Criminals are allowed to go free, while victims of rape and abuse are blamed and shamed
The numbers are as grim as ever: In this past month alone, 337 women and children have been raped or assaulted across the country.
Time and again, we are failing to protect people from predators, and it is clear that rapists and abusers are only emboldened by the overall lack of action taken on that front.
There is, it goes without saying, a persistent sickness within our society that needs to be addressed immediately, and it must be acknowledged that, while the culture of impunity is a large part of a problem, society attitudes must be addressed on a deeper level.
First, we must acknowledge that while the number of rapes reported is horrifying as is, it is most certainly lower than the actual number of sexual crimes taking place, because the vast majority of women do not report rape for fear of negative repercussions.
Regarding the protection of sexual violence against children, we most certainly have a long way to go, with many sectors of society not even acknowledging that such a problem exists.
All of this exacerbates the matter and creates a spiral: Criminals are allowed to go free, while victims of rape and abuse are blamed and shamed for what they have had to endure. This further discourages victims from speaking out, and emboldens more and more would-be perpetrators.
This toxic cycle must be shattered for good. International Women’s Day is just around the corner, and so there is no better time to renew a pledge to root out the scourge of sexual violence from our country.