Wednesday, October 1, 2008

College woman falsely cries rape to protect her reputation

A college woman made up a rape claim because she had engaged in sexual activities and sought to protect her reputation. One suspects that a male would not feel nearly so much need to protect his reputation after having sex that he would make up a vicious lie about it. But how do we change the double standard that looks down upon women who are sexually active?

We likely can't. That double standard is premised on the greater harm to women from engaging in premarital sex: only women can get pregnant. The double standard is not fair to women (just as false rape claims are not fair to men), and we should not support that double standard. In all likelihood, though, it won't ever go away completely -- biology (the fact that only women get pregnant) will keep it going.

The point is, we can't eliminate the motivations for false rape claims, sadly. Nevertheless, what we need to do is confront all such motivations head-on and teach young women that it's never appropriate to lie about rape -- even to protect their reputations. We need to show them what might happen to others -- and to them -- when they do lie about rape. For example, this woman's reputation was made far worse by lying that she was raped. Now everyone knows not only that she engaged in sexual activities but that she made a false rape claim.

A footnote: Look at the crime stats for the college the woman attended: As at most colleges, there are hardly any rapes. Last year there was one. And we know that this year, there is also at least one false rape claim. I wonder if that will be reported in next year's stats.


Police Say College Student Made Up Rape Story

A College of Mount Saint Joseph's student made up a phony story about being raped to protect her image, police say.

18-year-old Brittani Elfers, of Reading, was charged Wednesday with one count of making false alarms.

The investigation was conducted by both Delhi Township Police and by Mount Saint Joseph Campus Police.

Elfers claimed she was raped this past Monday night, but didn't report the phony offense until Tuesday night. Elfers later revealed that she willingly took part in sex acts, according to court documents. The alleged incidents took place on campus, located on Delhi Road.

Those same documents say Elfers reported the phony rape because "she was afraid her reputation was ruined".