Sexual assault has affected our global society for well over 10,000 years. We allow predators to roam free in broad daylight and refuse to take any action to curtail their behavior. Quite often when a part of our society is in peril we rush to mend them, because it has a detrimental effect on the whole. Sadly, sexual assault, sexual harassment, physical abuse, and neglect against girls and women doesn’t even get a nod.
“We are the only animal on the planet that repeatedly abuses and sexually assaults the smaller and weaker of the species for fun or sport. We have become a predatory global society that isn’t willing to manage predatory behavior towards girls and women.”
Why are sexual assault and the other predatory behaviors toward girls and women allowed to exist in an information rich global society? Listed below are some facts and a possible approach toward solutions to ending sexual assault.
- One in five women will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime.
- Sexual violence is a global pandemic that has “NO” barriers.
- Sexual violence is a devastating crime where self-esteem, self-worth, trust and confidence are destroyed. Physical and mental health complications arise and can continue throughout the victim’s life. The capacity to hold down a job, support oneself and contribute productively to society is all undermined. Quality of life, health and happiness, autonomy and security are all damaged by sexual violence.
- Sexual violence devastates individuals,families and communities. Distrust and fear permeates our communities and defines how members live amongst each other. We create a lesser community and a lesser society for all of us to live in.
- Sexual violence is a travesty against the fundamental and inalienable Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
- Sexual violence against women reflects fundamental gender inequality and perpetuates it. A culture that doesn’t value a woman’s voice will have trouble respecting a woman’s right to choose who or what she will engage in.
- Violence against women cost the US public over $200 Billion annually.
- Sexual violence is less likely to be reported, to be prosecuted, and to lead to conviction than other crimes. A crime which can’t be successfully prosecuted is, in effect, a “Non-Crime”. Society tacitly condones a “non-crime” as a crime with no punishment.
- Sexual violence is an act of terrorism intended to create fear, perpetuate women’s vulnerability, and therefore their inferiority
- We can end sexual violence through real education about women’s full and equal rights, respectful relationships, and real consequences for criminal behavior.
To end this barbaric crime, victims must break their silence to bring these senseless assaults to an end. We have to believe as a society that we will no longer tolerate this behavior. Sexual assault has no place in our families, communities, and nation.