I am disappointed that The N&O chose to publish Froma Harrop’s Jan. 16 column “Is ‘stranger rape’ more troubling than ‘date rape’?” questioning the severity of date rape.
As the father of a girl and two boys, I am worried about the message thinking such as this sends to them.
To my daughter: Is she supposed to believe that a violation of her right to control her own body is less violative because a man she knows is responsible? Are my sons to understand that “no” means “no” unless, of course, they’re dating the woman, then they can push the boundaries? Certainly no good parent would ever teach such things.
This is dangerous and, frankly, disgusting thinking. “No” means “no,” and a woman’s right to personal autonomy and control over her own body should be respected.
If anything, the violation committed by one who abuses trust and familiarity is more damaging, but to attempt to distinguish between “types of rape” is not helpful.
Shame on Harrop who, despite her repeated attempts to disclaim such conclusions, is essentially reinforcing an attitude that claims that certain women are just asking to be raped by their behavior. That is barbaric.
John D. Burns