A hot topic in today’s college discussion atmosphere, among others, is college “rape culture” (CRC). CRC is the accusation that universities are breeding grounds for men to experience a sudden loss of all logical decision making and control of motor function. This then causes them to commit acts of rape or sexual assault. This claim is supported by the vast majority of media outlets and politicians at large on a daily basis.
Politicians religiously tout the statistic that every one-in-five college-aged women will be sexual assaulted or raped. This is an incredibly alarming number if proven true. Arguably, with a rate of being raped as high as 20%, some would wonder why parents would even allow their daughter to attend a university.
Here are the facts:
1. The 1/5 rule is a myth
This number originally came from a bogus online survey by two universities involving 5,000 anonymous participants. The results from this survey were not verified, nor were participants instructed on exactly what their answers meant.
The survey instructors decided from the answers they received, that 1,000 participants had been victims of “non-consensual or unwanted sexual contact.” The instructors later admitted that their results should not be used as scientific, credible research.
The real number of rapes for college-aged Americans is 1 in 52.6 according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, a branch of the US Department of Justice. That number means that less than 1.9% of college females are sexually assaulted, not 20%.
2. The majority of college rapes are committed by non-strangers
The BJS also showed in multiple of their reports that the overwhelming percent of accused rapists were non-strangers to the victim. This means in over 80% of cases, the victim knew their attacker. This disproves the idea that college males are channeling their primal instincts and sexually assaulting the first girl they see.
3. College students are actually safer than similar people in their age bracket
Nonstudents in the same age demographic as college students are more likely to be sexually assaulted according to the BJS. College students while on campus also have a significantly lower chance of being assaulted, proving that if anything, university campuses are one of the safest places to be.
4. Firearms could significantly lower assaults.
Only in 10% of sexual assault cases did the attacker have a weapon. For strong second amendment advocates, the arming of college-aged women could significantly reduce the number of rapes by giving a would-be victim the upper hand. In fact, “campus carry” has been shown to reduce violence.
5. Less than .002% of students at UTK have been sexually assaulted
According to a report released by the University of Tennessee Police Department, only 34 incidents of student sexual assault have been reported to UTPD or surrounding law enforcement agencies from 2011-2014. That means on average there are 8.5 student sexual assaults yearly with .001% of the student body being attacked.
6. Yes, creating a false narrative does harm
Even though the advocates for creating the idea that campus “rape culture” is a real thing may have good intentions. They are actually making the real assault victims and their stories less believable. They are also creating a violent environment towards students on campuses for fictitious claims of assaults. These narratives are ultimately hurting the victims and doing more harm than good.