Archive for Saturday, January 24, 2004

Bad example

January 24, 2004


To the editor:

I was shocked at the sentences and comments the judge made in regard to the rape of the 13-year-old girl. "Because there was no use of force or threats, the harm the girl suffered was less than that suffered by some rape victims" was nothing more than a way to belittle the survivor.

Rape is a woman's worst nightmare. Rape changes her whole life, her whole outlook on things. It can never be taken away or forgotten. It must be dealt with.

It is hard enough for a rape survivor to come forward. Judges like this will only make a survivor want to keep her story quiet.

Rape is a very traumatic event, whether you receive a split lip or are beaten. You still suffer!

If this was the judge's daughter, would she have approved of the sentence? Or, what if it had been the judge herself? How would she feel if she was told her rape wasn't as bad as others?

Maybe the judge needs a few courses on sensitivity and human compassion. Or, better yet, sit in on a few of the rape survivors' group meetings. She could be very enlightened. Listen to true stories of the nightmares, flashbacks, being scared to be alone or with others, loss of relationships and other effects of rape.

I hope the district attorney wins her appeal. If these sentences are allowed, how many other boys/men will feel it is OK to rape a girl/woman?

This is a very dangerous example this judge is setting.

Michelle Gainor,


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