Rape Is Not the Victim's Fault

March 21, 2017

Not much can be expected of a society which believes that rape is the victim’s fault. The words ‘w****’ or ‘s***’ are used loosely in today’s day. ‘Her skirt is so short, what a s***!’ or ‘You dress like a w****’ are comments most of us have heard at one point or the other but does wearing certain clothes justify for being called derogatory slangs if not rape? Many in our society still consider rape the victim’s fault. They blame it on the way he or she dressed, the way they talked and even going to lengths of saying that they should have gone out at a reasonable time, indirectly blaming the victim. What I refuse to acknowledge is that just because someone was showing a little leg or went out at night to get medicine, the rape was justified. If that was indeed the case, we wouldn’t be hearing of rape cases where the victim was fully covered in broad daylight or of pedophiles raping children. At what stage does something stop being ’appropriate’? In all honesty, I refuse to believe that rape is justified but wearing certain clothes is not.

‘They are just children, why should their whole life be ruined just because they made one wrong choice’. This is what is being said in the defense of juvenile rapists around the world; one of them being the rapist involved in the Nirbhaya case of December 2012. Rape is not the actions of a child. It is not innocent, it is not naive and it is definitely not justified. The protesters claimed that the poor child has their whole life in front of them, how could one be inhumane enough to ruin their whole future. To these protestors I ask, isn’t that exactly what the rapist did to the victim? The victim was also but a child who had a bright future ahead of them which was snatched away by the perpetrator and the society that blamed these victims for the heinous crime. To all those stating that rapists went through a moment of weakness and deserve a second chance; I ask you this; how can they be provided with a second chance when they managed to ruin another’s. Even if the victim was roaming around bare, it still did not give the rapist the right to take them against their will. Their body was still theirs and consent is required regardless of what the victim was wearing or doing on the day of the incident.

World over, countries have strict laws against crime, ranging from life long prison sentences to capital punishment but there still remain countries where change needs to occur. Saudi Arabia, for example, is notorious for their seemingly unreasonable sentences. In recent times, a gang rape victim was lashed while her rapists were let free with the justification that she was at fault since she had not been accompanied by a male companion. This barbaric rule needs to come to an end! Just because the victim did not have a male with her, did not give the men the right to take her against her will. The judges in Saudi Arabia hide behind the Sharia law, stating that the Qur'an asks them to do so while the Qur’an clearly states that rape is a heinous crime (Hiraba) and that the rapist must be sentenced to capital punishment. The misinterpretation is caused by people confusing fornication and adultery as rape while there is a clear division between the two. Fornication is willing; rape is forced.

Most religions agree with what has been said in the Qur’an. “But if in the open country a man meets a young woman who is betrothed, and the man seizes her and lies with her, then only the man who lay with her shall die. But you shall do nothing to the young woman; she has committed no offense punishable by death. For this case is like that of a man attacking and murdering his neighbor, because he met her in the open country, and though the betrothed young woman cried for help there was no one to rescue her.”, is a line directly from the Christian religious book, the Bible. As one can see in the line mentioned above, the victim is not at blame. It is the rapist who must pay for their actions, not the victim who was merely caught by the wrong person at the wrong time. It has also been mentioned in the Bhagavad – Gita 16.21 that “Lust, anger and greed as three gates which leads to hell”. In a scene from the text, Vidura tells Yudhisthira that the chief cause of crimes remains lust which indicate that people who commit crimes caused by lust, such as rape, should face the torcherous fire of Hell.

As I have mentioned throughout this piece, it does not matter what the victim wears, says or does, if the rapist can not get a hold on their lust and are forced to violate the victim, they need to be punished. Rape is a heinous crime. It is not a mistake and can not happen by accident. It is very well intentional and the perpetrator of such a crime should be put in their place. A sentence must be served and the rapist must be punished. I can adamantly state that victims of rape need to be supported not blamed when the true evil behind the act is the rapist and the creator of the rapist, the society’s mindset.

The author's comments:

Being judged for wearing a skirt or flashing a sliver of stomach is not a crime and yet it is shown to be one in our society. It is about time that we understand just because we enjoy wearing certain clothes or talking to another, does not mean that we are inviting rape.

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