Yes, Alex, “Survivor” Applies to Rape Victims


Ted Bundy in court.

With the enthusiasm of the young, Alex Knepper takes a good debate point WAY too far when discussing the reaction to his college newspaper column about “date rape.”

There is a legitimate point to be made that equating a consensual sexual encounter that goes a minute longer than one side decided is should have, and the sociopath who jumps out of the bushes and forces himself on the unsuspecting, is not a good use of the language or the legal system.  I’ll even concede that avoiding the first circumstance is the best defense against it for the sake of this argument.

However, the following statement just about earns Alex all of the outrage he received from campus feminists:

“Survivor” is a term we typically employ to those who have endured the horrors of genocide, war, or famine, and managed to come out alive. Sexual assault is not a lethal act, nor is it a life-defining event, akin to suffering in Auschwitz. Feminists would like it to be a traumatic event: like Hamas, the more of their alleged constituents that sufferer, the more that they can manipulate people’s emotions — but it’s a terrible debasement of the term survivor to apply it to those who are simplyvictims.

No, Alex, we also say people are survivors of plane crashes,car crashes, house fires, cancer, and pretty much anything that people die from.  And women die at the hands of a rapist on a daily basis. Maybe not from a “date-rapist,” but from a certain kind of sexual predator.  Ted Bundy was a rapist.  The FBI has a whole section set up to deal with it—see Silence of the Lambs sometime.

And to categorically say that sexual assault is not a life-defining event is just wrong.  I doesn’t have to be, but it sure as hell can be.

Since I can’t come close to improving on Jenn Q. Public’s poignant response to Alex, I’ll just leave it at that.