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The Rape and Abuse of Women in the Military Essay

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The military has become the epicenter for rape and abuse of women, all of which military officials have swept aside with all too little concern. Case after case of rape and sexual harassment are dismissed with little to no investigation made. The women of the military live scared of their male superiors and colleagues, and what they might do. Victims of sexual harassment or rape often see their pursuers honorably discharged and returned to society with no criminal record.

This is not to say, however, that all men in the military commit sex crimes. In fact, the case seems to be far from to a rape victim who states, "I had close friends I could talk to about it [her rape]. I had all the women on the ship behind me a hundred percent. I had the men on the ship standing behind me a hundred percent. Except for this one man, they were all my brothers... I don't think I'll ever find that anyplace else in the world, that sense of camaraderie, that sense of brotherhood." (Unknown, 121-122)

Officials in the military also attempt to teach the men in the military how to conduct themselves. In response to the 1991 Tailhook Scandal, where many women were sexually assaulted at a convention, the Navy released a pamphlet on proper conduct. The pamphlet advises Navy employees to see behavior as a traffic light, with green, yellow, and red areas. In the pamphlet, green actions are safe and not considered to be harassment, yellow actions are so-called gray areas, and red areas are prohibited actions. Examples of green actions would be performance counseling or polite comments. Examples of yellow actions might include whistling, leering, and sexually suggestive touching. Red actions would be anything from displaying nude pictures to rape. In ...


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...ame, but it seems that somebody forgot to teach that fact, as well as several other above mentioned facts about rape and sexual harassment, to the United States Armed Forces. The unspoken fact is that sex crimes in the military continue to endure, and they continue to be dismissed without a second glance.



Works Cited

"Military Faced with Sex Harassment - Woman battle unsympathetic justice system." Bergen Record. Nov. 1992: A-16

Bender, David L., et al. Women in the Military. Greenhaven Press, 1991

Desmond, Edward W. "Rape of an innocent, dishonor in the ranks." Time. 2 Oct. 1995: 51-52

McCuen, Gary E. Crimes of Gender: Violence against Women. Hudson: G.E.M., 1994

Petrocelli, William, and Barbara Kate Repa. Sexual Harassment on the job. Berkeley: Nolo Press, 1994

Shapiro, Bruce. "Rape's Defenders". Editorial. Nation. 1 Jul, 1996: 6-8


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