The inevitable issue: Rape

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by HeWantsTheBFE, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. HeWantsTheBFE

    HeWantsTheBFE USAFA Class of 2017

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    So I was talking to my friend (who will also hopefully be attending I-day) and a subject came up in conversation. At first, I didn't think to much of it. But it came up a few more times since then, almost as a joke. But each time it does come up, it seems a lot less funny.

    Rape.

    The statistics aren't pretty, and they've shown up all over the place. I could post a hundred other such links.

    Example: http://abcnews.go.com/m/story?id=123748

    12% rape rate? Even if it is half of the civilian college's rate, that's still pretty scary, considering the caliber of people who are supposed to be studying at this fine institution.

    So for my friend, and any other males/females whom this may concern, does anyone have any advice? Any information that may be of practical use to anyone who might know someone who was involved? With it being one in eight (roughly) who are raped I think it would be impossible to avoid not knowing someone.

    Is there anything someone can do to prevent this or mitigate risk?
     
  2. icarus

    icarus Member

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    With the Ohio trial and the Air Force trainer sentencing from Lackland and assaults on women in India on the front pages of the news, it's understandable why this would be a topic that would come up. It hasn't been that long ago that USAFA was mired in sexual assault accusations and the eventual attempt of addressing the issue that still occurs as recent as a few months ago with the court marshal and sentencing of an upperclassman just a couple of weeks ago.
    The common advice given that we've heard are:
    1-Avoid alcohol
    2-Safety in numbers
    3-Avoid situations where you're unnecessarily put at risk.
    4-Be aware of your surroundings and if possible avoid being alone and vulnerable
    5-Educate yourself with preventive measures
    6-Enroll in a self defense class
     
  3. Rage_14

    Rage_14 Member

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    That might have been the culture of the the Academy in the 90's, but in no way is that representative of the school now. If you want to talk about it, get material that is newer than 7 years old.
     
  4. icarus

    icarus Member

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    Update us then O' enlightened one. Give us the latest. Help us out oldies.
     
  5. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    Do sexual assaults happen? Yes, unfortunately they do.
    Fortunately, the academy has prevention training and a strong response system. Cadets have access to several programs that are available 24/7 for help. They can choose to keep any incidents private, via Restricted Reporting (medical help and counseling provided, but no legal response) or initiate a full legal investigation, at their choice. The academy does prosecute, as evidenced by recent Courts Martial cases. (There are also several thousand cadets who tend to be protective of each other...and I definitely witnessed cadets preventing a possible incident involving some very drunk cadets and some overly friendly guys they met at a bar.)

    Now, on the prevention side, there is training for all cadets, but I'll leave it at my observed points.
    1. Associate with upstanding people. Very rarely do people get abused by people widely considered to be paragons of decency and respect. This is very subjective, but you should know it when you see it.
    2. Don't booze it up at parties, especially if you don't follow point 1. Most incidents I've read about involved both parties being intoxicated, and usually one is "blackout drunk." If you are of age, feel free to have a couple drinks, but when you take it to the extreme, you put yourself at increased risk for a myriad of problems, including these kinds of crimes. The vast majority of serious cadet misconduct issues I saw involved intoxicated cadets.
     
  6. BelowRadar

    BelowRadar Member

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    There was a documentary called "The Invisible War" made in 2012.

    It received the U.S. Documentary Audience Award at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and was nominated for an Oscar for Best Documentary Feature.

    disclaimer - have not seen it

    I can't post links so just google it
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2013
  7. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    If you're talking about icarus's comment, it seems to be right on it.

    Yes there are exceptions, but for the most part those steps will keep you pretty safe.

    At some point you have to trust others. The VAST majority will honor that trust and trust you as well.

    12% seems high to me though. I can't imagine 120 cases at CGA.
     
  8. USADadUSAFADaughter

    USADadUSAFADaughter Member

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    Also haven't seen it, but I will now. http://invisiblewarmovie.com/index.php
     
  9. lsredmond

    lsredmond Member

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    My daughter is a C3C and she does not fear for her safety! She loves these guys like brothers and trusts them with her life. That being said, she said that those women who do get taken advantage of are the "party" girls.
     
  10. falconfamily

    falconfamily Member

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    LITS, I think that the statistics in general are very difficult to confirm but some of the claims made in the movie are hard to fathom, i.e. 500,000 women raped in the US military!?. It just does not sound right me, it is counter to everything I ever knew. That said, I agree that there is a problem with how these cases are handled, often there are circumstances that make prosecution difficult, and the system has had some disappointing breakdowns that never should have happened.
     
  11. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    I had 200 classmates. I can't think of anyone (except the one who was Court Martialed) who would rape anyone, certainly not 24 rapists. It was a close class. When my classmate who was eventually found guilty of sodomy and extortion, people didn't rally around him. He was an outcast.

    Now, honestly I can't think of a single friend would would rape someone, I'm not sure many people who associate with someone they thought could. I'm not saying it isn't a concern, it should be on any campus, but I just don't really think of it like that at CGA.

    But then, I'm a white, married male who isn't in the barracks anymore. I'm guessing I had less to fear than my female classmates. But I'd also say, we were very protective of our classmates. Even now.
     
  12. falconfamily

    falconfamily Member

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    I'm with you on that.
     
  13. BelowRadar

    BelowRadar Member

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  14. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

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    Then there's the other side of the coin.....

     
  15. aglages

    aglages Parent

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    Where is the justice in this?
     
  16. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Actually, it largely came out of the 2003 AFA issues. What they decided were, victims weren't coming forward for fear of being held accountable for doing things like, underage drinking.

    So they said "come forward and tell us and you won't be punished for these other things."
     
  17. JMC0759

    JMC0759 S-USMMA '12 D-USAFA '15

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    This is my two cents from the law enforcement perspective. Sexual Assault is a tough offense to investigate. There is usually alcohol involved and nobody can really say what happened. There may be very limited physical evidence and it all may come down to he said/she said. A frustrating case to investigate when two futures hang in the balance.
     
  18. Enlisted_Programmer

    Enlisted_Programmer 323rd Mustangs

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    :thumb:Agreed
    As a military member, I have heard briefings about this issue many times and I'm only an A1C. People hear the advice more than they use it. I advocate the "wingman concept." Have a trustworthy friend with you. Also, the more who do not passively ignore such issues around you, the less likely it is to happen.
     
  19. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    I would love to see the true statistics from a school like Penn State (Main campus up in Happy Valley), where excessive drinking, and likely drugs of all kinds, are the norms there on weekends, and even during the week.

    Ladies, do not, ever, put yourself into a position where you could be in danger, if you can help it. Safety in numbers, and really, forget the booze! And don't get into cars with drunk drivers!
     
  20. melindayching

    melindayching Member

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    I am probably going to get jumped up and down upon for saying this, but not only do the 20something% of women at USAFA need to be mindful of their behavior, their associations, etc. in an environment where they are a significant minority, but the 80something% of men need to also be mindful of their own behavior, their associations, etc. when situations can degenerate. Men AND women need to watch their behavior when indulging in alcohol, and men need to be held responsible for inappropriate behavior just as women need to not put themselves in situations of risk. As JMC said before, it is often hard to get to the "truth" in these situations and just because a male cadet is "exonerated" doesn't mean there is a "false accuser" that gets off unscathed. Yes, I have a daughter, and my husband was in the first class of female cadets, Class of 80. We lecture her constantly about making sure she is not misunderstood and that she does not put herself in a risky situation. I expect the same from the men around her. I don't expect them to protect her, but I do expect that they understand boundaries and respect the women around them.
     

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