Trigger Warning: The contents of this post may be triggering to survivors of sexual assault.
Today, September 21st, Donald Trump issued a dangerously ignorant statement about Brett Kavanaugh accuser Christine Blasey Ford. The president tweeted, “[…]If the attack on Dr. Ford was as bad as she says, charges would have been immediately filed with local Law Enforcement Authorities by either her or her loving parents. I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time, and place!”
Anyone who has any knowledge or understanding of rape and sexual assault statistics (or honestly, anyone who has been paying even the slightest bit of attention to the national dialogue surrounding sexual misconduct this year) likely knows the egregious error in this logic. According to Rainn.org, only about 30% of sexual assaults are reported to authorities each year…meaning, Mr. Trump, that there is no official record of the majority of sexual violence in this country. Lack of an official police report from the alleged incident involving Kavanaugh proves nothing.
And survivors of sexual assault are coming forward on Twitter to reiterate just that; victims are sharing the personal—and often painful—reasons they opted to stay silent about their attacks.
They range from fear, (unfounded) shame, and often a belief that no one would believe them.
The above tweets are just from a small sample of the thousands of people who have tweeted their stories. While we have a feeling the message behind these posts won’t reach the heart or mind of Donald Trump, we hope they help others who might doubt Ford understand that unreported sexual assault happens every single day, and it’s time for the world to support victims who come forward with their truth.
If you or someone you know is or has been the victim of sexual assault, know that you can reach out to the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673.