Rape - The Plague of the Modern World

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Rape - The Plague of the Modern World This essay is missing the Works Cited “Before the rape I felt good. My life was in order. I was getting ready to get married. Afterward everything changed. I kind of lost who I was as a person… I asked him ‘Didn’t you have a wife or a girlfriend you could do this with?’ He said ‘I like this better. I like it better this way.’ “ -Victim Testimony, Trial Transcript, People V. Eric Barnes, Kew Garden, New York, July 6, 1984. Rape is a physical attack, not sex. Rape crisis counselors and researchers define rape as an act of violence in which sex is used as a weapon (Benedict 2). A woman is raped in this country every two minutes. Between 1996 &1999 7,787,00 rapes were reported. The actual number is much, much higher because only 26% of rapes are reported. Husbands or boyfriends assaulted 28% of these women, 35% of these women were raped by people they knew; 1 in 4 of these rapes took place in a public place (Grady 4). Rape is a problem that infiltrates all countries and cultures; a Muslim woman who has been raped is disowned by her fiancé and her family for having brought them shame by becoming dirtied and thus not a candidate for marriage (Benedict 2). Cross-cultural research has shown that rape is most common in cultures that are dominated by males and violence. This means cultures in which males dominate the political decisions and cultures adhering to the male ideology of toughness, interpersonal violence and war (Groth 7). In a culture of people with more traditional or sexist gender role, attitudes are more tolerant of rape than are people with more nontraditional attitudes. Traditional men are more likely to report that they would commit rape if they knew they would not be caught; some researchers have found that a traditional man is much more likely to commit a rape than a nontraditional man is. Many attitudes in our culture perpetuate rape, for example: A husband is entitled to have sex with his wife," "A 'real man' never passes up a chance to have sex," and, "A women who 'leads a man on' deserves what she gets (Growth 7). “ Some media depictions may promote rape. Many movies make violence appear attractive and some movies convey myths about rape. Such as slasher films that make violence seem exciting, or movies suggesting that women like to be forced to have sex or that women's only value... ... middle of paper ... ...pe, both sex and aggression become fused together into a single experience called sadism. There is a transformation of anger and power so that aggression becomes erotic. This offender finds the intentional mistreatment of his victim extremely gratifying and takes pleasure in her torment and suffering (Hazelwood 1). Rape is a virus that infects every nation, culture and society. It is constantly referred to as “the unfinished murder”, because of the deep state of despair the rapist leaves the victim in. There is no common identifiable trend that determines who will be a rape victim. Women are not assaulted because of their attitudes or actions, they are attacked simply because they are present. With rapists, just as with their victims, there is no identifiable trend. The old myth that only “sick, dirty, old, perverted men” commit rapes is a lie that society tells itself in order to sleep better at night. The startling truth is that most rapists work under a veil of normalcy. In order for the percentage of rapes to decrease, we have to change our ideas about rape and let go of the old myths of the past. And until this happens, rape will continue to plague our world at large.

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