So when people meet me for the first time,
sometimes they are a little surprised to find that
I’ve been practicing martial arts almost my entire life.
I have been in boxing, Muay Thai kickboxing
which I am pictured here with this fortunate gentleman.
But I started out early on as a young girl in Taekwondo
and I walked my way through the ranks of a black belt.
This was really special to me, though.
Because my dad, he was my teacher.
He was the one who taught me these fundamentals
of what since become one of the
passions and one of the loves of my life.
When we think about what martial arts might teach a young person,
we probably think about the obvious things.
They teaches them to be self-motivated,
disciplined, physically and mentally strong.
But early on as a young girl, it empowered me.
But it empowered me because I recognized that
I was immediately at a physical disadvantage.
And I needed some sort of skills or tools to defend myself.
Typically, men were stronger.
And, when would that intentions could harm me?
So for whatever reason,
I am latched on to this idea of
how certain people could be disadvantaged
due to basically who they are just as their characteristics.
I grew up.
I went to college
and was the first in my family to graduate with a college degree.
And then I went on to the law school,
as if that wasn’t enough,
I earned a Juris Doctor degree,
and then later a PhD in literature,
and through this really long arduous academic journey of researching and writing,
and teaching college students.
I began to see a connection between my two fields, law and literature,
that I initially didn’t recognize.
And what I mean by this is
I look into law with respect to written court opinion,
like Marbury VS Madison,
or Brown versus Board of Education
because what judges do
is they utilize the elements of whatever the law is in question and they interpret it.
And they tell us as the society what is just,
他们告诉我们 作为一个社会 什么是正义
what is right, what is punishable.
But, I started to analyze law in a different way,
like I did in literature.
Because this type of law, it tells us a story.
It provides a narrative, lessons, themes,
它提供的是叙述 教训 主题
perspectives, both old and new
as to who we are as a society.
When I started analyzing law in this way,
I found that particularly with respect to rape and sexual assault,
both law and literature and society,
often times, blame the wrong person.
They blame the victim,
not the rapist, not the perpetrators, not the criminal.
不是强奸犯 不是干案者 也不是罪犯
But I think this starts from a very popular misconception.
And that’s that most reported rape cases are falsely reported crimes.
And part of this I think is due to the fact that quite frankly
raping convictions in the court of law are honestly quite rare.
For example, in the study conducted by RAINN in 2017-
RAINN being the nation’s largest anti sexual violence organization,
this study concluded that for every 1000 rapes that occur,
230 are reported to law enforcement.
And as those 230, as they trickle down through the system,
only 5 result in conviction.
Why such a low number?
I can tell you that it’s not
because of those 230 reported rapes,
because they were mostly false.
But rather what the story of law tells us
is that rape convictions can be quite difficult to prove in the court of law.
And they are in fact rare.
For example, in people versus Evans and State versus Goldberg,
this law tells us that
in order for a conviction,
that significant signs of struggle,
physical signs must be present.
And physical signs meaning that
she resisted, that she did not consent to having sex with him.
But those physical signs have to be injuries, bruises, broken bones, lacerations.
但这些体征表现为损伤 青肿 碎骨 撕裂伤
In the alternative US EEOC versus Hometown Buffet tells us that
a conviction more likely will arise
if the rapist also commits an additional felony like breaking and entering.
And in this instance,
the defendant was convicted to forty-two years in prison.
difficult to prove in a court of law and very rare.
Along those lines,
we might think in another story that law tells us that
if a defendant gets on the stand,
in a court of law and he admits to the crime.
I did it, I raped the victim.
We might think that he would probably receive a harsh punishment in his conviction, right?
For example in the 2014, Dallas Texas probation hearing,
The State of Texas versus sir Khalil Young.
Mr. young got on the stand,
and he admitted to raping the fourteen-year-old victim.
When the judge could have sentenced him to up to up to 20 years in prison,
she only sentenced him to 45 days in jail.
A five-year probation.
And if he met the conditions of the probation,
the entire conviction wiped away from his record.
The legal community was shocked.
And in an interview with the Dallas Morning News,
the judge explained her reasoning for the light sentence
which was another shocking statement.
And that’s that the judge believed that the victim
”wasn’t who she claimed to be.”
The judge would want to say that she went through the victims medical records.
And she found that the fourteen-year-old had three sexual partners in the past,
and had given birth
which later it turns out the victim had never been pregnant.
But by the judge saying this,
she implied that since the judge believed the victim was promiscuous.
That in the sense she was implicated, she was blamed for being raped.
And she deserved it.
So when we have cases like these, they provide a very powerful message,
and that’s that rapists you’ll receive little punishment if you’re even caught.
Victims, we’re gonna automatically call your part into question,
and we might just blame you instead.
But what happens here is that
what makes it even worse is that the victim was so distraught
at the judge’s public comments and the light sentence
that she regretted even reporting the rape to begin with.
What’s even worse is
when we have cases like most reported rape cases,
where we have “he said, she said” type situation,
and what that means is there might be evidence from a rape kit.
But it’s basically he said she consented to having sex with him,
she says he forced and raped her.
And there’s no physical signs of struggle resistance, non-consent.
而受害者身上没有挣扎 抵抗 非自愿性交的体征
In its defense, criminal law requires proof beyond a reasonable doubt.
So under these circumstances
that burden of proof isn’t going to be met.
So although we have laws against rape,
that doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re effective.
For example, in a study by the CDC, this study indicated that
over 1 million American women
experienced rape every year.
Yet, less than one-third report the crime to law enforcement
because they don’t feel they’re going to be supported
which makes rape one of the most underreported crimes.
So these statistics combined with the Dallas court case
provide a really powerful message.
And that sometimes our society normalizes rape
and even makes excuses for it.
What we can take away from this is what I learned early on as a young girl.
Here I am with my dad. It was a little bit of time ago.
But that was women need to work hard.
We need to be disciplined. We need to be strong. We need to be empowered.
要自律 要强壮 要有力量
But we don’t need to be empowered for the wrong reasons.
And that’s due to fear or disadvantage.
I am not here to villainize or vilify the criminal justice system.
I am merely saying that due to the strict standards of criminal law,
the elements of the crime, and the unique nature of the crime,
rape victims aren’t protected in the same manner
as victims are of other crimes and felonies.
And I haven’t even begin to be able to discuss male victims of sexual assault,
another epidemic in our society
and very well deserving of our attention.
But what we all need to do men and women,
we need to work harder to remove this acceptance of a rape culture
that blames the victim.
Instead of asking what was she doing,
what was she wearing, what was she saying when she was raped.
在被强奸时做什么 穿什么 说什么
The better question is
what made him think that behavior was ever acceptable.
So when people meet me for the first time,