Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office

This One Tweet Shows Why The Stanford Rape Case Is Incredibly Important For Parents

By
Share
Ad failed to load

After Brock Turner, a 20-year-old Stanford student and swimmer, was sentenced to a lenient six-months in jail after two graduate students found him raping an unconscious 23-year-old girl behind a dumpster, the case gained widespread attention, according to the New York Times. Public outrage ensued, with many questioning the way Turner's class and privilege influenced the case, society's view of sexual assault and intoxicated survivors, and how universities deal with rape cases. The only positive outcome to this mess has been the conversation and backlash it has generated, and this one tweet shows why the Stanford rape case is especially important for parents.

It can be hard to decide what to tell your kids about viral news like this, especially when it comes to the heavy topic of rape. However, actress Vanessa Marcil recently brought up the importance of speaking to children about the case on Twitter, writing, "Parents, talk to your sons and daughters about Brock Turner right now. Teach them about consent and rape culture and the buddy system, now."

It can be tempting to sweep the Stanford rape case news under the rug before sitting down to dinner with your kids, but it's an important opportunity to have a very necessary conversation.

Ad failed to load

After Turner was sentenced to six months in a county jail, his father sent a statement to the judge calling his son's crime "20 minutes of action." The judge who sentenced Turner, Aaron Perksy, explained the six-month sentencing by saying, "A prison sentence would have a severe impact on him. ... There is less moral culpability attached to the defendant who is ... intoxicated." Those phrases are both examples of the rape culture that unfortunately exists everywhere, especially on college campuses. He was drunk. She was wearing slutty clothes. It's her fault for getting so drunk that she passed out. He's a good kid.

In today's world, those are views that are largely held, whether overtly or implicitly. In university, boys talked about getting "cockblocked" when a drunk girl's friends led her away from them. As a prepubescent girl, an older friend shamed me for wearing a short dress after I was harassed by strangers. And when friends and I walk home from a Friday night out, men are surprised, often angered, when we call them out on their behavior as they harass or follow us after we've made our disinterest clear.

Ad failed to load
Ad failed to load

This is the state of the world today, but it will change as we raise our children differently. Talk to them about the Stanford rape case. Tell your daughters and sons that only "yes" means "yes." A person's clothes do not work as a stand-in, and neither does their level of intoxication. Tell them about the two graduate students who helped the girl, who tackled Turner and held him until police arrived. Tell them that being drunk does not excuse their actions — not when they drive drunk, and definitely not in cases of rape. Teach them not only to buddy up with friends and watch out for one another, but to intervene in situations where someone might need their help.

It's those conversations that will ultimately change the way we, as a society, deal with sexual assault. Keeping silent means agreeing to the status quo, and unfortunately, the status quo at the moment often means victim blaming, defending attackers, and giving rapists lenient sentences because they're white males at good universities. If we talk to our children about Brock Turner, we're one step closer to ensuring our sons and daughters don't have to live with those same societal norms.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

8 Things That *Will* Go Wrong Every Time You Plan A Kid-Free Night

The last time my husband and I went out to dinner alone was… actually, I can’t remember. But I can count on one hand how many times I’ve seen a movie in a theater in the last year. Before we had children we used to go out all the time. But even with …
By Liza Wyles

These Photos Of North West Then & Now Will Take You On A Sweet Trip Down Memory Lane

When Kim Kardashian welcomed her first daughter, North West, with her husband, Kanye West, in 2013, her whole life was changed. The social media and reality TV star became a mom for the first time and her Instagram presence took a very adorable turn.…
By Casey Suglia

11 Photos You *Must* Take During The Last Days Of Your Pregnancy

During my first pregnancy, I took a photo each week to document my growing belly. I stopped around 36 weeks, though. I hated how I looked in those pictures, and didn't think I'd want to relive those moments. I was wrong. My second pregnancy was a dum…
By Steph Montgomery

This Is What It Means If Your Pregnancy Test Changes Overnight

The time between when a woman suspects she might be pregnant and when it is confirmed for sure is the longest of her life. Regardless of whether you are hoping for a positive or a negative result, the odds are good that you are sweating bullets when …
By Shannon Evans

6 Red Flags To Definitely Look Out For After Your Baby Falls

The first time my infant son tried to take a few steps, he tumbled and bumped his head on the coffee table. My blood turned to ice in my veins and I froze. There truly isn't anything quite like the feeling a parent gets when their little one gets hur…
By Sarah Bunton

These 9 Instant Pot Recipes Will Make Even The Pickiest Eater Happy At The Table

Like any parent, I've had my share of parenting hits and misses, but one of my favorite "wins" is my daughter's diverse palate. I don't even know if I can take credit for it, but I would like to think I had something to do with her love for lentils, …
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Turns Out, Kim Kardashian's Favorite Mom Products Look A Lot Like Your Own Faves

Being a mom is really hard work, especially for the first few months, and Kim Kardashian West is no different in that regard. Now the mother of three, Kardashian says that there are a few products she just can't live without when it comes to raising …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Soda Might Hurt Your Fertility, Study Says, & Here's What You Can Do

Who doesn't love sugary drinks? I stopped drinking soda years ago, but I still love gulping down those fancy Starbucks coffee beverages. I don't have a big sweet tooth, but I am a sucker for sugar-sweetened beverages every now-and-then. Turns out, th…
By Annamarya Scaccia

10 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 30s

If you're like me, you evaluate the pros and cons of any major life decision. When my husband and I were considering starting a family, I thought about my career, education, and financial stability. I wanted to know how a pregnancy and childbirth wou…
By Steph Montgomery

This Woman Thought She Had An Eyelash Stuck In Her Eye. Then It Moved.

I'm not a person who is easily icked out. As a kid, I collected bugs and thought I was going to be an entomologist and asked Santa Claus for ant farms and nets to catch bees. I'm still super curious about anything that flies and crawls, which might s…
By Karen Fratti

5 Red Flags Your Toddler Isn't Eating Enough

Toddlers are notoriously picky eaters, at least in my experience. You offer mashed potatoes, they want french fries. You give them crackers, they scream for chips. It's frustrating, to be sure, but it's usually their way of vying for independence. It…
By Candace Ganger

11 Ways Your Pregnancy Will Be Different If You Have A Boy Vs A Girl

If you've been pregnant before, you might start comparing your previous pregnancies to that of your current pregnancy. A lot of things can change from pregnancy to pregnancy, based on a whole host of different factors (including how well you remember…
By Lauren Schumacker

35 Moms Share The Most Disgusting Things Their Husbands Do

I'm a human being who revels in challenges. I like when people present me with one, especially if they don't think I can meet or succeed it, and I like taking a challenge on, especially if it's unexpected. So when I aimed to uncover the most disgusti…
By Jamie Kenney

How Having Kids In Your 20s Affects You Later In Life

For parents, like myself, who had kids in their 20s, there are a number of questions that come to mind. When you're deciding what your future will look like, you'll likely consider what this means for your health, career, and more down the line. Thin…
By Tessa Shull

12 Moms Share How They Stay Healthy During Flu Season

Unfortunately, we're in the middle of the roughest flu seasons in recent memory. And we’re not totally out of the woods, either. People around the country are still getting the flu, and, sadly, some of them are having to be hospitalized due to flu-re…
By Priscilla Blossom

8 "Mistakes" I'm Glad I Made During My First Pregnancy

As an adult, I've learned you never really stop hating being told what to do. When I was pregnant I was getting instructions at every turn, from doctors, relatives, and complete strangers on the subway. I would nod and smile but then go about making …
By Liza Wyles

Study: Drinking Two Glasses Of Wine A Day Is Good For Your Mind — Here's Why

There’s more scientific proof that a daily drink or two isn't necessarily a bad thing and could have a place in an overall healthy lifestyle. A new study out of the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) in New York found that — in mice, at le…
By Tiffany Thomas

Research Says Eating Carbs Can Lead To A Healthy Pregnancy, So Bring On The Pasta

In the world of me, no food is better than bread. I know it's supposed to be pretty terrible for you, high in calories, low in protein, and full of that modern-day demon, gluten... but guys, it's really yummy. Especially warm out of the oven, when th…
By Jen McGuire

These Photos Of Prince George Then & Now Will Give You Serious Baby Fever

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child in Spring 2018. With all of the excitement surrounding the new baby, it's easy to forget all of the good times that have already passed. The couple's eldest is already well into the sc…
By Azure Hall

This Is, Hands Down, The *Grossest* Thing Babies Do Inside The Womb

Your baby's life in the womb may be safe and warm, but it's also kind of grody. Seriously, the whole process of growing into a human being includes more than a few icky moments along the way. But this is the grossest thing babies do inside the womb b…
By Lindsay E. Mack