Rolling Stone’s Article May Have Hurt Rape Victims

As time passes, there seem to be more and more discrepancies in the Rolling Stones U-Va rape story. Much of what the story claims has proved untrue. The man who was said to be the ring leader was neither a member of the fraternity nor had he ever dated the young girl. The night that the alleged rape occurred, there were no social events at the fraternity house in question.

I do not want to say that there was not some sort of sexual assault. Never would I want to accuse a rape victim of making up the story, or falsely accusing the person who raped her. It does seem that something did happen that night to the girl, but what exactly, at this point seems to be unclear.

There is much that we could say for the state of our colleges and universities. It seems that we are producing a culture that has little or no regard for the respect and safety of women. The culture that regards women as objects is made harder to overcome by such situations as the publishing of the Rolling Stones article.

Whether the story told by Jackie in the article is entirely true, partially true or entirely fabricated; there is much damage being caused by the rush to print attitude of the writer and the editors. This damage will never be publicized in a newspaper or magazine. No one will be able to say, “Hey, here is the damage you caused.”

The reason that this damage will remain unseen is because it will be the damage of credibility. When the next young girl comes to claim rape on U-Va or any other campus, there will be doubt. This problem already existed before this story and now lends to the problem credence. Justification of the temptation to doubt that this and every other cry of rape happened.

To be sure, there is a tendency by many to vilify young men. That they only think of themselves and that they cannot control themselves. That our young men, because of various entertainment sources, view women as objects and not as people. And though this can be true of some young men, it is entirely wrong to broud brush all young men this way.

It would then be just as wrong to assume that every woman who cries rape is a jilted girlfriend or the disgruntled victim of a one night stand. When handling each case, we should hope that there is a honest attempt to find the truth.

It seems that some good things have come from the article. Several victims, heretofore lacking the courage to voice what happened to them have come forward. These seem credible and hopefully, if true will lead to justice for these young ladies. That aside; this article and its inconsistencies may cause much more damage than good.

We can only hope that friends, schoolmates, faculty and law enforcement will make every attempt to deal with each case unjaded by this strange event. And that society will once again teach our young men that women are not merely objects but that they are to be respected and protected.