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Societies Normalization of Sexual Violence Against Women

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Societies Normalization of Sexual Violence Against Women essay
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Have you ever heard the term rape culture while watching the news or seen it while scrolling through social media? Chances are you have. Rape culture is a phrase most Americans have heard countless times but may not truly understand what it represents. According to Marshall Universities Womens Health Center, rape culture is “an environment in which rape is prevalent and in which sexual violence against women is normalized and excused in the media and popular culture. Rape culture is perpetuated through the use of misogynistic language, the objectification of women’s bodies, and the glamorization of sexual violence, thereby creating a society that disregards women’s rights and safety” (“Rape Culture”).

Sexual violence is a term that goes hand in hand with the defintion of rape culture, but it is often not discussed as openly because people consider it to be a taboo topic. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention defines the term sexual violence as any sexual act or attempt to obtain a sexual act by violence or coercion, acts to traffic a person or acts directed against a person’s sexuality, regardless of the relationship to the victim. College campuses are known for not reporting cases, covering them up, or simply ignoring them in order to keep a safe reputation.

Todays society has become desensitized to the seriousness of sexual assault and rape on college campuses, due to reports not being taken seriously, false claims, and victim shaming. As a society, we need to be more aware of the seriousness of the crime and do more to put an end to it. Americans often have differeing opinions on what should be done when cases of sexual assualt arise, and it is no different when these incidents occur on college campuses. Many universities chose to handle these sistuations internally to avoid losing funding or tarnishing the reputation of the school. However many colleges do report these crimes to the authorities because they feel it is their responsibility to keep students safe and help them when they fail to do so.

In 2017 alone, three out of every four campus sexual assualts went unreported because victims believed the assaults werent serious enough to be reported to authorities. That meaning only twenty percept of sexual violence against women on college campuses were reported. (Spakovsky 2). The government has also changed the guidlines over the years about what universities must do when sexual assaults are reported in order to hold them more accountable for crimes on campus. Hans von Spakovsky stated, “On May 1, 2014, the Department of Education released the names of 55 colleges and universities that the OCR was investigating for their alleged mishandling of sexual assault and harassment complaints.

By July 29, 2015, this had increased to 145 investigations at 128 colleges and universities” (6). These statistics prove that universities are not taking acusations as seriously as they should be Another reason sexual violence is excused is due to the fact that some claims have been proven to be false. Although there are untrue reports made, the fact that sexual violence takes place on college campuses can not be ignored. According to the US Justice department only one in forty women actually experience some type of sexual assualt while in college, this statistic has been proven wrong by many different studies and has come out to be about one in every five women, but it is still being used to justify policies created by schools to not report the alleged crimes (Spkovsky 7).

False acusations are one of the key factors that inflence todays rape culture, they have become more discused in the media in recent years even though the number of these false accusations has decreased. About two to ten percent of cases reported are later found to be false. Media tends to talk more about the few women who lie about being sexually assualted than the many womenn who have actually gone through the trauma, which causes society to believe it happens more than it actually does. Rape culture can also be attributed to societies constant victim shaming and degrading of women. Time magazine reported on a recent case that took place at Yale University.

The defendants lawyer publically stated “If you flirt with somebody, you have a little bit too much to drink, you invite him back to your room, and you’re wearing provocative clothing, don’t be surprised if the individual looking at you is going to be provoked,” he added. “People need to take responsibility for the signals they send. All this outrage about the questions I asked is really ridiculous. You don’t get a free pass just because you claim to be a victim” (Reilly). Blaming women for drinking too much, dressing inapropriatly, or leading men on, are all ways to take the blame away from the perpetrator and put it onto the victim. This is a tatic used in many cases to make the victim believe it was their fault or that there isnt enough evedince to follow through with pressing charges.

Actions like this encourage the idea that women who have been sexually assaulted were asking for it, making victims less likely to come forward. Sexual violence is a large problem in todays society, but many people turn a blind eye to the topic. If this continues to happen assualts will only increase and reports of the crimes will decrease. In order to prevent sexual violence from occuring, society needs to change. Schools must start doing more to protect victims of sexual assault and less to cover up the crime.

Campuses should be safe for everyone and it should be a top priority to ensure that all students are safe and protected. It is time for the media to stop victim shaming, reporting false acusations and start pressuring society to take sexual assault more seriously. Sexual violence and its consequences is a serious topic that must be discussed rather than contnuing to normalize sexual assault and blame the vitims.

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Societies Normalization of Sexual Violence Against Women. (2021, Nov 19). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/societies-normalization-of-sexual-violence-against-women/

FAQ

What are the social norms of gender-based violence?
Social norms are contextually and socially derived collective expectations of appropriate behaviors. Harmful social norms that sustain GBV include women's sexual purity, protecting family honor over women's safety, and men's authority to discipline women and children .
What are three social effects of gender-based violence?
In extreme cases this violence can lead to severe disability or even death, but even in less severe cases VAW impacts on the everyday lives of women and girls. VAW hinders their ability to earn a living, access education, and participate in social and political life .
What is the normalization of violence?
The normalization of violence is the acceptance that violence is an immutable part of life, that depictions of violence do not have real life consequences, and that it is the. responsibility of the victim, not the perpetrator, to prevent violence.
Which country has the highest rate of gender-based violence?
A UN report compiled from a number of different studies conducted in at least 71 countries found domestic violence against women to be most prevalent in Ethiopia .
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