The Department of Justice reports that an American is sexually assaulted every 98 seconds and that an overwhelming majority of sexual assault victims are under the age of 30. Additionally, one out of every six American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime.
A report out of the National Victim Center and Medical University of South Carolina states that one out of three women who are raped contemplate suicide, and 13 percent of women who are raped attempt suicide.
The DOJ reports that approximately 70 percent of sexual assault victims experience moderate to severe distress, a higher rate than for any other violent crime. Additionally, females between the ages of 16 and 19 are four times more likely than the “general population” to be victims of sexual crimes, including attempted and completed rape.
The DOJ also reports that out of every 1,000 rapes, 994 perpetrators will walk free. Approximately 310 out of every 1,000 rapes are reported to police; 57 lead to arrests, 11 cases are referred to prosecutors, and seven cases out of 1,000 lead to felony convictions.
For every 1,000 rapes, only six rapists will be incarcerated.
Was Dr. Christine Blasey Ford the victim of a sexual assault at the hands of Supreme Court nominee, Judge Brett Kavanaugh?
Many who question the validity of Dr. Blasey’s sexual assault claims have raised questions about the length of time between the alleged assault and her reporting of the event, which took place while the two were high school students. But statistics, many of which come from the federal government’s own Department of Justice, point to an underlying systemic brokenness that could illuminate her silence: sexual assault victims who report their traumas are not only revictimized repeatedly in the process of investigating allegations, but they also almost never receive justice.
Victims of sexual assault have everything to lose by reporting the atrocities committed against their most private, inner selves. And, the overwhelming majority of the time, victims have little to nothing to gain.
On the other hand, sexual predators seem to have everything to gain by committing such abominable acts. Only recently have many powerful predators been exposed, including Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein. Prior to the uprising of the #MeToo movement, it was almost as if nothing could touch sexual predators. Meanwhile, they continued to touch whatever they pleased.
Whether Brett Kavanaugh is guilty remains presently unsure. As accusations mount, with a former college classmate coming forward with what Senator Mazie Hirono regards as a “serious, credible and disturbing” claim of sexual assault, Kavanaugh’s future as a Supreme Court nominee is in question.
Maybe one day our statistics will change and more predators will face consequences for their actions. Maybe that day starts now.