Apparently our neighbor is running for CU Regent. I don’t know her. I’m sure she’s a super nice person. I’ve even been invited to a party for her. Despite my making fun of Stepford, a lot of super awesome people live here.
But I read an article about her that really bothered me. Campus safety is one of her major concerns (so far, so good) but she listed the threat terrorist attacks and active shooters first, then sexual assault. Really, she kind of goes to town on it, invoking Homeland Security (which I believe would have nothing to do with college rape issues).
“I think we absolutely need to be very aggressive about actively protecting our campuses and making sure our students are safe and we’re doing all we can to protect them from active shooters, from terrorism and also campus sexual assault,” Ganahl, a CU graduate, said. “It’s going to take a lot of collaboration between law enforcement and the administration and an open and honest dialogue about the threats that we face, not just pretending we’re doing all we can and that’s good enough.
“We’ve also got to get Homeland Security and other bigger agencies involved to make sure that we are looking at every single angle we can to protect our students,” she continued. “Colleges unfortunately are safe spaces in and of themselves and that makes them targets.”
To be fair, a lot of the article did focus on sexual assault as an issue. And it IS an issue, considering studies show 20% of college freshmen women report being sexually assaulted (most while incapacitated with alcohol or drugs, which, btw, does not make rape any more right than if the woman is stone cold sober).
Now, look, I did some quick googling, and I’m sure this stuff could bear more study, but I’m short on time. However, I wanted to see if my general feelings about this proved true, and they do, far beyond my worst fears.
Here is a linkto a TIME article and list of 2015 campus shootings:
which reports 21 people died that year (including suicides).
Consider that there are 9.7 million college freshmen women attending colleges per year, and roughly 15%-20% of them report experience sexual assault. I just did the link to my google search because there are lots of articles reporting different things and that’s a rough average of what I saw.
(An anecdotal aside, from my experience in college, this number very well could be super low. It certainly doesn’t count all the other college women, nor the men… yes, men get raped too sometimes)
That’s upwards of 2,000,000 young women experiencing sexual assault per year.
TWO MILLION WOMEN, mostly teenagers.
I’m sorry for the tragedy of the college students who died from bullets, of course. But in this country, with guns so prevalent and pressures of college being what they are, I’d call 21 deaths out of tens of millions of college students due to firearms on campus pretty damn low statistically. I mean, we just lapped that this week in Orlando, right?
That’s a .00001 percent difference between firearm deaths on campus and freshmen women being raped.
There’s also a lot of threats of terrorist attacks that amount to nothing, from the stuff I googled, and to be sure, campuses are vulnerable, but I could find nothing to prove they’re MORE vulnerable than anywhere, like say, a nightclub or a school or a movie theater (all of which have actually been more planned active shooter scenarios than terrorist attacks).
Now maybe this lady will really focus on college sexual assault. Maybe the article skewed it (though it quoted her, as I showed above). But on the face of it, her statement of issues sounds like fear-mongering when you look at the numbers, and that bothers me most of all.
Fear-mongering might get people elected, but it doesn’t stop crime.