying lip service to federal compliance.”

New York Times: A Star Player Accused, and a Flawed Rape Investigation — “The case has unfolded as colleges and universities across the country are facing rising criticism over how they deal with sexual assault, as well as questions about whether athletes sometimes receive preferential treatment. The Times’s examination — based on police and university records, as well as interviews with people close to the case, including lawyers and sexual assault experts — found that, in the Winston case, Florida State did little to determine what had happened.”

Read “Not Alone,” the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault’s Report

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
  • Fiscally_Responsible

    Good thing that Clinton isn’t still in the White House or this whole campaign would be a big farce!

    • northeaster17

      Why?

      • Fiscally_Responsible

        Surely you remember all of the affairs and cheating that Clinton engaged in as governor and then as president. It would be similar to having Al Gore preach to us about reducing our carbon footprint while he is stepping off of his chartered jet into a stretch limo for a ride back to one of his palatial energy gorging mansions.

        • John Cedar

          Kathleen Willey and Juanita Broaddrick are two that accused Bill Clinton of raping them. They are probably part of the 30%++ of accusers who lie and make false accusations. Paula Jones is the woman who accused Clinton of exposing himself to her. Which is not sexual assault and is only sexual misconduct. she is probably a liar too. The blue dress girl was a liar too, until we found out she kept the dress.

          • Ray in VT

            Care to provide some research for your 30+% number?

            When did Kathleen Willey allege that the President raped her, and what credence do you give to people who have made false statements to law enforcement or whose sworn statements directly contradict each other. It is hard to build a solid case upon such ground.

          • John Cedar

            Thank yo for pointing out my error. It was only Broaddrick who accused Clinton of rape.. Willy only accused him of sexual assault.
            What credence do I give to…? Clinton, who lied multiple times?

            While you seem reasonably competent in processing Boolean logic you seem to have some sort of learning disability when it comes to possibility logic. So to sum it up for you, there is an astronomically low chance that Clinton is not a sexual assault criminal. All reasonable odds makers would bet that he is a sex offender.

          • Ray in VT

            Considering the totally bogus nonsense that you will often promote, I think that I will just go ahead and disregard the opinion of one who promotes ridiculous conspiracy theories as regards my ability to process logic. I merely pointed out your factual errors and the legal problems with building a case with some of the people whom you mentioned. I made no statements regarding former President Clinton, as I believe that the most actionable claims have already been addressed in court.

          • John Cedar

            I did not realize you were speaking from a prosecutors standpoint and asking my opinion as if I was a prosecutor.

            I was just pointing out to Fiscally Irresponsible that he was on to something big when he brought up Clinton but then dropped the ball big time.

          • Ray in VT

            If one is going to flat out state that someone has committed a serious crime, such as rape, then one ought to produce some solid evidence. The court of public opinion needs not that, which is why it is good that that is not where people are legally tried.

          • John Cedar

            I doubt Clinton is a rapist in the court of public opinion. I agree with you that accusations of rape should have solid evidence to back them up. In the case of Clinton, the evidence is the same as in most rape cases…the victim’s testimony. But then a pattern of multiple accusers of other sexual misconduct compounds things. Civil court allows for such considerations.

          • TFRX

            Your conflating consensual sex with (wild hare) rape accusations is funny.

    • Ray in VT

      Of course, because if Clinton was President then he’d probably just give them all a behind closed doors slap on the back. An atta boy if you will perhaps.

  • http://flustercucked.blogspot.com/ Frank TheUnderemployedProfessi

    Colleges and Universities should have little to no involvement in adjudicating accusations of sexual assault because they are not law enforcement agencies nor judiciary.

    Our society already has a proper forum for adjudicating these issues–the criminal justice system where the accused are afforded Due Process of Law. Allegations of sexual assault are very serious and should never be dealt with by university kangaroo courts.

    Most of the voices calling upon universities and colleges to “do something” are trying to circumvent due process of law. Victims of sexual assault should contact the Police and District Attorney, not the Dean.

    But…but…the accused might get acquitted if there is a criminal prosecution! That’s right–the accused get acquitted when there isn’t any evidence of a crime or when the evidence suggests innocence. The system is supposed to work that way so that a mere accusation is not the equivalent of a guilty verdict.

    Does anyone remember the Duke LaCrosse Rape Hoax? There’s a reason why we need Due Process of Law.

    • Charles

      Sad thing about Duke Lacrosse is that WAS due process of law.
      We got to see exactly how inept Durham PD and the DA were (DA lost his job over it).
      The University moved hastily, in retrospect, but they were only taking their lead from the due process of law.

  • skelly74

    Move over law enforcement and college and universities, the Fed government is now here to advise.

    How do you regulate young adults with horrible judgment and extremely insufficient life skills, who are living unsupervised by their parents for the first time, with access to drugs and alcohol, and raging sexually charged hormones? Is this too extreme and uncompassionate?

    The problem sounds similar to the military sexual assault problem for the same reasons (see above).

    If you take away drugs and alcohol and coed housing, what is left? Sexually charged young adults with poor judgment, insufficient life skills, who are living unsupervised by their parents for the first time.

    Maybe the government will solve this issue. I hope they finally come up with some concrete solutions. Obviously crime and punishment has not worked.

    • skelly74

      Maybe the best and brightest youngling’s amongst us should be required to work a year before college providing assistance to the down trodden and criminal insane, victims of abuse and assault, etc.

      Before leaving mom and dad’s swaddling, and jumping into the land of liberal arts, these future leaders should walk among the characters they will read about and see, smell, and feel their suffering. Then leave the swaddling life they had and go on to adulthood with a tad of perspective.

      Or not.

    • JS

      Part of the problem is that there isn’t always ‘crime and punishment’ where college assaults are concerned.

      • skelly74

        If there is a crime. Is having sex while drunk a crime? Being sexually assaulted and having a regretful sexual encounter are not the same, but may carry the same emotional scars.

        Avoiding a rape is questionable because of the intent of the assailant. Avoiding regretful sexual encounters rely more on awareness, life experience, and maturity.

        • JS

          Sex while drunk isn’t a crime, and I agree with your points.

          My point was that many colleges have a reason to underreport, and discourage from reporting, assaults cases. Similar to other institutions, such as the RC Church.

  • Shag_Wevera

    A hopelessly difficult and complicated problem. I agree that colleges and their pseudo police should probably not handle these situations.

    • Coastghost

      Frankly, I’d abolish all post-secondary remedial programs before I’d abolish the first university or college police department.

      • JS

        I think he was talking about not letting university police handle rape cases, not getting rid of whole departments. But you knew that didn’t you, but couldn’t resist being off-topic to promote your agenda.

        • Coastghost

          Et tu, Brute?

  • John Cedar

    We can expect an endless stream of lead stories from the MSN about racism and rape until the elections are over. We can expect not to hear about the Benghazi smoking gun emails or if we do, the content will not be front and center.

    • Ray in VT

      Yes. The MSM is working hard to keep TOP conspiracy fantasies out of the news by reporting on things that matter and have a factual basis.

    • nj_v2

      Hey, you forgot to mention the IRS scandal!

  • Coastghost

    By the way: what statistical data are available for the rates of false accusations of sexual assault? (We observe that “sexual assault” for the purposes of this discussion has not been explicitly defined: we assume it includes rape, but if the rubric includes “unwanted touching”, the rubric seems appreciably vague.)

    • John Cedar

      You have touched the third rail. Expect to get crucified.
      I heard Doctor Laura quote a very high statistic above 30% before. I believe it is accurate because I have known a number of people who were accused that I don’t believe were guilty.

      • JS

        So, you know 3 people who were falsely accused for every 7 you know who were assaulted?

      • TFRX

        Anecdata much?

    • Ray in VT

      A number of studies put the number at somewhere between 2-11%.

      • Coastghost

        Frankly, I’m amazed that social science statisticians can arrive at an unambiguous figure of 20% incidence of campus sexual assault and yet can arrive at no closer a figure for false sexual assault accusations than one ranging from 2% to 11%. (Correct my math if need be, but if 10% of all allegations of campus sexual assault are false, then the rate of incidence of campus sexual assault falls instantly from 20% to 18%.)
        I wonder what really accounts for this wild disparity in reportage of dependable statistical data.

        • Ray in VT

          Probably some anti-man conspiracy.

          • Coastghost

            No, just typical dotty feminism.

          • Ray in VT

            Sure. That must be it.

          • Coastghost

            I mean, apart from rank dishonesty and outright lying, additional to the exaggeration and hyperbole already constituent to this discussion.

          • Ray in VT

            Of course. It’s all being totally overblown by those ladies out there looking to take men down a notch.

          • Coastghost

            Or: it’s being overblown by women being hoisted by their own petards, insofar as they’re content to rely on unreliable statistics, hyperbolic arguments, and native feminist hysteria.

          • Ray in VT

            Obviously it’s just a bunch of emotional ladies getting their undies all in a bunch.

  • Charles

    It’s fine that the President wants to draw attention to this issue…unfortunately the White House is powerless to improve it.

    Young kids are going to have sex.
    That’s about all we need to know here.
    The problem starts well before college. If men aren’t brought into a society that values and respects women, campus assaults are what you’re going to get.

    We need to take a look at ourselves as parents, neighbors, and mentors and not expect the universities (and heaven forbid politicians) to make our young men into good people.

    • JS

      Rape is not sex,
      So young kids having sex has little to do with it.

      • Charles

        I agree, but I expect the line is pretty blurry in a lot of these cases.
        My point was that college kids are going to be sexually active whether we approve or not, and we ought to try to change the culture.

        • John Cedar

          Tape is having sex with someone who does not consent to the sex or is not capable of consenting. Where do these faculty lounge sociologists come up with this stuff? And why do you so eagerly agree with the absurdities?

          • Charles

            I don’t know what half of that is supposed to mean. I’m telling you, as someone who’s actually been to college in the last 3 years, that the culture is such that rape is ill-defined. Maybe if we actually educated kids about REAL sexual issues instead of doling out abstinence education and reproachful lectures kids would understand what they are facing on campuses today.

          • JS

            Sorry if i misunderstand you comment, but are you saying that “(R)ape is having sex with someone who does not consent to the sex or is not capable of consenting.” is an absurdity?

          • John Cedar

            No, I’m saying it is absurd to say rape is not sex. While there are some other motivation factors for rape, the dominate drive by the rapist is for sexual satisfaction.

  • Ed75

    Young people are as smart as we were. But they are told by our culture: sex is recreational, in fact a human need without which one can’t live fully. Sex of any kind. Experiment, realize oneself. And so use contraception, and if there is an unplanned pregnancy, there is abortion. How can one expect that the seamier and uglier sides of this advice will not surface, not to mention the now 27 or so venereal diseases.
    But many young people sense that this whole view of sexuality is very wrong and they are adopting the Catholic view of sexuality, groups are reading St. John Paul’s Theology of the Body, and joining abstinence groups and attending lectures. It’s a breath of fresh air. Saving themselves from all these disasters.

    • Ray in VT

      I’m sure that such problems don’t occur within the Church or with true believers.

    • JS

      Two points:
      1. Hasn’t rape been going on for years? At least today we discuss it, usually don’t blame the woman, and punish the men, even husbands and priests.

      2. How does abstinence protect against rape?

    • TFRX

      So, the young people who “sense” things and go all Catholic are the ones who are as “smart as we were”?

      Yahoo.

      Oh wait: Another yahoo for abst-only, the program that works perfectly up until the moment it fails completely.

    • J__o__h__n

      Recreational sex isn’t rape. This is the same kind of foolishness that Rick santorum used to blame the victims of the priest rapists by blaming it on a less restrictive society.

  • Markus6

    I’d like to know more about what the problem is. 1 in 5 is a very high number for sexual assaults. I hope the experts will tease out that number. Who collected the data and who paid for it? How did they collect it and define sexual assault? Could they break it down to different profiles for perpetrators or survivors.

    As I approach middle age, I get more suspicious of advocates who perform or refer to studies. Maybe I’m overly suspicious but this could be like the stat of children who get abducted. I don’t remember though I think it was over 50K per year reported maybe 15 years ago. This resulted in parents going nutty in terms of watching their kids, not letting them out to play, not letting them walk to school, etc. As it turned out, the number was completely bogus. However, it like the myth of infant vaccinations, had far reaching results.

    So, before we pull another nutty, let’s find out if these experts really know their stuff or are hyping this to sell a book, get funding or just stir things up to get their 15 minutes of fame.

  • OnPointComments

    Consider this statistic from the above referenced report titled Not Alone: “One in five women is sexually assaulted in college.” 20%. Would any responsible parents send their daughters into an environment where sexual assault occurs at a 20% rate? No, and in my opinion, thinking parents intuitively know that the statistic cannot be correct. As the following article states, the sexual assault statistic used by the administration is exaggerated.

    TWISTING SEXUAL-ASSAULT STATISTICS
    President Obama’s numbers are hyperbolic.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/article/369422/twisting-sexual-assault-statistics-katherine-connell

    Excerpt:

    …if it [the 20% statistic] were true it would mean that women at American colleges experience a “rate of sexual assault astronomically higher than anything seen in America’s most violent cities…

    …many of the women classified by researchers as having experienced rape or sexual assault do not consider this to have been their experience. The NIJ study [National Institute of Justice study from 2007] found that more than 60 percent of women who were victims of incapacitated rape did not think they had been raped, which reflects the difficulty of determining what constitutes consent in drunken sex, even for the people involved. Such studies consistently find this discrepancy between women’s self-reported attitudes and how researchers classify their responses.

    …In its definition of rape, the CDC’s “National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence” survey includes sex that occurred when the victim was drunk or high, regardless of whether she was incapacitated or unable to give consent…A woman could list instances of consensual sex she had while intoxicated that she did not consider to be rape — that were in fact not rape — and the researchers would nonetheless classify her as a rape victim.

    I agree with the author’s conclusion:

    None of this is to deny that rape obviously can and frequently does occur in cases where alcohol is involved. Nor is it to say that the prevalence of sexual assault on college campuses is not a serious problem. It is. It is serious enough to merit addressing without resorting to inflated statistics. And these numbers point to a larger problem with the culture of our colleges. The bogus “one in five” formulation does more to obscure the issue than to honestly address it.

    Then again, to justify the sweeping federal response that the president has ordered to address the problem, he probably needs a bit of hyperbole.

    • Human2013

      If hyperbole is needed to resolve the issue, let the hyperbole role on. If the number is closer to 5%, it is still astounding.

      • brettearle

        It’s a good point.

        But if the statistics are skewed–and I don’t know that they are or they aren’t–then such numbers would create a false impression of danger.

        Universities can’t be expected to be sanctuaries.

        But when a coed is transiting, from adolescence to young adulthood, we don’t want to see her enter an environment where she must watch her back, even more than she might ordinarily.

        • Human2013

          We will never have accurate statistics on assaults sexual in nature. It is a very private, painful matter for most victims.

          • Coastghost

            Yet the White House is eager to launch a fresh public crusade based upon unreliable data? to what end, pray tell?

          • brettearle

            That sounds, unfortunately, likely.

            But would you not agree that accurate statistics, on False Accusation, are likely not even close to the point of scientific collection?

        • keltcrusader

          I hate to burst your bubble, but most women grow up watching their backs, always! You never know who is going to be a predator, it might be someone you know well or not at all. It is always better to be safe than sorry, but even then there is always a chance that you could be assaulted. If anyone needs better explaining about sexuality, personal boundaries, what constitutes actual consent and what doesn’t, it is young men, not young women. Young women need to take care, but the onus should not always be on them.

      • Coastghost

        Reliance on hyperbolic arguments and exaggerated statistics will in no way resolve the issue: it only will help generate attention (as today) initially, then the hyperbolic arguments and exaggerated statistics will be discounted and discredited appropriately.

    • brettearle

      Who’s doing the research, the National Association of Men?

      • OnPointComments

        I’m sorry, I can’t take your comment seriously because it was likely written by a male.

        • Ray in VT

          Obviously.

  • anamaria23

    If colleges did something about the huge alcohol and pot consumption on campus,’ some of this problem might be helped. Immature people do things under the influence that thy may not otherwise. It is surprising so many students actually graduate considering the vast substance abuse.

    • Human2013

      I agree. While i’m in no way placing this in the lap of college aged women, they have to be very cautious when consuming large amounts of alcohol and other drugs. Inhibitions are lowered and men will use it as an opportunity.

      • Ray in VT

        I think that people need to look out for each other. In college most of the time when my friends partied they did it at a friend’s place where at least a couple of people were sober and were keeping an eye on things.

    • J__o__h__n

      Prohibition is really helping students to drink in moderation. Then again, it could be just part of the American culture of excess as food is legal and two thirds are either overweight or obese.

  • Coastghost

    FIVE WOMEN GUESTS, without one heterosexual male?
    Asserting that “sexual assault” is “a women’s issue” is almost exactly as fatuous as asserting that “abortion” is solely “a women’s issue”.
    Today’s guest list seems calculated to promote (more) feminist hysteria.

    • Ray in VT

      Yup, just more of them ladies out to take down men.

      • brettearle

        Ray, you know I have a great deal of respect, for your work, on this Forum.

        But why isn’t it important to receive a more balanced view?

        Men can frequently be ogres, certainly.

        But we don’t want to exaggerate the problem, to such a degree, that simply by being Male, you are under suspicion.

        I would argue that this kind of pervasive anxiety goes on already.

        Maybe the statistics are being exaggerated for political purposes.

        Maybe not.

        But the least we could do is hear a Male voice, on the issue, who might be a social scientist.

        • Ray in VT

          I didn’t really look at the guest list first thing, and I don’t really feel that the choice of guests necessarily says anything regarding the angle of the show. I think that that will be borne out by the comments of the guests, so I’m just trying not to prejudge. I do rather take issue with the sort of supposed anti-male stance that is being taken.

          • brettearle

            Thanks.

            Hope you’re right about the guests.

          • J__o__h__n

            No one from law enforcement either (not that I want the cellphone snooper from yesterday on the panel).

    • John Cedar

      All sexual assaults are not created equally. I am sure I have been technically sexually assaulted before by a few ladies who initially would not take “no” for an answer. And what man hasn’t had their butt grabbed by someone who was not invited to do so and who persisted? Of course I am physically capable of stopping the assault and stopping it from escalating, which makes it not comparable to man on woman assaults. But it does conflate the issue when rape is thrown in to the same giant statistic as the crimes that Bill Clinton is guilty of.

      • jimino

        So you are a creep who is full of himself too. I guess I’m not surprised

      • nj_v2

        Bill Clinton?! WTF?

        • John Cedar

          Someone else brought him up earlier, so he was already in my minds.
          But since so many women accused him of sexual assault, sexual misconduct, including exposing himself and rape and forced touching, he is a good example or else a good example of multiple women lying about sex crimes. Take your pick.

  • DougGiebel

    What will be done to prevent false accusations and wrongful punishment as the numbers of investigations increase? “Witch Hunts” happen. Lives and reputations can be ruined. People lie. Biased investigators and unfair procedures happen.

    • John Cedar

      Nothing.
      There will always be Duke lacrosse collateral damage and there will always be racist Duke lacross prosecutors. And no politician that matters will ever care. Better to convict 2% -11% innocent men than to let one rapist go free.

      • Ray in VT

        So, are you under the impression that all false accusations result in a conviction? That is interesting. Also, upon what grounds to you make the charge of racism in the Duke case? Yet another case of the system being prejudiced by white people against white people?

        • brettearle

          Ray….I can’t agree.

          False accusations can destroy a person’s reputation–without a Conviction.

          The buzz and the gossip remains.

          False accusation can result in serious Anguish, exorbitant Legal fees, and unjust Public Humiliation.

          Once someone puts a false finger on you, you are put in a position where you are Compelled to deny something that is a total Outrage.

          To this day, I am sure that the person(s) who were falsely identified by the NY Post, was it?, as the Marathon terrorist(s), might have likely had to have tinted their hair or wear glasses, etc.

          And what about Richard Jewel?

          Even if you don’t become a public figure, word can often get out in the Community.

          • Ray in VT

            Oh, I will not argue with you at all about the terrible effects of a false accusation. There was also the case of Brian Banks, who served time on a rape conviction and was told by his accuser that she made it up. It derailed a promising football career. However, not every rightly or wrongly accused person gets (mostly) his name dragged through the mud, and I object to the suggestion that vast numbers of innocent people get convicted rather than “than to let one rapist go free”.

          • brettearle

            Thanks for your response.

            I take your point.

            However, I leave you with the following claim by Harvey Silverglate–for whom I have a great deal of Respect:

            He claims that up to 50% of inmates, in Federal Prisons, are innocent.

            I find that difficult to believe. But, considering the source, I have to give it some credence.

          • AliceOtter33

            I simply cannot understand the level of fear surrounding the possibility of false accusation of rape. No other crime is discussed this way.

          • brettearle

            It’s because of the consequences and the stigma.

            Why can’t you understand?

            Women have destroyed men’s lives, a number of times, before, for False Accusation.

            However, I would agree that there are MORE legitimate claims by women–without a doubt–than false claims.

            BUT that doesn’t mean that false claims aren’t on the RISE.

          • brettearle

            Did you not find my comment reasonable, below?

    • brettearle

      You’re right.

      And it’s been getting worse for a while, I believe.

      But I think that, more and more, as a Backlash to the Backlash, legal penalties for false accusations, will likely increase.

    • AliceOtter33

      Indeed. Victims of rape are often falsely accused of consenting to their rapes because they are deemed too drunk, slutty, or stupid to deserve not to be raped.

      Thus, they are often wrongly punished by the inevitable witch hunt to uncover all the ways in which they may have drunkenly, sluttily, or stupidly caused their own rapes.

      Meanwhile, their sexual, emotional, academic, and social lives are ruined.

      Because people lie, biased investigators and unfair procedures need big time reform.

      • brettearle

        It’s a very good point

        But, why are you leaving out false accusations against Men?

        Because the commenter, that you’re responding to, is not thinking of false accusations against victims?

        There’s plenty of false accusations to go around.

        • AliceOtter33

          That is my point.
          The commenter I responded to is simply not thinking of the victims. And yet, this fear of false accusations reads like a laundry list of the systemic injustice that rape victims already experience.

          • brettearle

            Thank you.

            But do you agree that there’s plenty of False Accusation to go around, on all sides?

          • JS

            I think there’s plenty to go around, but I don’t think it is equally divided.

          • brettearle

            I think you’re likely right.

    • keltcrusader

      So was it better when women always took the fall for it? That happened quite a bit in the not so recent past and you still hear “well she shouldn’t have dressed, acted, walked, talked, trusted, drank, went on a date and let him pay etc ad infinitum and then she wouldn’t have been assaulted”. When do the men in this equation take some responsibility for their actions?

  • OnPointComments

    Sexual assault in America: Do we know the true numbers?
    Published on Apr 28, 2014

    Sexual assault is a terrible problem that America must solve. The CDC claims that 1-in-5 women in the US will be a victim of rape in their lifetime, a substantially different figure than Department of Justice crime statistics. Christina Sommers says that the CDC’s exaggerated numbers get in the way of genuine solutions to the problem, and calls for accurate data and real solutions to help end the scourge of sexual violence.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNsJ1DhqQ-s#t=34

  • Gary_Disqus

    I know that many victims opt not to pursue rapists through the criminal justice system. But sometimes I get the sense that institutions may actually counsel victims not to report rapes to police. An example would be the recent events at Brown, where the victim asserts this. I have heard (on a different NPR program) a university spokesperson respond to this issue by stating that they explain a victim’s rights and then follow their wishes. This seemed to me to be a way of ducking the issue or putting the responsibility for lack of prosecution mainly on the victim. It seems to me that part of the response to a victim’s coming forward ought to be at least one interview with a representative of the police departments unit charged with investigating such crimes. The college or university has interests that may be in conflict with the interests of the victim. Having a discussion with someone without such interests seems like it would be a good idea. If a discussion with the police won’t be acceptable to the institution, how about someone from a community rape crisis center, who would also be independent and have only the victim’s well being in mind?

  • J__o__h__n

    Victims of any crime should report it to the police and not to a system that has an incentive to try to keep their crime stats down.

    • JS

      Amen brother.

  • AliceOtter33

    An ounce of prevention: Why not encourage parents and sex ed curriculum to address the issue of sexual assault and sexual abuse in middle school? Terms like “rape”, “consent”, “assault” need defining and discussion long before kids are even in the realm of confronting the real thing.

    • brettearle

      When are children ever going to find ways to be children?

      Just think: Police guards outside of a school because of Newtown.

      And rape counselors inside the school because of statistics.

      • AliceOtter33

        I wish I could preserve the magic of childhood, but that would be a fool’s errand. Kids deserve to have these issues addressed so that they can protect themselves and each other.

        • brettearle

          Do you think we can strike a reasonable balance in the Future?

          The World is still NOT totally crazy.

  • Lisa

    Thank you for this program. Here’s my story: http://commonhealth.wbur.org/?s=steubenville&x=20&y=6

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Don’t expect much from Obama on this. He’s shown little leadership in any area save the back 9 at Andrews AFB.

    Now watch this drive!
    –Barack H. Obama, not the guy you though I was

  • James Patrick Dwyer Jr.

    I wonder what would happen if the legal drinking age of 21 was strictly enforced. Teenagers and booze is not a good combination.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Folks are the architects of their own lives. Including being responsible for not being victimized in life. It’s not like women still fainted in public from the vapours.

    We could always bring back The Draft. And force wimpy, juvenile males to grow up*. Like it did to me.

    * Before you left boot camp.

    • JS

      So, women are responsible for their own rapes, and without the Draft, you would have been a rapist?

    • nj_v2

      Please, Disque give us an “ignore ___________ (selected screen name) function).

  • Coastghost

    The complication of the question is not being addressed. Apparently, we are NOT discussing the actual incidence of “rape”: no, the 20% figure being cited covers “sexual assault”, for which we STILL fifteen minutes in are hearing no specific definition offered.

    • OnPointComments

      What statement does it make when the White House decides that the actual, real rates of sexual assault aren’t alarming enough to warrant action, and instead relies on wildly exaggerated statistics? Am I the only one who finds it infuriating that those who cite the bogus 20% statistic are in essence telling victims of sexual assault that what happened to you isn’t terrible enough to warrant action, so we’ll fabricate and exaggerate another percentage.

      • JS

        Why do you consider the 20% assault rate bogus?

        • matt10023

          I’ve read the studies. They have questions like, “Have you ever had sex while intoxicated”. Women who answer yes are classified as rape victims, even when most of them when then asked if they were raped answer “no”. Rape happens, but the definition can lead to wide swings in incidence.

    • brettearle

      Why aren’t you splitting hairs, to some degree?

      It’s like the famous quote by Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart. You know it when you see it.

      I understand that there might be fine technicalities in the Law–and that’s what you are likely referring to. But a woman ought to know it. And if she doesn’t, then that, in itself, is a serious matter and problem.

      • J__o__h__n

        Crimes really need to be specifically defined. I know it when I see it, isn’t a good enough standard to lock someone up.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Mace and tasers first. Lawsuits second.

    Even young girls can kick out a man’s kneecap with only about 10 pounds of force. When the knee stops working, the attacker’s focus shrinks to his pain centers. Then you take the head out with the second kick. Attack event O-V-E-R.

  • iccheap

    The University in my town clearly advertises the reports of assaults in the paper and via email notification to student/staff/faculty. The disconcerting aspect of this is the small number of victims that pursue prosecution. We need our women empowered and our men to understand what their actions really mean. How would these men feel if it were their mother, or sister? Our society is littered with women who’ve experienced sexual assault. It’s a black eye on all of us.

    • brettearle

      Advertising reports, without substantiation is OUTRAGEOUS. You mean with names?

      I cannot, for the Life of me, figure out why that practice has not been successfully challenged in the Courts.

      • iccheap

        nope, all anonymous. really no details, other than an assault occurred at a dorm, or a fraternity. i assume EtOH is involved in nearly 100% of the cases.

    • Alchemical Reaction

      Ashamed at the weakness of women’s solidarity.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Ads from beta males. Not exactly comforting let alone inspiring.

  • Ricardo

    In the recent Dartmouth case, the accuser had a serious drinking problem often having two shot of vodka just to do her homework; during the alleged incident of assault, she had a lot to drink. She remained anonymous while the young man’s name was in the local papers for months (as well as his picture). When all of the facts were put on the table, the young man was exonerated, but many still thought he was guilty. The young woman’s name never saw the light of day, even though she lied about what happened. So, in this case, who is the real victim? The young man decided to move on to another school with his life; the young woman was not required to “lean in” with her name tag on. It’s time to stop protecting so-called victims; they need to step up to the plate.

  • Coastghost

    Campus sexual assault constitutes “an epidemic”, Sen. McCaskill assures us: ahhh, reliable therapeutic rhetoric!

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Get rid of the overstuffed, campus rent-a-cops and put the college under the responsibility of local, armed police forces. Due process under the law. You paid for it; you might as well use it.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Yep. Rape, like liquor store robbery, isn’t a federal crime. So asking Senator Doodah is a waste of time. It’s a local issue. Like most things.

  • Kyle

    Why is “innocent until proven guilty” thrown out the window when it comes to sexual assault? The men involved have their names used even before being proven guilty and it ruins their lives forever. The problem here is that the definition of “sexual assault” is so nebulous. At college we were told that having sex required a verbal contract, but intoxicated individuals (even 1 drink) are not able to join into a contract, so having sex with a girl who has even 1 drink is “sexual assault” or “rape”. That is a problem which needs correcting, because consensual sex after a couple of drinks should not make the man a “rapist”

    • matt10023

      People want to send men a message – even if some of them are innocent of rape.

      • ChristopherMAnderson

        Men are also victims, and women are also perpetrators.

    • ChristopherMAnderson

      Why is actually offering compassion and support to survivors contingent on a determination of guilt?

      • Kyle

        Where did I say anything against compassion and support? I said that you can’t accuse the men before it has been proven. Of course you can offer compassion and support to the victims.

        • ChristopherMAnderson

          How about not bothering to discount the experiences of survivors who make allegations and then commit suicide by using “quotes” when you refer to them?

          I’m all for a fair hearing and due process. We need a justice system that does that. But comments like yours send a horrific message to many surviviors who are already struggling with feelings of shame, stigma, and fear.

    • AliceOtter33

      I can think of no other crime that causes more fear and outrage at the possibility of false accusation. And yet, accused rapists are often rallied around by indignant supporters even as their “alleged” victims commit suicide.

      • Kyle

        I would love to live in a world where 100% of crimes were reported, and convicted, and 0% of innocent people went to prison, but I don’t know of a way to make that happen, other than putting cameras in everyone’s private residences, which obviously no one wants to do. It is a difficult issue, but I know friends who have had to settle out of court with women who were happily performing sexual actions with them previously. He had to pay off a false accuser because of the fact that even without a conviction, a man going to court for a rape accusation is stigmatized

  • skelly74

    Students and military recruits “expect” these institutions to protect them? Ok, agreed. They need basis protection and support, but how about some personal responsibility for their own actions. Adults are supposed to be aware of their personal well-being. Children need constant monitoring.

    • JS

      Yes, those raped women need to take responsibility for their rape. Or many rapists just shouldn’t rape?

      • Kyle

        Lets look at 2 situations:
        1. a girl goes to a party has a few drinks, has sex with a guy, then regrets it and charges him with rape. According to the legal definition, because she was intoxicated, she was raped. This will destroy the guy’s future because she regretted her decision (don’t say this doesn’t happen I know people it has happened to)
        2. A girl gets so drunk she can’t stand up straight, and a guy has sex with her. I think most people would agree this is rape.
        3. A girl goes out with a guy and at the end of the night, he forces himself on her. I think most people would agree this is rape.
        Because situation 1 happens too often, it makes it harder to react to situation 2 and 3 properly. We need to redefine these laws about rape so that situation 2 and 3 can be acted on, but men in situation 1 aren’t wrongly accused or even convicted of rape.

        • JS

          Situation 1 happens, but not nearly as often as numbers 2 and 3. Id number 1 happens, don’t you think a person might be more likely to talk about that, as opposed to someone talking about how they were raped?

          I agree that false accusations should be dealt with severely. But I’ve known cases of “false accusations” that, in realty, were real rapes where the victim was unable to prove it, or was persuaded to retract the report.

        • TFRX

          For your situation #1: Don’t say that happens in the numbers you think it has.

      • matt10023

        When some argue that intoxication prevents a women from giving consent which means she was raped, that’s where we have a question of responsibility.

        Buried in the 20% are many women who didn’t think they were raped, but because they had sex after drinking, some people would like to prosecute their partner as a rapist.

        That kind of thinking creates conditions for “victim blaming.” If we can step away from these extremist ideas (drunk sex always means rape), it would make it easier for people to focus on the assaults where women who feel they were raped don’t have to explain themselves.

      • skelly74

        Yes responsibility. There are many degrees of intoxication. Take responsibility for your actions and inhibitions.

        morning after regret and shame does not ALWAYS mean that the women was raped, even if the support groups influence her that it is because she consumed alcohol.

      • skelly74

        That potential “rapist” is the same inexperienced man-child who may have consumed enough alcohol to lower his inhibitions just like the women-child. They may both have regrets, but she has support to guide her through the “rules” of institutions.

        • JS

          Really, seems to me that a lot of “institutions” care more about their reputation and would prefer the rape isn’t reported.

  • AliceOtter33

    Rape culture and the bystander effect goes all the way up to a law enforcement system that does not prioritize rape as a crime even worth prosecuting from the beginning.

    Yesterday, we were all whining about police wanting to fish through our cell phones without warrants.

    Let’s direct some of that outrage toward the fact that *400,000 rape-kits* are currently lying around unprocessed in U.S. police departments:
    http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor/2014/03/12/unprocessed_rape_kits_cost_concerns_can_t_explain_the_400_000_kit_backlog.html

    How dare law enforcement argue to fast-track the illegal gathering of digital evidence (that is ultimately more expensive to process than) and not give a flying fish about processing the existing rape case evidence that has been gathered legally?

    • matt10023

      I think you’ve mixed things up a bit. The current supreme court case on warrentless searches of cell phones has nothing to do with rape kits.

      • AliceOtter33

        My point is that the law has no teeth when it comes to investigating rape when basic, legally collected evidence is seen as not important enough to deal with or to put funding into processing.

        • matt10023

          I think I can agree with your point on the funding – which is why I’m concerned about distortions which divert resources from women who need support to already overly staffed campuses.

  • ChristopherMAnderson

    Sadly, there is one major area of focus that is being overlooked. Males are also victims of sexual violence and abuse in staggeringly high numbers as well. Currently, we are only addressing a small sliver of a problem with sexual violence that impacts every American in one way or another. The CDC estimates that 1 in 4.5 males and more than 1 of every 2 females will experience some form of sexual abuse (a term encompassing far more types of perpetration than just rape). Yet instead of presenting the full data from the NiSVS, many reports on this issue focus on statistics for rape, and actually grossly underreport the true prevalence of sexual violence in our society. Meanwhile, few organizations that fight for support for female victims give any attention or resources at all to male victims.

    We all know survivors. But few of us know who the survivors in our circles of friends and acquaintances are because it simply isn’t safe for survivors to come forward. This is especially true for the boys and men who have been sexually abused for a myriad of reasons including:

    - the virtual silence about our existence
    - the lack of resources for male survivors in most communities
    - the marginalization of male survivors that is rampant in reports such as this one and the recent WH Counsel on Women and Girls report that grossly understated the number of male victims
    - the stereotypes and gender norms that make it almost impossible for men to feel safe addressing and publicly or privately disclosing that they have been victimized

    We will never adequately address the problem of sexual violence we face in this society unless and until we have a sexual violence prevention and response strategy that manages to include all people of all genders, and does not make blanket assumptions about men in general. It has been established by multiple studies (for example see the work of David Lisak cited in the recent letter to the White House by RAINN) that it is a vast minority of males who perpetrates sexual violence on college campuses. Yet the vast majority of males are told they have to not rape, while few, if any, male victims get the support they need.

    Tufts University students and survivors John Kelly and Jordan Dashow are just 2 of a growing number of male voices that are trying to raise awareness of these issues. I sincerely hope that we can continue to build the necessary bridges needed to make sure that ALL survivors are included in the work of prevention and healing.

    Christoper M. Anderson
    Executive Director, MaleSurvivor

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    I took Judo when I was in 2nd grade and into high school. From US Air Force instructors. Willie Nelson just got his 5th dan* at the age of 81. What’s stopping the rest of you from educating yourself in personal protection arts?

    * Karate. Degrees in black belt are sometimes simply referred to as 3rd dan, 5th dan, 8th dan (Sandan, Godan, Hachidan}.

    • AnneDH

      Two reasons we enrolled our daughters in karate:
      1) Self-assurance
      2) Self-defence

  • Coastghost

    Why not give due thanks to the advent of female contraception?

    • J__o__h__n

      Former Republican senate candidate Todd Aiken claimed that women who were raped couldn’t get pregnant.

    • JS

      Did that lead to more rape?

      • Coastghost

        I suspect that many men, assured by medical science and female appropriation that intercourse will likely not result in pregnancy, are willing to believe that female contraceptive practice entails some degree of consent. (Id est: I hear no one arguing that the advent of female contraception has led to LOWER reportage of rape or sexual assault.)

        • JS

          I’m amazed at that comment. As a guy, rape is the furthest thing from my mind. WHy do you suspect that? Is Not Raping just too hard to phantom?

        • Ray in VT

          Do you have some research regarding the percentage of men who think that they can have their way a woman if the woman is taking contraceptives?

          • Coastghost

            I suspect locating those data would be as much an adventure as locating dependable data concerning both the incidence of sexual assault and the incidence of false allegations of sexual assault.

          • Ray in VT

            There’s plenty out there regarding the second, and some studies regarding the third, but please inform me as to where you have found some evidence about the former, except, perhaps, from the statements of convicted rapists.

          • Coastghost

            Ray: I’m relying on no statistical data, I’m offering the view based on my general acquaintance with run-of-the-mill humanity: that is, my working sense of human stupidity is informed somewhat by the pioneering efforts of the late economic historian Carlo M. Cipolla.

          • Ray in VT

            So it’s some b.s. that you’ve pulled out of your rear?

          • Coastghost

            So you can begin to launch your own investigation, Ray:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carlo_M._Cipolla

          • Ray in VT

            Why, did he conduct such research?

          • Coastghost

            Cipolla seems to’ve devoted much more attention to the subject than has any other economic historian. (BTW: I do discern Cipolla’s satiric capability, which I cite as evidence of the seriousness of the subject.)

          • Ray in VT

            The link between ladies taking the pill and men getting to have their way with them?

          • Coastghost

            Cipolla does not seem to argue that stupidity is gender-specific, Ray.

          • Ray in VT

            Would you also like to present evidence for women who also believe as you have proposed? In my experience, though, it does seem to more often be the case that men are the most boneheaded ones, but that is only in my experience.

          • Coastghost

            The ready imputation of rational ability to both men and women may in fact be another example of gross exaggeration and hyperbolic indulgence.

          • Ray in VT

            Care to enlighten us as to which sex you think may be less rational?

          • Coastghost

            I think most sex is irrational.

  • Human2013

    I can’t help but think that most of the problem is in the nature of men and women. Women certainly are naive as to the intentions of the men they encounter — especially in the college-aged years. While most hope for a genuine interest in them, that doesn’t always align with the physical desires of men. Women have to understand the overwhelming physical desires of men in this age group. If he calls you at 1AM, its not to discuss a budding relationship, it is to fulfill his needs.

    • JS

      Can’t the men just not rape? I haven’t had a problem not raping for 45 years now, and i’m sure my streak would continue for many more years.

      • Human2013

        Many of the research shows that women are uncertain as to whether they consider it rape or not. I’m assuming that’s because they felt they put themselves in a compromising situation. They likely gave into the man’s request with reservations. My point is that there is a lot of gray here — it’s not just black and white. It’s best to keep your first encounters to public places while you’re trying to decide if you’ll sleep with him.

      • matt10023

        JS, don’t be so sure of yourself. If we applied the often stated condition that people cannot consent when intoxicated, you very well may have raped someone.

      • Alchemical Reaction

        That is because you are not a sociopath.

    • Karen

      Women “have to understand the overwhelming physical desires of men in this age group”? Do they?
      I don’t think so. If some guy is experiencing some “overwhelming physical desire”, that’s his issue. A woman that he “calls at 1AM” is not responsible for his needs in any way.
      Obviously there are other ethical and safe ways for this “overwhelmed” male to behave.

      Rape is violent and demeaning to the other person (female or male). It’s never OK, should not be allowed, and is a crime.

      • Human2013

        I wouldn’t walk into the icy ocean in winter or into an adverse part of town in the middle of night. We have to make thoughtful decisions in order to guarantee our safety.
        Women know that these situations can lead to awful situations. So yes, we need to be aware of the desires of men in the same way we need to be mindful of any other unsafe situation.
        BTW, don’t construe my comments with the justification of rape.

  • Ed75

    The White House has also ended funding for abstinence education programs.

    I would recommend a reading of Pope Paul’s encyclical Humanae Vitae to see a different view of human sexuality, and how incorrect views lead to problems.

    • JS

      Yes, because there was no rape problems before the ending of abstinence programs.

    • J__o__h__n

      Abstinence worked so well for the priests (even during Paul’s papacy).

    • TFRX

      Incorrect views do lead to problems.

  • Bart caruso

    Can’t help but wonder if this has something to do with the U.S Sports Mania.(The “Circuses” part of our waning Empire) I have heard that promising high-school athletes are lured by College Recruiters with women ,among other things. Also University Police work FOR the University,i.e. to protect their image.Perhaps this leads to hushing-up rapes.

  • Coastghost

    Has “bystander intervention” faced one single solitary review by one single solitary court? What kind of appeal to vigilantism is being made here?

    • JS

      Not sure what you are referring to, but at college I saw a guy sexually harassing a woman, in front of his fraternity brothers, who seemed uncomfortable but didn’t respond. i said, “Hey, cut that out” and they the other guys joined in ridiculing the guy, making HIM feel like the ass that he was, and he left her alone. What’s so hard about understanding that?

      • Coastghost

        I’m thinking of a test case in which an intervening bystander assaults someone or in which an intervening bystander is assaulted for his “civic activism”.

      • Alchemical Reaction

        Because all shaming him did was delay his act, and cause his resentment of women to grow.

        So when he acts out next time, it will be when no one is around, and with significantly MORE violence!

        • JS

          Not necessarily. He was acting stupid, i didn’t think he had any deep seated resentment of women. He just took it too far, and his peers ridiculed him for it.
          What would you suggest be done in that situation?

          • Alchemical Reaction

            If this was just horseplay and there was no malice involved, his fraternity brothers were also guilty of bullying, probably to make themselves seem more appealing to the woman by “standing up” for her.

            Thus, they are pigs too.

          • JS

            foolish troll

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Yes, they are foolish trolls.

            You on the other hand, have the intellect of a blow fly.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Do you want guns on campus like available now in the Enlightened State of Georgia?

    “Cover me, Roxanne. I’m going to get a library book.”

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    The White House is going to be as effective on the issue of campus assault as it is on the Russian assault on Ukraine.

  • Hollis Monroe

    The vice president tends to paint in broad, black and white strokes. I was on the sharp end of an armed female/male physically abusive situation, wherein, as a man, I felt hobbled in defending myself. The societal compunctions that had been drilled into me (i.e., “men don’t hit women” and “women are the weaker sex”) actually placed me into the role of the victim. I’m afraid I find Mr. Biden’s remark, “no man has a right to raise his hand to a woman” to be, at best, fallacious or at worst pandering.

    • matt10023

      Not to mention domestic abuse stats indicate women are often the aggressors. Biden is a politician and they have been trained to avoid nuance.

  • JasonB

    The schools should not be sole, or even primary, entity dealing with this. This should be dealt with by the local authorities. Sexual assault is a crime and should be dealt with by law enforcement.

  • ChristopherMAnderson

    More recent information challenging the idea that sexual assault victims are overwhelmingly female and perpetrators are overwhelmingly male

    The Sexual Victimization of Men in America: New Data Challenge Old Assumptions
    http://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/abs/10.2105/AJPH.2014.301946

    A new study reveals that men are often the victims of sexual assault, and women are often the perpetrators.
    http://www.slate.com/articles/double_x/doublex/2014/04/male_rape_in_america_a_new_study_reveals_that_men_are_sexually_assaulted.html

    Male Sexual Victimization

    Examining Men’s Experiences of Rape and Sexual Assault
    http://jmm.sagepub.com/content/12/3/275.abstract

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Quoting a US Senator or a White House official is essentially throwing your hands up and accepting the situation as it is. Nothing important happens in D.C.

  • J__o__h__n

    The campus should support the student but it should not be a replacement for the criminal justice system. If victims do not go to the police, they are part of the problem. Sending rapists to jail is going to send a bigger message to potential rapists than presidential commissions, rallies, support groups, campus protests, etc.

  • hennorama

    Holy chit, lady! What century are you living in?

    • Joe Mahma

      The century where women are still being sexually assaulted by men.

      • hennorama

        Joe Mahma — thank you for your response.

        As “The century where women are still being sexually assaulted by men” is every century since humans first walked the Earth, I don’t understand your point.

        Would you care to elaborate?

        Thanks again for your response.

        • Joe Mahma

          Simply: That women ARE being sexually assaulted. Therefore, caution is STILL necessary on behalf of women. In THIS century… still. As before, always, and more than likely in the next century.

          • hennorama

            Joe Mahma –thank you again for your response.

            By way of reply, I’ll cite [keltcrusader]‘s comment below:

            keltcrusader [reply to] brettearle • 2 hours ago

            I hate to burst your bubble, but most women grow up watching their backs, always! You never know who is going to be a predator, it might be someone you know well or not at all. It is always better to be safe than sorry, but even then there is always a chance that you could be assaulted. If anyone needs better explaining about sexuality, personal boundaries, what constitutes actual consent and what doesn’t, it is young men, not young women. Young women need to take care, but the onus should not always be on them.

            Because of the constancy of the incidence of unwanted sexual contact of all sorts, girls and women have been instilled with the need to both use caution, and take precautions.

            This means they are never truly free.

            They live with fear, big and small, founded and unfounded, fear that anywhere they go, anything they do, anyone they may be with could pose a threat.

            If you believe that women are not already cautious, you are misinformed.

            Thank you again for your response.

          • Joe Mahma

            I’ve read plenty of news reportage of sexual assault, so it seems ALL women sometimes don’t exercise the requisite caution.

          • hennorama

            Joe Mahma — TY again for your response.

            I infer from your comments that you believe that if “ALL women [would only, and always] exercise the requisite caution,” you would never again “read plenty of news reportage of sexual assault.”

            Please correct any misinferences.

            Thanks again for your response.

  • JS

    Is this woman serious? Women are responsible for guys raping them?!?

    • Joe Mahma

      Yeah, and she’s right. You can’t just wish potential sexual assault away with ideals.

      • JS

        She’s right that woman are responsible for their rapes? How about guys not raping?!?!? You are guy, how hard is it for you not to rape? If a woman was passed out drunk in front of you, would you just have to rape her?

        • Stephen706

          Do you really think that is the norm? The only people that know what happens is the 2 people alone in the room. Most guys don’t equate having sex with rape

        • Joe Mahma

          Again I say: “You can’t just wish potential sexual assault away with ideals.”

          Just because something is wrong, immoral, or illegal, doesn’t mean it’s not going to happen or that you shouldn’t have to exercise caution so it doesn’t happen.

          How many times do parents of young kids say “NO?” Probably 100,000 times by the time they’re riding a bicycle. Now, they could just hope the child doesn’t touch the stove, because it’s obviously hot, but we know that’s not gonna happen.

          • JS

            I am not wishing them away, just amazed that the focus is on women taking precautions, and not on men not raping.

          • Joe Mahma

            You keep repeating the same mantra over and over again “men shouldn’t rape” like it’s something we just learned as a society. The focus is on women taking precautions because of the caller who said as much, not because anyone is necessarily making that distinction.

            You can say “men REALLY shouldn’t rape” as loud and as often as you want, but it’s just as valid to say “women need to be cautious.”

          • JS

            No, that’s exactly the point, it’s NOT as valid. You really think woman taking precautions is the same as a man not raping?

            Society teaches “Don’t get raped” instead of “Don’t rape”.

          • Joe Mahma

            “Valid,” Holmes, I said “valid.”

      • nj_v2

        The troglodytes crawl out of their hovels.

      • brettearle

        What do you mean she’s right?

        Are you Nutz?

        Women ought to take necessary precautions–like not walking late at night alone in a high crime district or getting to know someone well before becoming more intimate–but…

        No woman is responsible for being Raped.

        What are you talking about?

        • Joe Mahma

          I don’t believe I ever said (in my life) that a woman was ever “responsible for being Raped.”

  • TFRX

    Caller Carla at :53 says “Women don’t have responsibility for their own safety”?

    Whaaaaa?

    Too busy laughing and sputtering at her anecs to put it in sentences.

    When an NPR host is reduced to “I’m not sure what you’re saying…” to a caller’s info.

    • iccheap

      yes, i always thought sex was a consensual act. barring that, it’s somewhere between coercive to criminal.

    • Joe Mahma

      How is this not obviously true??? Let’s look at the girl who was sexually assaulted by the football players (the “Rape Crew”) from Steubenville, shall we??? I see a distinct lack of caution and good sense with respect to that woman, sorry to say.

      • AliceOtter33

        I agree that being *unconscious* shows a “distinct lack of caution and good sense” on the part of the victim, since it is physically impossible to exercise anything, let alone caution and good sense, while unconscious.

        The victim in the Steubenville case was photographed by her rapists as she was carried (while unconscious) by her ankles and wrists from party to party where she was treated to non-consensual penetration.

        Drinking to the point of unconsciousness puts one at risk for all kinds of dangerous possibilities, including death.

        It does not, however, constitute tacit consent to being sexually penetrated.

      • JS

        Yes, a teenage or preteen girl reality should be more responsible. I mean, boys gotta rape, right?

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Yes, life is what happens to you. Accept the situation. And prepare yourself for the world that is. Not the fairy tale your parents created for you.

    • JS

      So, if your daughter gets over-powered by someone , possible with more “dans” then her, she should just lie back and accept it?

      • TFRX

        (HLB may be deadpanning the caller’s take in order to mock it. I’m not sure.)

        • JS

          Read some more of his posts, he’s not. He’s a troll, but sometimes I can’t feeding them.

          • Joe Mahma

            A “troll” because their opinion isn’t the popular opinion??? Not quite.

          • JS

            Yes, accepting the rape and moving on is not a popular opinion, is it?

  • JasonB

    Carla doesn’t seem to understand that young people make mistakes. Carla, if a woman is raped she IS a victim!

    • Joe Mahma

      There’s “good sense” and awareness and then there’s recklessness. If I had a daughter, you can bet she’d be well equipped with both of the former. What she’s saying is too many women throw caution to the wind and act as though we live in a kind, gentle, world where predators don’t dwell.

      • JasonB

        Of course, reckless behavior is dangerous regardless. However, It’s a slippery slope to placing blame on the victim.

        • Joe Mahma

          Who is “blaming the victim” when it’s suggested that women exercise some caution??? If you’re a Western woman, you don’t go walking around in a Middle Eastern city with a tube top and short shorts on.

          If you get high and drunk in a car full of high school football players known as the “Rape Crew” and go to a party with them, who knows what’s gonna happen.

          • Mort Sinclair

            The aggressor is always responsible for his/her actions when those actions infringe upon the rights of others. Any sort of thinking that mitigates that responsibility is subscribing to the sort of criminal thinking found in prisons everywhere—”Yeah, but….”

            No “yeah, but.” You hit your wife or girlfriend or kid? You are responsible. You rape someone? You and only you are responsible.

          • Joe Mahma

            If someone goes for a walk late at night in a bad neighborhood and they get mugged, they have to accept SOME degree of responsibility for it regardless of the fact that it’s illegal to assault and rob someone.

            That’s the reality of it. In a perfect world, people wouldn’t do immoral or illegal things, but they do and when we’re talking about the sometimes fine line between rape and actual sex, college age women need to keep their heads screwed on straight.

          • Mort Sinclair

            Nope, they bear no responsibility, legal or otherwise. Sorry, this isn’t Thunderdome yet. People are held accountable for their OWN anti-social and criminal actions, not victims.

          • Joe Mahma

            OK, good luck to you and your kids living in THAT world.

      • JS

        Teach your son Not to rape, Ever! More of that kind of education would help.

        • Joe Mahma

          No kidding it would help. That’s not the issue. The issue is, as the caller said, a little “good sense” and caution would go a long way with respect to women and sexual assault.

          • JS

            Thats is EXACTLY the issue: Don’t Rape, how hard is that to understand.

    • Alchemical Reaction

      A victim of her family’s, and society’s failure to educate her in proper self-defense, clear communication, and understanding of the mind of the male predator.

      After all, a lion is just a lion acting out instinct.

  • Coastghost

    NO victim of sexual assault is EVER responsible? What?

    • AliceOtter33

      Can you please explain a circumstance in which a person is responsible or deserves to be assaulted sexually or otherwise?

      • Coastghost

        I’m not saying anyone deserves sexual assault: I find it utterly ludicrous that anyone can claim with a straight face (ahhh, the magic of radio!) that a victim of sexual assault can in no way, ever, at any time, be thought to have contributed to some miscommunication resulting in unwanted sexual advance.

        • AliceOtter33

          I agree that there should be some acknowledgement of the “possibility of miscommunication resulting in unwanted sexual advance”. And should that sexual advance result in a sexual assault, the miscommunication should be understood as the rapist’s refusal to comply with the victim’s lack of communicated consent.

          • Steve__T

            How about no! means NO! Most men can say it but can’t hear it, or don’t believe it means what it means.

        • JS

          “be thought to have contributed to some miscommunication resulting in unwanted sexual advance.” is not the same as saying she is responsible for the rape, which is what you said, or implied, in the first post

          • Coastghost

            –or, which is how you (mis)construed my first post.
            I’m also not arguing that miscommunication justifies sexual assault: I continue to argue that at least some alleged victims of sexual assault contributed directly to the circumstance of their assault.

      • Joe Mahma

        There’s a thing called “contributory negligence” with respect to seatbelt laws. What it means and why is pretty self-evident and the same could be said (as the caller did) that women need to take some responsibility for how they place themselves in certain social situations.

        • Human2013

          Contrib neg is for the civil tort realm, not criminal matters

    • Joe Mahma

      And nobody should ever be hit by a car just because they cross the street, and yet it happens every day.

      • matt10023

        And it’s not blaming the victim to suggest people look both ways before crossing the street.

        • Joe Mahma

          Exactly.

  • Joe Mahma

    .
    Tom, pull your head out of your azz. The caller who cites lack of responsibility and “good sense” on the part of women is right-on. Women seem to believe that they should be allowed to dress and act the way they want because they simply just shouldn’t be raped or sexually assaulted. Welcome to the real world, where everyone has their own agenda.
    .

    • J__o__h__n

      Women in burqas still get raped.

      • Joe Mahma

        So what? And handicapped women in wheelchairs get raped also.

        • J__o__h__n

          You commented on how they were dressed as being a factor.

          • Joe Mahma

            It’s more about their behavior than anything else.

          • J__o__h__n

            Then why mention how they are dressed?

    • AnneDH

      Yes, there are some women like that, but they are in a small minority. They should not be used as representative of all women who are raped or sexually assaulted. Be careful with your generalizations, Joe.

      • Joe Mahma

        This isn’t about “how many,” this is about the reality of the world. If you had a daughter, how would you feel about her taking a trip to India and riding the bus there?

        • AnneDH

          I have two daughters who would both do a lot of self-preparation about how to dress & behave before going to any foreign country. Plus, they are both trained in karate.

      • brettearle

        Anne,

        I think you have seen me to be reasonable–although you don’t know me well, here.

        Not everyone here will think i am reasonable. But many, here, do.

        There is absolutely no excuse for a man to rape a woman.

        None.

        But for you to suggest that women don’t periodically dress provocatively–or sometimes , at least, dress in an especially sexually appealing way–tells me that you haven’t been looking closely enough at urban life.

        I’m not sure I understand.

        Certainly, there IS a difference of opinion as to what is provocative and what is especially appealing.

        I know many men–and I’m a man–who I have casual conversations with–where we comment about how attractive a woman is who might be happening by.

        And often–though not always–it is because the woman is NOTICEABLY showing off her figure.

        To dress in an appealing manner–or even provocatively–does NOT give the license, whatsoever, for men to try to take advantage of women, in ANY way.

        But THAT doesn’t mean that women can’t be more cautious. And, sometimes, that could mean how they dress.

        • AnneDH

          Of course I agree with you that there is NO excuse for a man to take advantage of women in any way.

          But this is not a black-and-white issue.

          How individuals, both sexes, have been raised, what type of community they come from was not discussed that I remember on this show, and this is a big factor in the issue.

          I can only speak for myself, brought up in a small community in VT, coming out of an upbringing (without disclosing too much personal info about myself) that left me completely afraid of men & vulnerable upon entering college and yet feeling peer pressure to lose my virginity- a subject Tom should focus on with one of his shows.

          This may sound shocking to some, but I think this is a factor in why SOME women allow an otherwise unwanted sexual encounter.

          This is why I paid so much attention to preparing my daughters to be watchful and capable of extracting themselves from uncomfortable situations with men- so far with success.

          • brettearle

            Thanks for your clear and insightful comments….

        • AnneDH

          Another reply for you…. after some thought, I understand better what you are trying to say to me.

          You are right: I have limited urban experience. I do see a lot of provocative dressing on the part of actresses in movies and TV shows that take place in American cities & find it to be quite a contrast to the more conservative dressing where I live.

          It does make me feel sorry for the men in the shows who are subjected to short skirts and breast cleavage on a daily basis. For me, this is communication of sexual availability on the part of the woman. Is this truly typical of female urban wear?

        • AnneDH

          Another reply for you:

          You are correct that I do not have much experience of urban life.

          I’d like to know if what I see of what women wear on an everyday basis – the short skirts and visible cleavage- in movies and television- is typical of everyday wear in American cities?

          We sometimes discuss what this must do to their male counterpart characters in terms of self-control. It would be unusual here in VT.

          • brettearle

            Look for a reply, today or tonight.

            Thanks….

          • brettearle

            Couldn’t get to it. I’ll try tomorrow?

          • AnneDH

            That’s fine, thanks.

    • nj_v2

      I’m surprised Joe put down his cave-man club long enough to type.

      • Joe Mahma

        HAR HAR HAR

    • TFRX

      Seriously?

      Another entrant in the “she went and got herself raped” school of verb conjunction?

      • Joe Mahma

        That’s a stretch, but it’s to be expected from those who see only black and white.

    • JS

      So, do you feel compelled to rape women who dress a certain way?

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Kindergarten fantasies: I’m allowed to do whatever I want and the world must protect me from myself.

    • nj_v2

      Please, please, DIsqus. Give us an “Ignore Selected Screen Name” button.

      • Joe Mahma

        Go to the Huffington Post comments sections. I think that’s more your speed.

  • J__o__h__n

    Encouraging prevention for potential victims is not the same as blaming the victim. We don’t discourage other crimes by just telling people not to be thieves and murderers.

  • Stephen706

    Carla makes very good points!!!! Yes the women may be the “victim” but a lot of these events occur around behaviors and alcohol use/abuse.

    Amazing to hear folks beat up her (and it is HER) observations

    • JS

      I’ve been around alcohol use/abuse, no one ever raped me, and I never raped anyone. Yes, women can take precautions, but should guy not rape? Is that too difficult to teach.: Don’t Rape.

      • brettearle

        Why don’t you believe that to insure safety that a woman can’t be careful, too?

        • JS

          “Yes, women can take precautions” – from the post you responded to.

          I believe everyone should be careful, and that men shouldn’t rape.

      • Stephen706

        True, but often the guy doesn’t know or appreciate that what they are doing in an intimate moment gets translated into an accusation of rape or sexual assault. That comes when the phone call comes or police come to take them down to the station to tell them of their charges along with the right to remain silent and so forth…

        • JS

          So, instead of focusing on women’s actions, shouldn’t most of the focus be on men?

      • Joe Mahma

        It’s not enough. Women need to be cautious also. You keep saying the same thing over and over again but that’s not going to make it a reality.

    • brettearle

      I agree.

      No woman should be blamed for being a victim.

      But that doesn’t mean a woman can’t take necessary precautions to be careful.

      Somebody, below, claims that all women always have a watchful eye.

      So where is the fine line?

      Do we encourage women to walk alone at night in high- crime districts?

      Of course not.

  • Yar

    After scanning the last few comments I am thankful I didn’t listen to the show. I would have been screaming at the radio!

    • brettearle

      Why is that?

      • Yar

        I saw some blame the victim comments.

        • brettearle

          Such comments are inexcusable.

          But how do we know that you are simply not taking it that way–when there could be a difference in interpretation, by reasonable people?

          Point them out.

          • Yar

            No, trying to have a conversation with crazy only serves to make us crazy too. Think how these callous comments are triggers for victims of abuse.

          • Mari McAvenia

            Right you are, Yar. Crazy is catching and the triggers are very real for rape victims, for the rest of their lives.

          • brettearle

            How else are you going to have dialogue that can flush out real credibility?

            Ultimately, if someone can’t answer your inquiry–if it’s Legitimate–it tells us something.

            Why keep the ignorant in Hiding?

  • OnPointComments

    Saying that a behavior isn’t wise (e.g., getting drunk and climbing into bed with someone) isn’t the same as saying that the person is to blame for the sexual assault that occurs afterward.

    • JS

      Absolutely. But saying”getting drunk and climbing into bed with someone” makes the woman responsible for her rape is what the woman caller was saying, and what others n this forum are saying.

      Why not teach men, :Don’t Rape!

      • OnPointComments

        Let’s all remove the locks from our doors and instead teach burglars not to burgle.

        • JS

          I never said people shouldn’t be responsible, but I have never heard anyone say a family deserved to be burgled because they left there door open.

          And thats the difference: yes, they should take precaution, but it is still the rapists fault, and the burglars.

          • Joe Mahma

            It’s not about anything like saying anyone “deserved” anything. How is that even part of the discussion here????

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Are you talking about situations where the intent is rape.

            Or are you talking about ambiguous situations where alcohol is involved, both people are drunk, and there is implied consent?

            Those are not the same.

            In situations where the intent is rape, you think the rapist cares about social justice?

      • brettearle

        Women can’t often judge, or predict, if they are going to be victims of violence.

        But that doesn’t mean that women can’t take necessary precautions.

        I can’t think of anything more prudent then to get to know someone, beforehand, for quite some time–before you get involved in a more intimate way.

      • Mari McAvenia

        Let’s see: thousands of women and girls admit that they have been raped and sexually assaulted – every year – in this country, alone, but no American men have ever admitted to doing it. Could there be one, lone male rapist running around, committing multiple assaults at the same time? I think not. It’s the oldest crime in the world, a grim fact of life for women everywhere, but, somehow, it’s always the female’s fault for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Don’t hold your breath waiting for men to take responsibility for rape and sexual assaults against females. They want to keep getting away with it, as if it’s a masculine birthright. It’s that simple. Men must teach boys that it’s not OK to rape. At least the President said something about it. Finally.

        • OnPointComments

          If we wait for criminals to admit their criminal acts, I think we’ll all be waiting a very long time.

        • Human2013

          I’ve never heard its the females fault — you’re grossly exaggerating. We advise women to be mindful of their peers and their social activities and their consumption of drugs and alcohol.

      • Human2013

        But that’s exactly what we do! Young men know the consequences of raping a women.
        We also need to advise women to be selective in their choice of peers and parties.

        • JS

          First, the point shouldn’t be the consequences! It should be Don’t Rape because Rape is wrong, not because there might be consequences.

          And it seems there are many instances where there are NO consequences

          I think the vast majority of the focus should be on Men not Raping, and also some focus on women being cautious.

      • Danny

        Who is responsible if both parties are equally drunk and climbing in bed together? Is it a race to see who can get to the police first?

        • JS

          Neither is responsible if no rape occurs. If one rapes the other, the rapist is responsible.

          • Danny

            Agreed, but if one person goes to the police because they were unable to consent (too drunk), is the other automatically at fault?

          • JS

            That’s an unfortunate situation, and I am not sure of the legal ramifications.

          • Danny

            The good thing is that this seems to be a rare situation. More often than not, these situations can be avoided.

            We owe it to our young people to teach them how to set firm boundaries, how to make those boundaries known to others, and how to respect the boundaries set by others.

            If you have to beg/plead/coerce/force/etc. someone to do what you want, you are probably crossing a boundary that has been set. Pay attention people!!!

    • Stephen706

      Do you really think a lot of these young men think–wow, she is drunk or stoned of her ass! let me get some while I can!??? No, they don’t have the clue or inclination that is the case–they often think they are getting intimate and having NSA sex. Don’t find out until afterwards

  • Stephen706

    And yes, men do get falsely accused ALOT… 1 in 3 to 1 in 6 by the IG report. This is so glossed over. And have seen it happen in the military and ruin good men’s careers and advancement over the FALSE accusation done to deflect the accuser’s own issues

    YES–and I repeat YES–this is a big issue and it does hurt women who tend to be the victims–although not talked about is the number of young men coerced into sex from women (an interesting topic of research as well).

    Cannot have a one-sided solution where young college men and young soldiers MUST always be the sole people responsible for what happens between two adults who thinks their partner is consenting on her own free will and not from intoxication with post-remorse. Now if unconscious, drugged, altered, yes the smart person would decline–kinda like on the show “Men At Work” where the male did back out of sex the first night despite the females desire. So it is making its way into TV

    Before engaging in coitus, shall we require a Urine Drug Screen, Blood Alcohol Test, a psychiatric evaluation and a warrant/contract from the Judge before proceeding with said activities?

    • brettearle

      You forgot their Astrologer.

      • Stephen706

        Good point.
        There is no easy way on this is my fear on the less obvious cases.

        • brettearle

          I’m with you on all of this.

          You could write my Position Papers on the matter.

          I’ve seen, and know about False Accusation, first hand, with people that I know–or people of people that I know.

          On the other hand, it is important for guys like us, who are Activists for False Accusation, to point out, always–as I have written below and that has been written below by someone else–that there are many more legitimate accusations…..even as the false accusation might be rising.

          • Stephen706

            True. There are two sides to every story. However, in this case, the accused is guilty and never able to prove their innocence except for some extreme fortuitous circumstance that pops up–like audio or video supporting their claim. Otherwise, the accused is simply guilty

          • brettearle

            There is a well-known Attorney who has stated the obvious:

            That Men got to jail for a She said/He said case.

          • bobbyriled

            Yeah! Until proven innocent. And that is inevitably a miscarriage of justice. An outrage.

            When the rules of justice become inverted? What does that mean. Something bad is happening.

            Even Tom Ashbrook who so rarely fails to find the other side — no matter how ludicrous — is all in with the bad.

    • kaaramel

      “Before engaging in coitus, shall we require a Urine Drug Screen, Blood
      Alcohol Test, a psychiatric evaluation and a warrant/contract from the
      Judge before proceeding with said activities?”

      Ans. Yes. I personally think no one should drink alcohol and we shouldn’t even be having sex outside of marriage. I also think that people should thoroughly evaluate, investigate, and know their partners before they marry them.

  • DS

    From my personal experience at an ivy league school in the 1980′s, I’d say frats are a huge part of the problem, in providing a venue for the crime, applying pressure to women to get them into dangerous situations, and then covering up the crime and intimidating the women involved. Obviously, this does not happen at most frats, but some of them developed a clear pattern of sexual harassment. Perhaps the military’s experience with dealing with this is useful, since the psychological landscape in each is similar. In either one, you have to apply to get in, you have to get past some sort of hazing or basic training before you’re fully accepted, and then you become part of a brother/sisterhood with strong expectations of mutual loyalty and secrecy. People aren’t always prepared to struggle with the ethics of reporting a brother/sister and that was what I saw create a lot of problems at a few frats.

    • brettearle

      Well said.

      There’s no accounting for Loyalty in some social environments.

      Peer Pressure is a powerful force, not to stand up for what is Right.

    • Danny

      I think a great step forward would be for the sponsors and leaders of fraternities to change the culture of how women and sex are viewed. If the leaders came out opposed and dismissed any who were guilty of sex crimes, it would go a long way to changing this culture. Look at the NBA commissioner coming out strongly against a team owner. It is all about those who have the power to change the culture to put this change in motion.

  • HonestDebate1

    Here are some handy tips from the University of Colorado:

    1. Be realistic about your ability to protect yourself.

    2. Your instinct may be to scream, go ahead! It may startle your attacker and give you an opportunity to run away.

    3. Kick off your shoes if you have time and can’t run in them.

    4. Don’t take time to look back; just get away.

    5. If your life is in danger, passive resistance may be your best defense.

    6. Tell your attacker that you have a disease or are menstruating.

    7. Vomiting or urinating may also convince the attacker to leave you alone.

    8. Yelling, hitting or biting may give you a chance to escape, do it!

    9. Understand that some actions on your part might lead to more harm.

    10. Remember, every emergency situation is different. Only you can decide which action is most appropriate.”

    I would add farting.

    Or maybe whistles and ball point pens as Democrat Congressmen have suggested.

    Whatever we do let’s not allow women to be armed and let’s keep gun-free zones at colleges. What’s another few thousand rapes a day?

    http://www.frontpagemag.com/2013/dgreenfield/guns-prevent-3600-rapes-a-day/

    • J__o__h__n

      This was sensible until the end. We really need more guns in a situation often resulting from over-consumption of alcohol.

      • HonestDebate1

        Good point, alcohol makes it easier to piss yourself and vomit. That’s better.

    • jefe68

      Guns? That’s sick.

      • HonestDebate1

        Women should be allowed to carry if licensed. Colleges should not be gun-free zones. That would actually empower women to control the situation.

  • TyroneJ

    My observation over 30 years teaching college kids is that in the last 10-15 years, the kids have arrived in greater numbers with inflated senses of entitlement, greater levels of narcissism, and lesser levels of actual competence, with greater levels of helicopter parenting being the largest contributing factor. And I think all of these attributes add up to greater levels of objectifying other people, and so not treating others well, not just members of the opposite sex.

    • Coastghost

      Uncritical appropriation of social media yields intrinsically anti-social behaviors? Who’d’ve thunk?

    • Alchemical Reaction

      Fo Sho, Tyrone.

  • Danny

    So, what happens when 2 people are equally drunk/high/etc and they both are consenting at the time of the act, is it rape?

    I suppose that I should also add that I realize that this is not always the case in sexual assault cases.

  • Frank411

    How come WBUR never asks anybody concerned about civil liberties to join in these discussions?

    A representative of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) would have been provided important information missing in the conversation.

    Below is the link to letter sent by FIRE to the White House Task Force, which is so eager to completely eliminate any semblance of due process of law in the quest for the votes of single women in November. This is fear-mongering and rights-trampling at a scale not seen since the days of Joe McCarthy.

    Already completely innocent men, demonstrably innocent men, are being deprived of access to higher education. Look at the Caleb Warner case at the University of North Dakota.

    https://www.thefire.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/FIREs-Comment-to-White-House-Task-Force-FEBRUARY-28-2014-.pdf

    • AliceOtter33

      Wrongful rape conviction is not the topic of today’s discussion. Why not put your topic request in the suggestion box?

      • Frank411

        The White House Task Force seeks to create a system where accusation is sufficient to expel.

        • Liz Malone Gerron

          I agree with Frank. The issue of false accusation is very real and must be addressed in University policies. Read some university policies — they are incredibly gender biased.

    • Will

      Everyday FIRE gives me more reason to like them.

  • Danny

    Also, I don’t know that it is appropriate for Dartmouth to automatically report sexual assault crimes. That is a decision for the survivor alone to make. The university should be there and willing to aid if and when she/he is ready to go to the police.

  • Alchemical Reaction

    Being a rape victim is NOT the fault of any woman, but ensuring it never happens is EVERY WOMAN’S responsibility.

    What the white house has done is make the situation worse, not better, for women!!!

    By attempting to use peer pressure in a positive way by pressuring men to be allies and outspoken champions of social change, it has the opposite effect.

    When men do this, their motives are suspect. Is it not chauvinistic to step in and attempt to be the “hero”??? To make oneself look desirable to women?

    Could anything be more disrespectful to women than assuming they can’t handle this themselves, that they need men to do it for them?

    In addition, “positive” peer pressure sidesteps true personal growth by substituting group conformity as a proxy. All this does is cause the sociopaths to behave in public, and as soon as no one is looking they lash out in resentment. This kind of peer pressure only works when peers are present.
    The moment there are no peers around, the offenders “act out”. Peer pressure creates a false group conformity proxy to take the place of inner personal growth. Therefore, this kind of social change only works in the realm of public society. When no one is looking it’s a whole other story.

    Peer pressure has absolutely no effect on personal morality, only behaviors that are monitored by peers.

    Let women solve their own problems, rather than making the situation worse! Women have, for too long, tried to have it both ways. They want equal rights without equal responsibilities. The other option is, for women to give men the respect they deserve for being the protectors and providing security in this society. You can’t have it both ways ladies.

    The problem is, predators perceive this as women being weak, NEEDING a “protector”. Therein lies the problem.

    The reason sociopathic men prey on women more than men, is men are not seen as easy targets. I’m talking about how the mind of a predator sees the situation.

    If you want to solve this once and for all, this is how you do it.

    Women must stand up for THEMSELVES and NEVER allow men to do it for them. THAT is the only message that will get through to the predators.

    You think true predators care one iota about the oppression “issue”???

    Think about it.

    Just because you WANT or THINK things should be a certain way, doesn’t change the instincts of a lion. In order to modify the lion’s behavior, you have to understand the lion and change your behavior accordingly.

    The only thing that will ever impact this situation is women standing up for themselves! Period.

    Predators interpret women having “allies” as a sign of weakness. Whether its true or not doesn’t matter. it’s how it is seen in the mind of a predator.

    Is it unfortunate and tragic that women have to deal with this?
    Sure. But reality won’t change just because YOU don’t like the way it is.

    Again, no amount of social change will impact the inner morality of a sexist sociopath. If anything, it will cause resentment and more violence.

    • Danny

      I personally think sexual predators are more like hyenas than lions. They prey on those that appear “weak” like a hyena does.

      The person standing up for someone in distress doesn’t have to be a man. A woman can just as easily stand up for someone as a man.

      We, as a society, have a responsibility to teach our young men and women how to set firm boundaries. How to firmly give or deny consent and accept the wishes of others.

      • Alchemical Reaction

        A well-reasoned argument, Pinedo.

      • Alchemical Reaction

        Use whatever metaphor you want.

        • Danny

          Well lions a majestic and powerful while hyenas are lowly and impotent. Therefore, sexual predators are more like hyenas than lions.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Kind of depends on your point of view… There are tribes who revere hyenas and see lions as pests…

          • Danny

            Really? Name one tribe still in existence that revere hyenas and think that lions are pest.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            The Maasai of Kenya.

            But an individual may also have this aesthetic preference, just like wolves on a T-shirt, or someone having an “ant” as a spirit totem.

          • Danny

            They don’t “revere hyenas” or think that lions are pests. As a matter of fact, the men used to kill a lion in order to gain the right to marry.

            Where did you get this from?

          • Danny

            Stop being a troll. Of course some individual somewhere on this earth may agree with you. The vast majority of people do not share your view point.

  • cherhoyt

    Preventing rape starts in the home when children are small. Both boys and girls need to be taught to respect themselves, to ask for adult help if someone bullies them, and not to use aggression to get what they want. In pubescence and adolescence both boys and girls need to have (age-appropriate) ongoing discussions with parents and other adults about sex and the difference between consensual sex and non-consensual, forced or aggressive sex – aka rape. And both genders need to know the dangers of alcohol and drugs in lowering inhibitions and leading to bad decisions — or in the case of someone too drunk to consent, the inability to make a decision. And that goes for boys as well as girls. Surely there have been many young men who were so drunk they didn’t remember the next morning that they had forced or coerced a young woman to have sex – and who never would have done such a thing if they were sober, and who find rape abhorrent and can hardly believe they did what they are accused of doing. The raging hormones of college-age students make prudent decision-making difficult enough, but alcohol and drugs make it even harder. One thing colleges could do to prevent rape on is to be very strict about alcohol use on campus. Another is to do what they are beginning to do – to have ongoing public discussions about the problem of rape, and to deal fairly with both the accuser and the accused. And as a society we should educate both male and female young people about the general health risks of getting blotto drunk or wiped out on drugs. Besides lowering inhibition and erasing executive function in the moment, too much of it is bad for the liver, brain, other organs, and skin over the course of time — and addiction, for those who are predisposed to it, is a curse. We need a public health/public education campaign against rape, with a sub-campaign against an anything-goes culture of drinking and drugging, perhaps modeled on the widespread “Don’t drink and drive” or “Friends don’t let friends drive drunk” campaign, which, along with stricter laws, led to a huge reduction in accidents and deaths from drunk driving since the 1970s.

  • Alchemical Reaction

    A “conscious”? LOL… or a “conscience”?

  • Alchemical Reaction

    With all the various kinds of bacteria and other pathogens found in the female reproductive orifice, there is an argument to be made that sex drive and lust ARE pathological.

    Why would you want to have sex with someone without first knowing her personal hygiene habits and her STD test results.

    If it is hormones, and the young men are powerless against it, then it really is not their fault.

    Secondly, a distinction ought to be made between the guys who just want to get laid, and have no intention of harming the girl (drunken misunderstandings), and those who seek power and rape is their actual intent.

    • hennorama

      Wow. Just WOW.

      • brettearle

        No kiddin’.

      • Alchemical Reaction

        Indeed.

    • brettearle

      Aside from your remarkably jaded and cynical view, you have COMPLETELY ignored the STDs of Men.

      Thumbs Down. Way Down.

      • Alchemical Reaction

        You are making a few assumptions, rather than responding to the specifics of what I said, or even asking for clarification.

        Thus, you are contributing nothing to the discussion.

        No, I was speaking specifically from the point of view of men.

        My argument did not include the point of view of women, because I am not female. Out of respect, I don’t speak for women.

        Of course, I encourage women to educate and protect themselves, as well.

        • brettearle

          Many topics, about men and women, can be discussed by both Genders.

          This is certainly one of those topics.

          If you offer a foolish disclaimer–that you quote `don’t speak for women’ when you actually talk about their private hygiene
          –such a comment, by you, is hypocritical.

          You are actually also implying that women can’t comment, on your comments–about hormones and control of men’s behavior by men–when these women are the very victims of these problems and issues.

          You can’t have it both ways.

          Do you have any idea, of what you are saying?

          • Alchemical Reaction

            I never said they couldn’t be discussed by both genders. I said, “out of respect, I don’t speak FOR women.” I let them speak for themselves. Meaning, I let them state their own opinions about things. The comment about hygiene was a fact based one, and then a statement of my opinion from the point of view of a man. I am glad to hear anything women would like to share.
            I have an extremely high mental acuity and am very precise about my choice of words.

            Do you have any idea what you are babbling about? You seem to be arguing with yourself.

            I always find it amusing when people get so easily offended, because of their own assumptions.

            Are you developmentally disabled?

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Just admit you have nothing of substance to contribute and go argue with someone you can compete with. I am way out of your league.

          • brettearle

            The fact that you have to proclaim it, suggests otherwise.

            Also:

            I’m thoroughly elated that I’m not in your league. Your league is called the Minor League.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            LOL

          • brettearle

            Again, a non-retort, if only hackneyed…

          • Alchemical Reaction

            LOL

          • brettearle

            Again………………hackneyed

          • Alchemical Reaction

            LOL.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Offensive, that is an interesting word.

            Offensive implies someone is offended… Thus, a comment can’t be “offensive” intrinsically. It can only be offensive if someone finds it offensive.

            Which then begs the question WHY they found it offensive.

            In these sorts of discussions, the intention of the statement never seems to matter to people like you. You only care that you “found it” offensive.

            That kind of insensitivity is not going to go very far toward people like me walking on eggshells.

            I state my mind, truthfully, with absolutely no consideration for who it may offend. Because I understand group dynamics. And I care about the community. if all voices are not included, there is no community, only a pseudo community.

            You see, those with a chip on their shoulder are the problem, those who wield their wounds as weapons, those who can’t handle honesty.

            All it does is make me ever more certain of how important my voice actually is.

          • brettearle

            He who is self-righteous shall be Smited by it.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Look in the mirror.

          • brettearle

            Thank God, I didn’t see you when I did.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Why would you see me? Were you expecting to?

            Are you having hallucinations?

            if so, seek help.

          • brettearle

            Poor quality retort.

            You need a remedial course.

            I see that clearly, now.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Hey, whatever makes you feel better, Brett. Anytime you would like to debate about any topic, get educated, then if I feel like it, maybe I will make myself available.

          • brettearle

            You don’t debate. You wail.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Actually this is technically a debate. Since “wail” is a term referring to an auditory phenomenon resulting from the audible lamentations of a human being, and we’re typing, not using voice chat, further, since I feel absolutely no duress whatsoever in this exchange, your characterization would seem inaccurate.

            However, as we see here in the definition of wail, to utter a prolonged, inarticulate, mournful cry, usually high-pitched or clear-sounding, as in grief orsuffering: to wail with pain.

            2.

            to make mournful sounds, as music or the wind.

            3.

            to lament or mourn bitterly.

            4.

            Jazz. to perform exceptionally well.

            5.

            Slang. to express emotion musically or verbally in an exciting, satisfying way.

            I DO feel a sense of solidarity for the plight of women, and am saddened by the fact that they would rather complain than handle this situation themselves, I guess wail could be a rather poetic way of describing my grief.

            Am curious what you are trying to achieve? Don’t you have anything better to do with your time than try to annoy me?

            LOL

          • brettearle

            Ladies and Gentlemen….

            Looka’ Here.

            Because of this guy’s Ego Bruise, he’s spent the LAST 7 MINUTES on GOOGLE.

            Let’s give this gentlemen a round of applause!

            You have offended women. I therefore am taking up their cause.

            It doesn’t MATTER, the difference between Connotation and Denotation.

            What matters is HOW your comments are going to be taken and perceived–without a considerate explanation–to those who might otherwise be fooled.

            That’s WHY you’re being ignored.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            What are you talking about? How much more succinct could I be? The comments stand on their own. And you are again making huge assumptions about why women may or may not be choosing to respond to something I wrote. Those assumptions are much more disrespectful than anything I have said in this thread.

            You need to be educated about how to respect women!

            It took me exactly four minutes to go to dictionary.com, copy the definition, and write and post my comment. Google never entered into it!

            You are pathetic and not worth any more of my time.

          • brettearle

            You are parsing–about parsing words– because of your intrinsic cynicism.

            It is a subtle manipulation–but a manipulation, nevertheless.

            You can’t get away with it.

            Your comments about women are offensive.

    • Sy2502

      So your argument is “female parts are icky”?

      • Alchemical Reaction

        Yes! lol.

        • Sy2502

          You are weird.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            No, I am exceptional. It’s not difficult to confuse the two.

  • Coastghost

    The account of human animality given us by our evolutionary and biological sciences seems to be on trial here.
    (Manifestly, the traditional Judeo-Christian account of human animality is not in question, since so few today impute any credence to it.)
    Our traditional scientific accounts of anthropology are on trial, though: our sexual behaviors, riotously instinctual for us as for all other species availing themselves of sexual reproduction, increasingly are being submitted to rational categories (e.g., scientific descriptions and clinical medical accounts of human sexuality) and rational structures (e.g., the contemporary pornography industry, jurisprudence governing human sexual relations) to the point where sexual reproduction itself is occurring without any human agency other than generation of sperm and egg.
    What does “anthropological realism” consist of in today’s synthetic environment?
    By imposing rational distinctions and techniques on our species in order to distinguish it from all other animal species on the planet is a curious accomplishment all by itself.
    This “mentalization” of somatic performance, this “evaporation of the somatic”, is a curious feature of modernity.

    • Alchemical Reaction

      Okay, but am still curious about your moral stance?

      • Coastghost

        I am still curious about my moral stance. When not a moral skeptic, I’m a practicing amoralist, tiring of amoralism, I’m a part-time Machiavellian. Definitely NOT a Kantian: death to categorical imperatives and deontological ethics. Anti-modern and anachronistic.

        • jefe68

          In other words, a misanthrope.

          • Coastghost

            Kant may well have believed that he was the world’s only philanthropist, but that would be yet another Kantian claim to reject.

  • brettearle

    The University’s reactions and non-intervention are deplorable here.

    They should be outed.

    Sorry that this happened to you and your daughter.

    Background checks, however, that you suggest, might be too much of an excessive monitoring system, in my view.

    Dangers exist everywhere. I think we have to weigh protection vs privacy.

    However, in these matters, above, your suggestions might be reasonable, despite my misgivings..

    It would simply be hard for me to see such a policy implemented in such a widespread way.

    We have so much 1984-stuff going on.

    • kaaramel

      I think background checks are a good idea. I have to get them every time I start a new job or a new voluntary position. It seems reasonable to me that college students should be able to now that the person sleeping next to them has been thoroughly checked out.

      • brettearle

        In general, I am not in favor of expanding background checks, increasingly, in more aspects of life, than we already find such monitoring.

        It is absolutely unacceptable to me, that we are being watched, for example, with cameras–everywhere, these days.

        If you increase background checks, you might as well admit–what you probably don’t want to admit, right now:

        That it is simply NOT an exaggeration that–even right now–we are living in a POLICE state. .

  • JS

    So, because Beyonce did a “performance”, men couldn’t help themselves and had to rape?

  • Sy2502

    How about instead of the White House doing something about it, the parents start doing something about how they educate their children, so they are not raising a rapist?

    • hennorama

      Sy2502 — that idea is all well and good, for the future, but does nothing whatsoever to address the cohort of students who are beyond parental influence right now.

      Should nothing be done in the meantime?

      • Sy2502

        Of course we should do something in the meantime, but moral education at home is the foremost problem here, and it gets very little attention in my opinion.

        • hennorama

          Sy2502 — thank you for your response.

          So, in your view, “we” should exclude White House involvement?

          • Sy2502

            I find it interesting how you seem to be able to only see this as a “either/or”. Do you actually believe there’s one and only one way to deal with this, and that doing something on one front automatically negates doing anything on any other front? Because that’s a rather simplistic, not to mention deeply odd, way of thinking.

          • hennorama

            Sy2502 — TY again for your response.

            Did I misinterpret your original post somehow? You wrote “instead of the White House doing something about it …,” did you not? Please explain what you meant, as I inferred that phrasing would exclude White House involvement.

          • Sy2502

            Sexual assault is a crime, we already have laws for it. We only need law enforcement to work on it. We don’t need the White House because we already have everything we need in place, we just need the relevant people to do their job.

          • hennorama

            Sy2502 –thank you for your response.

            You began with writing “instead of the White House doing something about it, the parents [should] start doing something about how they educate their children.” When it was pointed out that your idea would only affect the future, you wrote “Of course we should do something in the meantime…”

            Is it your idea that the “something in the meantime” is that “We only need law enforcement to work on it”? As in, “those lazy cops aren’t doing enough”?

            Which definition of “only” do you mean here?

            –excluding all others (i.e., “We need law enforcement, excluding all others, to work on it…”)

            –nothing more than (i.e., “We need nothing more than for law enforcement to work on it…”)

            or some other definition?

            You comments seem all over the map, other than your desire that the White House do nothing.

            Please explain, as I’m trying to understand.

          • kaaramel

            “I find it interesting how you seem to be able to only see this as a
            “either/or”. Do you actually believe there’s one and only one way to
            deal with this, and that doing something on one front automatically
            negates doing anything on any other front? Because that’s a rather
            simplistic, not to mention deeply odd, way of thinking.”

            You were accused of doing what the other responder was very much guilty of doing. Kudos to you for being able to patiently and respectfully respond to this poster and the other who was not able to follow your simple logic.

            To get on topic, I think that the police, parents and the White House and everyone else should do something about sexual assault. I think it’s a very big deal and everyone should get involved. We need a multi-pronged approach with multiple players. Self-defense, education, all of that. As a young woman with a brother, sister, uncles, aunties, mother, father and nieces and nephews, also think accusations are thoroughly investigated and all parties should be treated fairly. We are able to do this.

          • hennorama

            kaaramel — thank you for your response, and for your very kind words.

            I am often surprised by reactions to my questioning. Some express the idea that I am assigning “homework,” or playing some sort of game, and/or that if my questions go unanswered that I claim some sort of “victory.” This is not the case. As stated, I’m trying to understand the comments, and to promote mutual understanding. At times, written comments alone fail to convey the full meaning intended by the writer, and feedback from the reader can help flesh out a more complete meaning. The various possible meanings of the word “only,” as used above, are but one example.

            Regarding your comments, I would avoid the words “accuse” and “guilty,” as they tend to be off-putting. Part of your observations pointed to “being able to patiently and respectfully respond,” and part of being respectful is to consider how one’s words might be received.

            (And while is is generally my intent to be both patient and respectful, I sometimes fail quite spectacularly.)

            Returning to your points about the topic at hand: I agree. I see no downside to either increased attention to the issue, or increased involvement from the President on down, and/or from the bottom up. There are legitimate concerns expressed about ambiguity of consent in situations involving intoxicants, and false accusations, but these are not reasons for inaction.

            Thank you again for your very kind words.

          • Sy2502

            I don’t know how more clearly I can say it.
            - We already have plenty of laws in place to punish sexual assault. Therefore we don’t need new ones.
            - This is not a White House concern. It’s a local concern of parents of the students who don’t want to see their daughters assaulted, of the college that needs to work on its security, of the local law enforcement that needs to catch and put away the criminals so they don’t assault anyone else, and of local concerned taxpayers whose taxes go to these colleges and who should be involved in what happens in their community.
            - Laws that punish criminals, as we all know, don’t automatically stop all crime. There are still people who break the law. While we work at one end to catch and punish them, we need to work even harder at preventing it from happening This means parents need to stop raising rapists. What kind of parents does such a lousy job that their kid thinks sexual assault is ok? Something is very wrong here.

          • hennorama

            Sy2502 – thank you again for taking the time to respond.

            If I may, this is my summary interpretation of your views:

            1. White House involvement, and by extension, increased public attention and awareness, and the significant resources of the Federal government, are not needed, because Protect[ing] Students From Sexual Assault is a purely “local concern of parents … the college … local law enforcement … and of local concerned taxpayers…”

            A sort of “Don’t worry Mr. President, we’ve got this” idea, colloquially.

            2. Nothing is needed on the legislative front.

            3. Local law enforcement needs to do a better job.

            4. Parents need to do a better job, specifically they should “start doing something about how they educate their children, so they are not raising a rapist,” and/or a “kid [who] thinks sexual assault is ok.”

            5. Colleges need to do a better job, and to improve security.

            6. Local “concerned taxpayers whose taxes go to these colleges …should be [much more] involved in what happens in their community.”

            Please correct any misinterpretations.

            If the above is accurate, that’s fair enough.

            Why one might reject additional pubic attention and awareness, and additional resources, is an unanswered question. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, of course.

            I would point out some errors, contradictions, and unaddressed issues of concern, but suspect further engagement would not yield any additional meeting of the minds. Again, not that there’s anything wrong with that, of course.

            Thank you again for your response.

            PS: If you’re interested, here’s a link to “The First Report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students From Sexual Assault”:
            http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/report_0.pdf

            And you can read the “FACT SHEET: Not Alone – Protecting Students from Sexual Assault” here:
            http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/04/29/fact-sheet-not-alone-protecting-students-sexual-assault

          • Sy2502

            I don’t know why you felt the need to “interpret” my post since it was as clear as can be. Especially since this runs a very high risk of twisting one’s words or adding what one never actually said. So if you don’t mind, we’ll stick to what I actually said rather than your “interpretation”.
            The job of the Federal Government is specified in the Constitution, Article I, Sec. 8; Articles II-V; Amendments XIII-XVI, XIX-XX, XXIII-XXVI. As you can see, preventing assault in colleges is not one of them, in fact it is a matter for the states (criminal law) and the local authorities (enforcing those laws). The laws are already in place, but even if we needed new laws, this would be, once again, a job for the State Legislature. Moreover many of these universities are STATE universities, which should be a dead giveaway on who should do the work here. Considering that once a sex offender, one is registered for life, and subjected to many restrictions even after paying one’s dues in jail, yes I would say the laws are already there and are stiff enough. If criminals already disregard current laws, I fail to see why they should suddenly start obeying new ones on top of the old ones.
            Public attention and awareness is welcome as should have been obvious by my call for greater community involvement.

            I don’t feel you have refuted a single point I made, should I assume you have no counterarguments?

          • hennorama

            Sy2502 –TY again for you response.

            1. Had I intended to refute rather than to understand your views, such intent would be readily apparent.

            2. As I have been trying to undestand your views, I have been employing reflective communication techniques (myriad sources are available, should you be unfamiliar with the term).

            3. As stated previously, I suspect further engagement would not yield any additional meeting of the minds.

            TY again for your response.

          • Sy2502

            As I said, “interpreting” somebody’s views when they are quite plain and clear only runs the risk of twisting what one said. There’s a place and time for reflective communication techniques.
            Thank you for contributing absolutely nothing to the conversation though. I hope it was worth your time.

      • Alchemical Reaction

        Sy2502 is right. Sad to say, I don’t think efforts made in the meantime will be impactful. Those students have already chosen the paths they are on, both victims and perpetrators.

        But educating the next generation, THAT can have a real impact.

        • hennorama

          Alchemical Reaction — thank you for your response.

          So, amongst this cohort who are beyond parental influence right now, some are future victims, who “have already chosen the paths they are on?” As in, they have chosen to be victims in the future, and no “efforts made in the meantime” might prevent them from becoming victims?

          And in a similar way, those in this cohort who might in the future be perpetrators, no “efforts made in the meantime will be impactful,” so no such efforts should be made?

          • Alchemical Reaction

            I never said no such efforts should be made. Of course, efforts should be made. I just doubt they will be impactful.

            And yes, I believe for large part, they HAVE chosen their paths, or you could say they have been socialized into their roles.

            And those roles include victim and perpetrator. I think that is pretty obvious, unfortunately, because of society.

            The overwhelming pandemic of narcissism is really the culprit.

            It is never a woman’s fault. But in order to stop the cycle, women are going to have to take responsibility. If men take responsibility and peer pressure other men, that will cause sociopaths to act out in vengeful ways.

            Women need to toughen up and not be easy targets. THAT is the effort that could make a difference in the “meantime”. And children need to be educated differently.

          • hennorama

            Alchemical Reaction — TY again for your response.

            Time constraints allow no reply from me at present.

      • Coastghost

        The cohort of students immediately beyond parental influence is that of our beloved Millennials. Whoever’d’ve thought that Millennials could become such thugs and ruffians?
        What a lousy job their lousy Boomer parents did raising them, on today’s testimony.

        • Coastghost

          Oh good! the down vote has been restored, at least for my offending posts.

  • Sy2502

    I completely agree with you, that while us women try to get something done, we still should be prepared for the worst case scenario. I have noticed among my personal circle of female friends that they tend to have an attitude of bad things happening to other people, and if they are good girls and bother nobody, nothing bad will ever happen to them. When I mention I carry pepper spray in my bag, they laugh at me, they tell me I exaggerate, I am paranoid, etc. Yet statistics say a large number of women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime. So there’s a clear disconnect between perception and reality.
    Another factor to keep in mind is that many of these assaults happen when the victim is intoxicated, and therefore not capable of self defense.

    • Alchemical Reaction

      Your last point is a strong argument for only drinking around people you trust.

      • Sy2502

        No, it’s a strong point for getting wasted only with people you trust. And for exercising some judgment.

        • Alchemical Reaction

          No, it’s a strong argument for only drinking around people you trust.

          • Sy2502

            You should speak for yourself. Some of us can hold their liquor well, and can pace ourselves not to get so intoxicated we are incapacitated. If you can’t do that, then you definitely shouldn’t drink around people you don’t trust.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            What if someone puts something in your drink?

          • Sy2502

            Unless you are in a safe environment, you should never leave your drink unattended, pretty much everybody knows that.

  • Alchemical Reaction

    I’m surprised to hear this coming from a woman. I disagree. Rape is never the victim’s fault. But preventing rape is every woman’s responsibility. If a woman chooses to dress in a scantily clad or “vulgar” manner, then she ought to take extra safety precautions, knowing there are predators out there. Just my opinion.

  • hennorama

    judi kroeger — of course.

    After all, the reason that “many young women and girls … walking around scantly dressed with the top strap of their thong underwear showing,” and who are “going out at night and drinking at clubs or parties flirting with men” is that they expect unwanted sexual contact, sexual assault, rape, or worse.

    And of course, no one other than these “many young women and girls … walking around scantly dressed with the top strap of their thong underwear showing,” and who are “going out at night and drinking at clubs or parties flirting with men” have ever, or will ever be victims of unwanted sexual contact, sexual assault, rape, or worse.

    After all, we all know that not “walking around scantly dressed with the top strap of [our] thong underwear showing,” and not “going out at night and drinking at clubs or parties flirting with men” is an absolute protection against becoming a victim of unwanted sexual contact, sexual assault, rape, and worse.

    Of course.

  • Alchemical Reaction

    “The worst abuse of power is when a man raises his hand to hurt a woman.” Joe Biden

    Oh my god! The vice president is SO IGNORANT on this issue. Could he be any more misguided!?!

    This is an utter tragedy! A tragedy that this is the message he is sending out.

    He is PART OF THE PROBLEM. Thinking women aren’t tough enough to handle this themselves, or that they are less “powerful” than men?

    It’s outrageous!

    What a chauvinist!

    Women need to toughen up and NOT be easy targets. That is the solution!

    That is the ONLY thing that will work.

    Peer pressure is not an effective tactic in social justice! It never has been.

    • Will

      Not sure if you’re being sarcastic but any scenario that warrants a decent person engaging in physical violence is a fight or flight response scenario that should ignore all variables- .age, gender, race, etc.

      • Alchemical Reaction

        Not sure if you’re being sarcastic, either.

  • Alchemical Reaction

    YES!!! OMG YES!

    Thank You! Finally!

  • Alchemical Reaction

    The only solution is self-defense training for women, and only drinking around people you trust. Period. The rest of this is fluff.

  • Regular_Listener

    I have spent a lot of time on college campuses, including one that has been a center for the kind of activity discussed on the program – and I am convinced that this supposed problem of widespread sexual assaults taking place on college campuses is for the most part a fiction. That is not to say that there have not been some real victims and real harm done. But the actual numbers of legitimate cases are extremely low, nowhere near the 1 in 5 figure that has been getting tossed around lately. During the program, Tom brought that up, but none of the guests (all women, none of them impartial) touched it. It is most likely that this is a self-reported figure, perhaps compiled by a biased researcher. To me this furor says more about contemporary politics and psychology than it does about university life.

    Who could be against such an effort, other than a rapist or abuser of some kind? Well, how about someone who wants to see things presented the way they actually are, and not in a hysterical and/or dishonest light? Thanks btw to the caller who brought up the issue of false accusations. This is an extremely serious problem in this type of situation. This was another important aspect of the issue that none of the guests wanted to go near. Tom should have pressed them on it.

    I would like to know in what percentage of these kinds of cases the accuser ends up revealed as a liar and/or suffering from some emotional problems. I bet it is pretty darn high. Like the caller, I too was once falsely accused of abusive behavior (not sexual assault, fortunately), and I learned that, contrary to what some of the guests were asserting, the authorities always assume that a woman making a claim of victimhood is telling the truth, and that the matter is not always investigated in an intelligent manner. There needs to be serious penalties for people who come forward with false accusations. They too are abusers, and have a deep desire to cause harm and pain to others. Why are they being protected?

    Also, I wonder what Senator McCaskill was thinking when she admitted that a big part of the problem was convincing young women that they were victims even when they thought they weren’t, and that she thought back fondly to the days of segregated housing and no alcohol on campus. I used to think highly of this politician, but not any more.

    More needs to be done to include the views of men on this subject. I am disappointed that there seems to be no effort to do so, not by the White House, and not by the women on this broadcast.

    • OnPointComments

      Multiple sources report that the 1 in 5 statistic is greatly exaggerated. In the CDC’s survey, for example, a woman could list instances of consensual sex she had while intoxicated that she did not consider to be rape — that were in fact not rape — and the researchers would nonetheless classify her as a rape victim. Apparently “No means no,” unless it’s uttered by a woman who tells a researcher “No, I wasn’t raped.”

      When people resort to exaggeration and wild hyperbole when discussing sexual assault statistics, it may cause someone (including me) to ask: if you’re lying to me about the statistics, what else are you lying about? Those who cite bogus statistics damage their own credibility and the problem they are addressing.

    • ExcellentNews

      Damn right! Women must know their place, which is barefooted in the kitchen. Besides, college is no place for a woman. Any of them uppity ladies are asking for it, as you should know from your old days as a frat boy.

    • jefe68

      Let me guess, you’re male, about 45 to 53 give or take a few years.

  • ExcellentNews

    As someone with a daughter, I am 100% in support of the action plan. Thanks God we have a President who thinks about the lives of the 99%. Because all we hear from the conservative trolls is tax cuts for billionaire CEOs and bankers, Benghazi, and denial of climate change. What next will the party of Bush, Palin and Perry come up with? Tax cuts for gun-toting rapists? I would not be really surprised …

    • Markus6

      As someone with children of both genders, I hope they are treated fairly and legally and that the problems of their age are understood objectively and not with selective use of data to simplify a complex problem in order to further an agenda or sell a book.

      And as someone who leans conservative, I’d like to see billionaires pay more, Benghazi drop off the radar and climate change recognized as real and man made. But mostly, I’d like to see people somehow get beyond their simplistic notions of what the other side thinks.

      • ExcellentNews

        Agreed. But the “other side” speaks for itself. Just listen to the primary “debates” or to “leaders” like Sarah Palin or Rick Perry. It is hard for us to come with more inane, disconnected ideas than what they voice themselves.

    • twenty_niner

      “Thanks God we have a President who thinks about the lives of the 99%.”

      Yes, all praise to Dear Leader. Would you care to join me in a small tribute? I’m staring at Dear Leader’s picture on the wall. He has a halo. Please, let’s sing together:

      Did you ever know that you’re my hero?
      You’re everything I wish I could be.
      I could fly higher than an eagle,
      ’cause you are the wind beneath my wings.

      Did I ever tell you you’re my hero?
      You’re everything, everything I wish I could be.
      Oh, and I, I could fly higher than an eagle,
      ’cause you are the wind beneath my wings,
      ’cause you are the wind beneath my wings.

      Oh, the wind beneath my wings.
      You, you, you, you are the wind beneath my wings.
      Fly, fly, fly away. You let me fly so high.
      Oh, you, you, you, the wind beneath my wings.
      Oh, you, you, you, the wind beneath my wings.

      Fly, fly, fly high against the sky,
      so high I almost touch the sky.
      Thank you, thank you,
      thank God for you, the wind beneath my wings.

      • ExcellentNews

        LOL… dude, I will have some of what you are SMOKING. Oh wait – is that you, Mr. Putin???

    • 228929292AABBB

      I’m not trying to be a downer, but it surprises me that people still get excited when President Obama says he’s going to do something, or address a wrong. This guy ran on a bunch of promises like this six years ago and is well into his second extension of the Bush presidency. Why, oh why oh why would you believe Barack Obama when he says he’s going to fight sexual assault (close Guantanamo, increase the use of alternative energy, stop adding to the nation’s debt, put a halt to the arrests without due process, put ‘everything he has’ into gun control, protect the environment, hold wall street bankers accountable……) Now we have the news the ‘dream act’ guy has deported more immigrants than any President before him and at a faster pace. The greatest asset a politician has in America is that if people are convinced to vote for him once they will NEVER admit they were wrong, so it’s a job for life. We all had high hopes for Barack Obama. Remember what the lady told Michael Douglas in ‘the game’? Wake up – It’s a con.

      • Guest

        What surprises me is that, he seems to do some good policy, and then backpedal or institute horrendous policy. There seems to be a pre-ordained plan of some kind that is only marginally affected by voters. Now, congress has blocked a lot of his efforts. But still.

  • kaaramel

    As a woman, I think Mr. Mahma is saying that because different people have different morals (or sometimes none), it is expedient for women to expect that some unreasonable immoral man (who may consider himself to be reasonable) to take advantage of her if he is able to. Thus it would be wise for her to avoid such social situations if at all possible. I’ve seen many of these types of men and in some societies and situations it’s impossible to avoid them, but if we can I think that we should. As Mr. Mahma said (paraphrase) welcome to the real world where people have their own agenda.

  • DougGiebel

    I’m interested in learning about the Dartmouth situation you mention. dougcatz at itstriangle dot com

  • jacbouvier

    I am seriously annoyed that Dartmouth College is taken as the “poster child” for this generation-wide problem. As you MUST know, many other colleges and universities have similar problems.

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=308621629

    So does the military
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/margaret-mclean/rape-in-the-military-its-_b_4985024.html

    In fact I would bet that most institutions that put teen- and twenty-something men and women together without supervision have this problem.

    So why Dartmouth and not Yale, Penn, Princeton or Ohio State, or UC Berkeley? Why not the Air Force Academy or Michigan? All have sexual abuse cases recent or ongoing.

    I can’t speak for the others, but Dartmouth is taking steps to address its problems. In this context it is more than a little unfair to Dartmouth to be singled out.

  • bobbyriled

    I know I’m late but I heard the podcast and have read through the comments and I still have the question: What is rape?

    There is the stalker with a knife or a gun who pulls a jogger into the bushes.
    There is the male participant in a drunken tryst of which the Mean Girl must absolve herself.

    And all the scenarios in between.

    • CAYdenberg

      Rape is sexual intercourse without legal consent. Educate yourself.

      • Alchemical Reaction

        LOL. so, basically, without a signed contract! LOL

        • Alex Goldstein

          While it’s interesting that you think the concept of consent is hilarious, it’s really not that hard. If you’ve personally been having trouble with it, maybe alert your local police precinct?

          • Alchemical Reaction

            Sorry for the confusion. I never meant to imply that consent is hilarious. I only meant to imply the way society constitutes consent is hilarious.

            Rape DOES happen and it IS tragic and horrible. But there are just as many situations where consent was given, and then, afterwards, one party attempts to remove the consent they gave, after the fact, or to claim it was never given in the first place, usually when they find out their partner didn’t hold the act in the same light or regard as they did, or if they were even slightly intoxicated, and don’t agree with the decisions THEY made when they were intoxicated.

            Thus, a signed contract is really the only proof of consent. Even then, one party can claim it was signed under duress.
            Therefore, there really is no way to prove a rape WASN’T committed.

            Go ahead and educate yourself. I’m sure they have classes at your local police precinct.

          • Alchemical Reaction

            The accusation of rape has far reaching implications on the life of the accused, even if they are innocent.

            How many young women have given consent, only to regret their decision the next day and claim they never gave consent?

  • Will

    Why would a school be expected to handle a felony in the first place? We wouldn’t have schools handle murders? Why would schools do more than call the cops?

  • CAYdenberg

    Holy crapamola, WHAT? Men aren’t grizzly bears. They are responsible for their actions. Common-sense methods to protect oneself are one thing, but you’re attaching a level of moralizing to it that’s really troubling, and is a contributor to the messed up attitudes that underlie rape culture in the first place.

  • grandma432

    This is so sad the VAWA has been getting funding for over 10 years to teach the officers etc for this problem and now we are going to appoint someone else to do it. The WCADA has been getting funds for 30 years and has not addressed this with the Counties and College when that is where their earmark money was for. The system has dropped the ball on this and now expects someone else to do it. Just wrong.

  • Alchemical Reaction

    I find it utterly banal that women don’t band together and develop a self-defense strategy, if for no other reason than dignity, rather than letting men “defend” them…

    To me, it’s the height of chauvinism to view women as weak, or to think they aren’t strong enough to handle this themselves.

    There are numerous martial arts designed to leverage size and weight or strike vital areas.

    Not to mention when you say things like what the vice president said, you reinforce the image of women as “prey”.

    Comments like those the vice president made, make me physically sick to my stomach. And I voted for Obama.

    AND, the rate of men who are sexually assaulted is almost as high as the rate of assaults on women.

    The “social change” aspect of this issue is some kind of deviant power play in itself.

    And the final straw, the fact that peer pressure was never proven to be an effective tactic in social justice.

    Peer pressure side steps personal growth by substituting a proxy of group conformity.

    Deviants will “behave” when peers are around, but as soon as no peers are present, they will “act out” possibly in violent and explosive ways, out of resentment over the peer pressure they were subjected to.

    Peer pressure, as a tool in social justice, doesn’t work!

  • Alchemical Reaction

    Hey kids, if you want to have sex, have the presence of mind to make signing a contract a form of foreplay.

ONPOINT
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Aug 1, 2014
A close up of newspaper front pages focusing on the Ebola outbreak, including a newspaper, left, reading 'Burn all bodies' in the city of Monrovia, Liberia, Thursday, July 31, 2014. The worst recorded Ebola outbreak in history surpassed 700 deaths in West Africa. (AP)

Israel-Gaza conflict heats up. The House votes to sue Obama. Ebola spreads in Africa. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Aug 1, 2014
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In this Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2013 file photo, Luis Mendez, 23, left, and Maurice Mike, 23, wait in line at a job fair held by the Miami Marlins, at Marlins Park in Miami. Increasingly, potential employers are turning to digital content as a way to judge job-seekers before they even apply. (AP)

They see you when you’re sleeping. They know when you’re awake. Employers move to digital assessment in hiring, firing and promotion. We’ll check in.

 
Aug 1, 2014
A close up of newspaper front pages focusing on the Ebola outbreak, including a newspaper, left, reading 'Burn all bodies' in the city of Monrovia, Liberia, Thursday, July 31, 2014. The worst recorded Ebola outbreak in history surpassed 700 deaths in West Africa. (AP)

Israel-Gaza conflict heats up. The House votes to sue Obama. Ebola spreads in Africa. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

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