Sexual assault on college campuses is a major issue in America. In fact, one in five women report being sexually assaulted at least once before age 25.
When you add in the estimated 35 percent of rapes that go unreported, it stands to reason that the true number of college campus assaults is even higher. While some try to pin the blame on what victims were wearing or how much they had to drink, rape is not about uncontrolled sexual urge and it certainly is no one’s fault but the assailant’s. It is a power play meant to demean and belittle victims.
Which is exactly what makes the reports coming out of the University of Missouri so disturbing. There, members of the Delta Upsilon fraternity have been accused of giving pledges date rape drugs to incapacitate and sexually assault women.
The allegations started coming out after a wild party in September sent several people to the hospital with alcohol poisoning.
Reportedly, the drugs were handed out as part of hazing ceremonies during Greek Week.
A letter dated September 13, 2016 from the University of Missouri Title IX office to the fraternity reads as follows.
“Active members of Delta Upsilon fraternity allegedly provided each new member with three pills and instructed them to drug women for the purpose of incapacitating them prior to engaging in sexual activity. It has been alleged that new members are required to engage in such conduct in order to complete their initiation process.”
This news comes only one month after the fraternity was suspended for using racial slurs.
And the problem is in no way specific to this campus.
In June, the nation fumed when Brock Turner, known to the media as the “Standford Swimmer,” was sentenced to only three months for raping an unconscious young woman.
#whywomendontreport because men like Brock Turner only get 3 months in jail while still being known as a swimmer and not a rapist.
– Normani stan (@Zoeybaby09) October 14, 2016
Certainly, the way our justice system deals with sexual assault in not up to par. For too long, assault has been written off as “guys will be guys.” It’s time to stop normalizing this behavior.
@washingtonpost Excusing “frat boy” behavior is what makes campus rapist like Brock Turner invincible.
– Heidi (@HeidiRochelle) October 8, 2016
To learn more about the ongoing investigation, check out the video below.
What do you think should be done to stop the prevalence of sexual assault on college campuses?
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, you can find help at RAINN. Call their 24/7 hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE or chat anonymously with a support specialist online. Most importantly, remember that you are not alone.