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Rape Statistics and Why They Shouldn’t Go Unreported

Judging from the confident, luxurious life, Madonna leads; it’s difficult to assume the iconic pop star lived a life less extraordinary in the past. Dig a little deeper, and one will find how far from reality that particular story actually is. While promoting her new album, Rebel Heart, Madonna made time to visit The Howard Stern Show and discussed some rather enlightening details regarding her past with host Howard Stern. During the interview, Madonna revealed, that while living in New York at age 19, she had been sexually assaulted.

This isn’t the first discussion Madonna encountered regarding the topic of rape. During a 1995 interview with a British magazine, Madonna confessed to being sexually assaulted, explaining that the experience forced her to become a survivor.

When asked Madge chose not to report the incident, she responded saying “You’ve already been violated. It’s just not worth it. It’s too much humiliation” 

I have a vast problem with that comment, and here’s why.

What is probably most shocking about the incident, isn’t the fact that it actually occurred, but that she chose not to report it. Each year, there is an average of 293,066 victims of rape and sexual assault, and 68% of those incidents go unreported. The realization of this statistic is astounding, because most rapists will never spend a day in jail, due to the fact that the incident goes unreported.

Rape Statistics and Why They Go Unreported

Photo: RAINN (Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network)

Although many would agree that the process of reporting a rape is highly uncomfortable, it is in no way redundant. It is likely that Madonna’s rapist went on to rape countless other women, but lets assume that one of those victims was a twelve-year-old girl. Would we agree that it is acceptable for the rape to go unreported then? Or, would that child be persuaded to report the crime instead?

Not everyone, who was a victim of rape, will be able to carry on with a cool, and nonchalant demeanor such has Madonna has. I find it slightly odd that she chose to discuss the incident now, on a national radio show; just weeks before her new album is to be released.

But I won’t let my cynicism get the best of me. However, it is safe to say that the victims of rape will never fully be the same after such an incident has occurred. Many will suffer paranoia and depression, forgo intimate relationships all-together, and most-likely have to attend therapy for the rest of their lives. There is no way I can personally comprehend the difficulty one faces when reporting a rape. But, if I had the opportunity to prevent such an incident from occurring to anyone else, much less a child; I would do everything in my power to do so.

Imagine the lives which could be spared, if only a previous victim had come forward?

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I am a journalistic enthusiast, born and bred in Washington, D.C. When I'm not busy meticulously constructing posts, I can be found burying my head in an epic novel, cooking a delicious mess in the kitchen, scouring local thrift stores, and spending way too much time binging on Netflix (Arrested Development anyone?). I cannot live without a good playlist (Billy Holiday is preferred), working wifi (sometimes not always working), and Dunkin Donuts coffee (caramel swirl is my go-to flavor). If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to direct them to the email below. Happy Reading!

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