The issue: Sexual assault awareness has been going on for decades, but the numbers are still staggering.
Our stance: The statistics are intimidating and more should be done to teach others not to commit the act in the firstplace.
It’s been thousands of years now, when are people going to stop forcing others to have sex with them? March was Sexual Assault Awareness Month in Kentucky, preceding the national month of awareness in April. Despite sharing an awareness month with the renowned April Fools’ Day, sexual assault isn’t an issue to fool with.
It directly affects both men and women, commonly those around college age. For decades, awareness events have been held and programs implemented to help protect people from assault, or at the very least help them to protect themselves.
Very rarely, however, have preventative measures been taught—other than the mantra “no means no.” And despite support, some voices still go unheard and issues unreported. The silence from victims is deafening, but these statistics speak louder than words could. Every 107 seconds another American is sexually assaulted, roughly the amount of time an average reader would have taken to read this column.
Our culture doesn’t accept victims after their circumstance. Our society shames victims into silence through fear and manipulation. Perpetrators continue only because our world makes their actions permissible. Well, no more. Pay attention. Speak up. Protect each other.