Thursday, February 9, 2012

Rape victim's comment regarding anonymity

FRS will not tolerate any disrespectful comments in response to the following. Victims of rape have expressed support for the mission of our blog, because they recognize that our mission is not inconsistent with theirs. The following was a comment written by someone who tells us she was a rape survivor. She left this under our story about how the New York Post named Greg Kelly's rape accuser. This is a point of view that FRS respects, although we are conflicted about it.  Among others who disagree with the reader are Naomi Wolf and Alan Dershowitz, who are not speaking out of vindictiveness. FRS is less sure. We can see utility in the view expressed by the reader -- mutual anonymity for the accused and the accuser.

I would add this: the reader expresses an opinion that many paid victims' advocates do not share in two respects: First, many paid victims' advocates have no concern for falsely accused men -- none; second, paid victims' advocates insist that news about false rape claims keeps women from coming forward.  We have often made the point that paid victims' advocates have interests that are not entirely consonant with those of actual rape victims--the former seek to justify their work in ways that do not necessarily advance the interests of the latter.

Here is the comment:

"I absolutely agree that the accused should remain anonymous, as well as the accuser. Just as I hope that any DNA evidence that can be tested now in cases of convicted rapists, which was not available to clear them at conviction, should be tested. The thought of an innocent person in jail is horrifying. The idea of naming rape victims is devastating. I am a survivor of a horrendous rape, a crime that was so devastating, 12 years after I still have never slept a full night, I sleep with every light on. I declined to name my accuser, because I was horrified by the idea of being outed as a victim myself. I was in medical school, how would people trust me to take care of them? In the age of the Internet, a victims status is a google search away. Being raped defines me emotionally spiritually and physically. I could not let it define me professionally, I had to protect people who loved me from knowing everything I went through. I respect your agenda to help the wrongly accused, but advocating for victims to be named makes you seem vindictive, not advocates for justice. It's not the way to protect the survivors of sexual assault, nor the accused. Women falsely reporting rape didn't make it harder to come forward, being forward known as a victim did."