Should I worry that my daughter will be a target of sexual assault?

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by Wonderfulmom, Feb 6, 2016.

  1. Wonderfulmom

    Wonderfulmom Member

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    My daughter will be applying to the Naval and other academies soon. I remember the days of a lot of sexual assaults against females at different Academies. As a mother, should I worry about this? Are there stringent safeguards in place now?
     
  2. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Less likely than at a regular college, I would think. But when it does happen it typically gets more press.
     
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  3. 624mom

    624mom Member

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    I only have sons but appreciate your concern for your DD. Just my thoughts....first it's my understanding that there are stringent penalties in place at the academies regarding this type of behavior. Guidelines however don't always guarantee compliance.

    I would be concerned just as much at civilian colleges where the numbers for sexual assault and date violence have been on the rise. There doesn't seem to be clear and consistent "penalties" in place in these settings. Sometimes it is handled by the universities and other times by local law enforcement.

    It's a scary thing to send our kiddos out into the world. We can only hope we've given them all the tools they need. Best of luck to your DD.
     
  4. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ Member

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    You are always going to be concerned about sexual assault on your daughter as a mom.

    IMPO, as a woman who served for 26 years, I saw my share of "stuff," but my brush with actual sexual assault occurred at my civilian college. (I got away. Never told my mom.) There is always that possibility, but at the SAs, your daughter will become close to her company mates, team mates, and others, and they look after each other. Women have been at SAs since the 70's (!!!), and the percentage has increased over time so that it's a norm now, mirroring changes in society.

    Sadly, a number of the reported sexual assaults have taken place off-installation, alcohol, underage drinking and he/she said, involved. With a strong sense of self, personal awareness and inner resolve to buck peer pressure, both men and women can avoid those kinds of situations. Those situations can be found at and around any college campus.

    The mids get briefs, on things like date rape drugs, what constitutes consent, using the buddy system, whether in downtown Annapolis or Cancun. There is a sexual assault prevention, counseling and reporting system in place.

    I think the military has more education, training and resources than civilian colleges, and there are Uniform Code of Military Justice and administrative consequences for those found in violation. UCMJ is the military criminal justice code.

    As is true anywhere else, there is pressure not to report. A conundrum is if the victim was committing an alcohol, fraternization or other offense at the same time - that brings different consequences than at a civilian college.

    Have those candid talks with your daughter about date rape situations, being strong and personally aware, setting boundaries, taking responsibility for actions, understanding the impact of alcohol on impulse control, cultivating mindfulness and self-respect, the better to navigate murky situations where consent may or may not have been given. Ditto talks with sons on same things. Lastly, the most under-reported sexual assaults, those against men, cannot be ignored.

    Just my .02.
     
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  5. HopefulDad3210

    HopefulDad3210 Member

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    As a father of a DS, I would just also say to all others similarly situated to me that it is incumbent on us too, obviously, to talk with our sons about respecting women as they would their own sisters/moms and not put themselves in situations where bad judgment can prevail. It's a bilateral encounter, not a unilateral one. Just my thought on it.
     
  6. Wonderfulmom

    Wonderfulmom Member

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    Good point. Easy to overlook that.
     
  7. Wonderfulmom

    Wonderfulmom Member

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    Lots of good ideas/input here. I raised my children in an anti-cigarette and radical anti-alcohol home from the time they were small. While I can't make choices for her, she hates the drugged/somewhat out of control feelings she had from Musilex-DH cold medicine. She also has a very good head on her shoulders and has been resistant to peer pressure in High School. We will talk to her when she gets accepted though.
     
  8. ahs67

    ahs67 Member

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    Why wait until she gets accepted or appointed? It's a conversation we all need to have with our sons and daughters wherever they go to college. Heck, my husband was insistent we start the dialogue while they were in high school.
     
  9. bennington1

    bennington1 Member

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    As the parents of a female mid, my wife and I have never felt concerned over our daughters safety. The Academy and it's support network is beyond compare.
     
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  10. MMA19kid

    MMA19kid Member

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    As someone who has gone to a major public university as well as an academy for 7+ months now, I can assure you that your daughter has a much lower chance of anything non-consensual happening at a service academy. The academies have stringent disciplinary processes that in most cases presume you are guilty until you prove your innocence. This is a powerful deterrent to sexual assault, it isn't easy to just play off the "he said/she said" that goes on in the civilian world. Having to face a disciplinary board or court martial definitely dissuades it. In addition most cadets/midshipmen are people of character and would not take advantage of a woman.
     
  11. usnabgo08

    usnabgo08 USNA 2008/BGO

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    I really hope that investigators and/or disposition/convening authorities are not presuming guilt. While burdens of proof are different for administrative vs. punitive actions, a MIDN has a right to demand a trial by court martial and if the case against them is very weak, it likely will not result in a guilty verdict. Investigators and convening authorities must assume that a MIDN COULD exercise that right. If there is a complaint...it should be investigated and go in the direction where EVIDENCE takes it.
     
  12. Craig

    Craig Member

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    My DD is 2/c at navy has never had an issue.
     
  13. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna Member

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    The academies presuming guilt in sexual assault cases is 0% true. Feel free to private message me if you would like to discuss more.
     
  14. 624mom

    624mom Member

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    Well said! We've taught our boys to respect the girls they date and to respect themselves.

    We've also seen young men have their lives ruined by a situation where a young lady cried rape after getting caught by her parents, the fact that she formally came clean years later was too late for the boy who lost his scholarship and dimmed is bright future. We've known girls to lie about using birth control. So, we've discussed these realities as well.

    Bottom line, as you stated, both sons and daughters need to be taught from a young age to respect themselves and others, to make wise choices, know both when to say no and that when the other person says no...it means no, and avoiding bad situations is a great preventative measure.
     
  15. fddad19

    fddad19 Member

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    Great post. Thank you. DD naval appointment class of 2020.
     
  16. Freda'sMom

    Freda'sMom Parent

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    I would venture a guess (yes, pure speculation without any link to support me) that 95% of all of these sexual assault encounters at military academies involve the use of alcohol.

    Staying sober is the best way to avoid these "bad situations."
     
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  17. Sydney C.

    Sydney C. Member

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    Much has been written in the past few years on the realities of sexual assaults on college campuses. On such piece was written in 2014 for the Centre for Global Research by Joachim Hagopian, a West Point graduate and former US Army officer. After the military, he worked as a licensed therapist working extensively with sex abuse victims.

    Here is the link to his article which includes a bit of data as it relates to the SA's. This may be difficult for some here to read. Nevertheless, it offers a snapshot on what's going at America's colleges and what's being done to address it.

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/rampan...pe-on-college-campuses-across-america/5391303
     
  18. Freda'sMom

    Freda'sMom Parent

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    And sometimes the accusations are false, and the accuser suffers no consequences for the false accusation. http://nypost.com/2016/01/23/west-point-cadet-acquitted-of-sexual-assault/

    Take the case of (former) West Point Cadet Lukas Saul, who can never regain his reputation.

    West Point director of public affairs, LTC Chris Kasker, issued a carefully-worded statement that brought a smile to the face of our editor-in-chief, retired MAJ Glenn MacDonald, himself a former senior public affairs officer and general's aide..

    "In this particular case," Kasker wrote, "a court-martial was held to find the truth and the panel has determined Cadet Saul is innocent of all charges. All the facts were presented in a full and open hearing and the issue was resolved in a manner consistent with military law and due process requirements."

    Translation: The ex-girlfriend tried to play the system and send Cadet Saul to prison, but her "she said/he said" charges were so preposterous and patently false, even the politically-correct Army had to find the defendant innocent. Nothing will happen to the lying second lieutenant because she is a woman.

    Former U.S. Labor Secretary Ray Donovan, upon his acquittal of corruption charges, asked out loud: "Where do I go to get my reputation back?"

    The Army can start by taking Lukas Saul off administrative leave and give him his diploma and officer's commission he should have received last May. All back pay and allowances must be paid at once. And if we had our druthers, the perjurer would be made to pay Gil Spencer's legal fees.
    Warning - graphic language: http://www.militarycorruption.com/lukassaul.htm
     
  19. UAF32

    UAF32 Member

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    Sorry but I not only question that article but the author as well.

    As quoted, "One in five women report being a victim of sexual assault while studying at America’s colleges and universities today. Another study determined that one in four college women have survived rape or attempted rape since age 14. A current trend estimates that one in three women will be sexually assaulted during her life."

    I find these stats hard to believe. Not that I think there are not issues, but that just seems suspicious. These numbers could be true but I would want to ask some more questions about how this data was derived. A few years back handgun control advocates stated alarming numbers of incidents with children and handguns. Well, they neglected to tell you that in their study, the definition of a child was from age 0 through 25 and most of those incidents occurred with the older "children" in their study. Now, I don't know about you, but I don't consider a child to be in their 20's. Question the source and how any stats are compiled.

    Also, is this the same author?

    Cadet Joachim Hagopian was ordered separated from West Point for deficiency in con duct after receiving 107 demerits, an excess of five 6ver the maximum allowed for the December 1971 -- June 1972 demerit period.

    Taken from Page 4 here:

    https://www.loc.gov/rr/frd/Military_Law/pdf/05-1974.pdf

    Don't know if it is him or not and what the final outcome was but this is interesting to say the least. Obviously something must have changed because he does claim to be a West Point grad. I also looked at the titles of some of his articles and couldn't tell if he is coming or going. I also noted he bashed the USMA in one article blaming "losses" in Vietnam and other later "wars" on the military leaders when I think we all know that most of those issues in past conflicts are derived from stupidity in Washington. However, the guy does seem to hit everyone and can't say I would disagree with him on everything.

    To answer the point of the thread. Everyone in any college must be alert and make smart decisions. Alcohol, drugs and hormones are a recipe for disaster for college students. I have 2 sons and tell them to be cautious in all they do because there are many prominent false accusations out there as well and in their situation they will considered guilty whether true or not.
     
  20. landlock

    landlock Member

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    I think there is a much bigger movement now to promote awareness. I have a DD plebe now who knows that my wife and I were concerned about this. She shared this with us from this fall:



    I actually would worry more about my DD at a civilian school where drinking is more commonplace. It seems like USNA is making changes and going in the right direction.
     
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