Monday, October 4, 2010

Rape is rampant, Dartmouth kids erroneously maintain

"Trust your feelings. If you feel you are being pressured into unwanted sexual activity you are right."- Dartmouth College Annual Security and Fire Safety Report, September 2009
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There is a terrible disconnect between the reality of sexual assault on America's college campuses and the reality of sexual assault claimed to exist on America's college campuses by feminists and progressives.  Feminists and progressives insist that our campuses are cisterns of male sexual predatory misconduct when that simply is not the case.

One rape is one rape too many, of course, just as one burglary is one burglary too many.  But is rape an epidemic?  Is it the most pernicious public health crisis on campus?  Do men, as a class, need to relearn to respect both sex and women?  Some students at Dartmouth College seem to think so, as shown in today's Dartmouth student newspaper. 

Before we get to the Dartmouth students' comments, let's ask ourselves, how prevalent is sexual assault at that revered ivy league school. The Jeanne Cleary disclosure law requires that colleges publish statistics for criminal offenses reported to campus security authorities and/or local police agencies.  Please underscore the word "reported" because, by necessity, this includes, without differentiation, false, mistaken, and disputed claims. We have demonstrated here that false claims are significant.  In 2008, Dartmouth had approximately 3.9 forcible sex offenses per thousand students enrolled, or 22 total.  That number was less than half the following year -- approximately 1.4 per thousand student, or, 10 total.  Almost half of the students at Dartmouth are women, and for the sake of argument, let us pretend that only women are raped. Thus, in 2009, approximately 3 out of every 1000 women in the Dartmouth population reported they were raped.

It is difficult to fathom how those numbers translate into a rape epidemic. But one would never know that from comments published in Today's Dartmouth student newspaper by students at the college.  They regurgitate the mantras of the sexual assault industry, and their comments seem to implicitly accept as fact that rape is rampant and in need of a desperate solution.  Among the comments:

"The administration should provide better orientation to incoming students that gives insight specifically into the fraternity scene at Dartmouth and not just a generalized 'alcohol education' program. Student panels that explain our social scene norms to freshmen before they ever enter a fraternity may help to combat the false assumption that Dartmouth is 'so safe.' —Natalie Colaneri ’12"

"The burden falls on SPCSA to work with Greek leaders to create a zero-tolerance policy on sexual assault that is religiously enforced. —Suril Kantaria ’13"

"It’s the role of every person on campus, not just the administration, to assure the physical safety of students. President Kim needs to make sure those who commit sexual assault are investigated openly and punished with transparency. —Spenser Mestel ’11"

"Isn’t it ironic President Kim has done so little about the most pernicious public health crisis on our campus? The administration needs to start making concrete steps to show that it not only has a plan, but the will to actually implement it. —Josh Kornberg ’13"

"Sexual assault springs from national, even international, cultural sicknesses which, sadly, lies outside the administration’s purview. Until men relearn to respect both sex and women, there is very little to be done. —Peter Blair ’12"

"Here’s a suggestion: stop handling all reported sexual assault cases through the Committee on Standards. By keeping the judicial procedures internal, the College is complicit in the silence around rape on campus, a stealthy move that allows the problem to continue unabated. —Jordan Osserman ’11"

"If this is not the role of the school’s administration to work on this issue, then whose role is it? No more seminars/talks or other useless gatherings which nobody listens to anyway. I suggest some measures of tighter alcohol control, closer monitoring of the Greek houses, encouragement for the victims to openly name their offender and perhaps stricter post-factum punishment. —Rustam Jamilov ’11"

So, then, how can anyone explain the disconnect between the reality that there are few reports of sexual assault (and even those reports must contain false and mistaken claims), and the beliefs of seemingly intelligent students who spew the progressive line that rape is rampant?  The only way the two can be reconciled is to invoke underreporting, of course.  We've demonstrated every way possible that underreporting is a canard, a vile snare and a politicized delusion. See here. Yet it remains the all-purpose trump card to "prove" rape is rampant. It goes like this: rape is rampant because no one is reporting all these rapes that must be occurring, which, of course, proves rape is rampant.  The absurdity need not be spelled out to a reasonable mind.

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But let's end this post by taking it one step further.  Progressives don't buy the fact that rampant underreporting is a politicized lie, so let's pretend, for the sake of argument, that rampant underreporting is a fact (it is not).  As we've shown, society has done everything possible to make reporting rape and convicting men and boys accused of rape, both the guilty and the innocent, easier.  Read the list of reforms.  Yet, we are told, women still don't report rape.

Isn't it time to start blaming the women who don't report?  I can hear the gasps from the progressives. The rest of you -- those who didn't check your common sense at the front door of your Women's Studies' Department -- think about it this way: most rapists, we are told, are serial rapists. That means that every woman who fails to report is putting another woman in danger.  That seems lost on our progressive friends who will say anything to excuse women from reporting.  One needn't wonder long about their motivations: there are significant financial interests at stake in being able to say rape is rampant without having to prove it.

In many states, failing to report a sex crime against a child is, itself, a crime.  Why not extend this to the rape of women and hold the alleged victims responsible for reporting? Instead of turning a blind eye when women fail to report that a vile felon is on the loose, and instead of using that failure to report as "proof" that yet another rape occurred, how about holding women accountable to help end the rape "epidemic" by reporting their rapes?

Bottom line, folks: it is infuriating for someone who advocates for the falsely accused, as I do, to have the thing I advocate for trivialized because rape is supposedly a much more serious problem,  an assertion that is "proved" by underreporting. It is doubly infuriating to have members of the sexual assault industry excuse -- never discuss, never speak out against -- the purported underreporting.  (And, no, blaming men as a class for rape is not speaking out against underreporting. Men, as a class, don't rape. Criminals do.)

If rape is an epidemic as you say it is, insist that the victims report the crimes and let's have the judicial system figure it out.  The fact that you won't do that is yet more evidence that underreporting doesn't exist, but that you are just fine with the fact that people believe it does.  If it does exist, you are putting innocent women at grave risk by not insisting that rape victims come forward.