Letters to the Editor

Shame and guilt should lie with Stanford rapist, not his victim

Paul Harrison, center, carries a sign of protest during Stanford University graduation exercises at Stanford Stadium, Sunday, June 12, 2016, in Stanford, Calif. A group of women's rights advocates are urging a California agency to take action against the judge who sentenced a former Stanford University swimmer to six months in jail for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman.
Paul Harrison, center, carries a sign of protest during Stanford University graduation exercises at Stanford Stadium, Sunday, June 12, 2016, in Stanford, Calif. A group of women's rights advocates are urging a California agency to take action against the judge who sentenced a former Stanford University swimmer to six months in jail for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman. Associated Press

As everyone has heard by now, rapist Brock Turner was given only six months in jail for a horrific sexual assault (what rape isn’t), and Judge Aaron Persky, who gave this lame sentence, will hopefully be recalled.

The damage is done, as the survivor wrote in her powerful and gut-wrenching letter to the court. When a woman is raped and the rapist (with massive evidence) isn’t convicted with appropriate consequences, what does this tell rapists? Go ahead! No one takes it that seriously. A man’s life and career are more important. His life will be changed momentarily, but a survivor will live with this FOREVER. Don’t believe me? Read her letter.

Or talk to me. Because it happened to me. Her story, like those of millions of women, is sadly too common. Please, teach your sons about this. Talk with them openly and early about treating girls and women with respect — not just when they’re sober. We have major hurdles to jump here, but we can all start with our kids.

And for all the women who read this and are survivors, please remember that the shame and guilt should lie with the rapist, not us.

Alisa Piette, San Luis Obispo

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