As the month of March comes to an end so does National Women’s History Month. Women’s National History Month started in 1978 first as Women’s History Week in California. During this week, March 8th was chosen as the day to celebrate Women’s Day Internationally. Senator Orrin Hatch and Representative Barbara Mikulski co-sponsored a Congressional resolution claiming National Women’s History Week in 1981. Then Congress decided to give Women an entire month in 1987. With that being said, a Representative from Wisconsin wants to push the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. The act if put into play would revitalize domestic violence prevention and survivor support programs by providing grants. These programs allow for legal assistance to be made available for victims of violence, undocumented immigrants and same sex couples.
Rep. Gwen Moore pushed this act on the floor. When Rep. Moore pushed this bill, she gave her own personal experience as to why this bill is so important. She confessed that as a child, she was sexually assaulted repeatedly and raped as an adult.
The opponents of this bill were some Senate Republicans, which made Rep. Moore feel as though she were being talked about in the boy’s locker room again. From this speech she made another reference to being date raped. However, some of those in opposition of the bill said the “extras,” added on the bill make it not supportable. The “extras,” of this bill being the possibility for undocumented immigrants to obtain a temporary visa. That excludes conservatives from supporting the bill.
This bill grabbed my attention, because my god-sister was a rape survivor. I believe these crimes are sicken and as big a problem as human trafficking. According to the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network every two minutes someone in the United States is sexually assaulted. That face average to about 213,000 victims per year. The same website stated only 54% of sexual assaults are reported, and 97% of rapists never spend a day in jail. It is a fact that one in every five women are either raped or a victim of domestic abuse. People make fun of Lifetime Network for Women but they are dedicated to helping victims of domestic violence. Lifetime dedicates days, weekends and months to bring awareness to these facts. With these kinds of odds something has to be changed. Why is our judicial system set up for the guilty to be treated innocently? This article infuriates me. I think the new direction that social media has taken could be formed to get the facts out sexual assaults and what we “citizens,” can do to get politicians to make changes. I want to make a change and the first step is awareness.