So now we’re victim blaming 8 year olds?Posted: May 31, 2010
I was reminded of this case today when reading the girl’s mother’s account in a paper today at work (I forget which one). Two 10-year-old boys were convicted of attempting to rape an 8-year-old. I don’t know the ins-and-outs and it worries me what they had been exposed to if they knew what they were doing. I hope that they didn’t and it was just a game gone too far.
But what distressed me was the way that the defense treated the girl. I know that it is their job to try and defend the two boys and as such proving her to be a liar was perhaps their method. But really? Surely it’s using leading questioning to convince the girl to tell the jury that she’d lied because she was worried about getting sweets? She’s 8 years old for god’s sake. She doesn’t know what rape is. She would hardly be lying. Especially for sweets.
But it’s symptomatic of this world where the only rape cases that get reported are those in which the girl has lied about the situation. Whilst that is an awful thing to happen, it is no worse and no more remarkable than an actual rape. And it creates a world where there’s always the inclination to think that the girl (or boy to be fair) is lying for attention, for revenge, because of mental health problems, whatever. And now they’re doing this to an 8-year-old girl? She is the VICTIM. Hear that? VICTIM. She’s been assualted. If she had said they had tried to stab her would the lawyer have used the same tricks? I doubt it. This is why rape conviction rates are so low. This is why most people don’t feel comfortable coming forward when they’ve been raped and yet wouldn’t hesitate nearly as much if they had been mugged or simply just beaten up.
Maybe she should have worn one of these atrocious things?
Designed to prevent rape, it puts yet more onus on the victim. It’s victim blaming with yucky condoms. Firstly, if the guy gets that far then the rape has already occured. And secondly, do you really think that someone who’s just had his cock shredded is going to run away from his victim rather than inflicting his rage on her? Well done.
But even more than that, it’s not up to the victim to prevent rape. Obviously everyone should look after themselves, it would be silly to walk around alone after dark or get into a car with a stranger for example. But nothing you do means you deserved to be raped. If you didn’t wear a horrible condom with teeth in it all the time then it’s not your fault if you get raped. If you wear a short skirt or flirt with a boy or drink a bit too much – it is *not* your fault. Remember that.
So people, can we please just stop blaming ourselves for these things? Victim blaming is so 2009 and this is the future now so let’s make a change. Always assume that an accusation is real until proved otherwise, like you would with murder or theft or any other form of assualt. And don’t blame the victim anymore. Pretty please.