America Hates Women and Other Reasons Rapists Go Free

Women walk the world with the knowledge that rapists rights matter far more than ours.

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Photo by Michelle Ding on Unsplash

Guess what came across my Facebook feed today? That’s right! Another story about how American hates women. I can’t tell you how fantastic it is to live in a country that has so little regard for my right not to be sexually assaulted or harassed. It’s really the bees knees.

This week, our country’s lack of give-a-shit for rape victims was exemplified by the case of William Alexander, a former Texas police officer found guilty of raping a woman he encountered during the course of his duties investigating a domestic violence call. Since it’s an option in Texas, he chose to have his sentence decided by a jury instead of a judge and they opted to give him some probation.

Another day, another story of a judge and jury feeling sorry for someone who’s sexually assaulted a woman.

Why? Because he’s a cop! And if he went to prison, he’d be killed! Well, maybe he should have thought about that before raping someone? Also, are we really admitting here that our prison system is so bad that it’s a foregone conclusion someone will get murdered there and we can’t prevent it? That seems like a whole other industrial-sized can of worms we should probably be addressing.

Another day, another story of a judge and jury feeling sorry for someone who’s sexually assaulted a woman. Oh! Poor little rapist! Should we really ruin his life because he made one mistake?! You might not know this, but there are lots of reasons that we don’t put actual sexual predators and criminals behind bars.

He comes from a good family.

I mean, honestly, this is obviously a really good reason to just forget that someone did some top notch life-altering crime, right? Not only did this stellar teen dude rape a classmate, he recorded it and sent it around to all their classmates! Har har, when your first time having sex is rape! So funny! Or as the judge said “just a 16-year-old kid saying stupid crap to his friends.” What a little rascal!

Also said the Reprehensible Human Being (RHB)of a judge, James Troiano:

“He is clearly a candidate for not just college but probably for a good college,” Troiano reportedly said. According to the Times, Troiano also noted that prosecutors “should have explained to the girl and her family that pressing charges would destroy the boy’s life.”

Surely, the girl he raped probably didn’t even have a family, right? And it’s not like there is a whole group of people now dealing with the fallout of sexual assault. No rifts will be caused by this horrific crime, because it was just boys being boys, right?!

I mean, she might have been a candidate for college too, and maybe she still will. She may also have an extraordinarily hard time coping with the fact that the world has so brazenly demonstrated what it values: boys.

He is “doing well in school.”

Ohhhhhh, well in that case! Obviously, we should let him get back to that! Sometimes, really successful boys and men are just overwhelmed by life to the point that they just gotta do something bad. Frida Garza explains:

Fedorchuk has compared Shrivastava to Bill Cosby and Tiger Woods — I guess, intending to making the case that successful men operate under an amount of pressure, which sometimes leads them to do bad things.

Lawyers in one case argued the “exemplary” life their rapist client led was so difficult he couldn’t be blamed for finding a little bit of release when the opportunity presented itself. Well, of course! I mean, think about it. If you are super stressed out by your normal, everyday responsibilities, you can’t possibly be expected to like follow the law or have morals, right?

Like, just because she might have to drop out of school or start failing classes because she has trauma and all that, he shouldn’t have to miss out on his education, right?

He gave in to temptation.

Sometimes, RHBs aren’t judges! Sometimes, they’re also lawyers. Imagine that! In one exotic Canadian case, a real RHB of a lawyer said:

Shrivastava’s lawyer addressed Albert Justice Jolaine Antonio, who will rule on the length of Shrivastava’s sentence, and argued that his client fell victim to temptation, and should receive a lenient (per the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation):

Shrivastava’s actions were a case of “drunken stupidity,” argued [Dale] Fedorchuk, who said his client was “faced with an opportunity, tempted in that moment” and made “a stupid decision to cave to temptation.”

I mean, at least we can agree on one thing: these guys are stupid, and so are their lawyers. It’s stupid to say that an unconscious woman is “an opportunity.”

He only raped ONE minor.

I mean, come on, guys. Does Shane Piche really belong in jail because he raped one 14-year-old girl? The judge didn’t think so! RHB James McClusky thought that 10 years probation seemed fair, because if he went to prison, the other prisoners might not like him. Again, we see that there is a fucking problem in our prison system.

Nevermind the fact that most rapes are unreported! Never mind the fact that he got a child drunk so he could have sex with her! I mean, we can’t really expect people to face the consequences of their actions, right? That would be ludicrous.

He was influenced by the sex in the air!

In one Canadian case, judge and RHB Robert Dewar reminded us all that sometimes, rape is invited:

At the sentencing hearing last week, Dewar said there were “inviting circumstances” when the man convicted of sex assault and a friend met the woman, who is now 25, and her girlfriend outside a bar.

He pointed out the victim and her friend were dressed in tube tops, no bras, and high heels and noted they were wearing plenty of makeup.

Dewar called the man a “clumsy Don Juan” who may have misunderstood what the victim wanted.

He also noted “sex was in the air” and spared the man jail time by giving him a two-year conditional sentence, allowing him to remain free in the community.

Well, hey! Since these women were clearly spraying sex into the air from their lady places like some sort of erotic skunks, let’s just agree that this was a misunderstanding. Like, it’s pretty easy to know whether someone did or did not says yes, in my experience, but perhaps I’m just particularly gifted at human communication?

Other reasons RHB judges have let men off with a slap on the wrist include:

Well, you know, folks, when you put it like that, I understand. These guys deserve a second chance and really, shouldn’t we be giving them the benefit of the doubt?

America Doesn’t Value Women

Our judges, our justice system, and our nation have made it perfectly clear in all of these circumstances who matters, and it is NOT victims. As women, we walk the world with the knowledge that a rapists place in the world matters far more than ours.

I’m pretty effing tired of reading a new example every single day of the ways in which my rights don’t matter because I have a vagina.

Just for a moment, lets consider a scenario. Let’s say that Brock Turner had found a young, white, male college student passed out on the ground that night. Let’s say that Brock Turner decided he wanted some of that ass, and he raped that man, putting his penis inside them without their consent. Let’s say it was a man who got taken to the hospital

Can you imagine Brock Turner getting a slap on the wrist for that? Probably not!

Between 300,000 to 1.3 million American women are raped every year. At least 54% of these rapes are not reported and 97% of rapists are never incarcerated. -source

Lots of people like to ask why women don’t report their assaults. Well, we’re faced with some pretty shitty choices, aren’t we? We can report our assault, and have nothing come of it. We can share details of something that makes us feel violated, ashamed, disgusted, and still have everybody give the benefit of the doubt to the perpetrator instead of us.

We can do everything right, get a rape kit done, suffer being invaded, prodded, scraped, and photographed after having experienced one of the worst things in our lives, and have the case go nowhere. Or, maybe it does go somewhere. Maybe it gets to court! Then he’s found not guilty. Maybe we are extra super lucky and the rapist actually gets convicted. Haha, jokes on us! Just because he got convicted doesn’t mean he’ll be held accountable, or serve jail time!

Some of the examples I’ve given here happened 9 or 10 years ago, and some of them happened this week. Either way, they’ve been happening forever and things are not changing. I’m pretty effing tired of reading a new example every single day of the ways in which my rights don’t matter because I have a vagina. It’s infuriating, insulting, and exhausting.

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Polyamorous, loud laughing unapologetic feminist, rad fatty, and epic sweet tooth.

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