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Brock Turner, #Neverforget

This is important. Being raped is a huge fear of mine. Even writing that sentence as a reference to myself is disturbing because I fear that it will bring it to existence. I never invite thoughts of “being raped,” they just surface like an unwanted memory. Hypothetical situations play through my mind that sends shivers down to my toes. I'll think to myself how it would be if I were raped. How would I defend myself? Would I even be able to defend myself? How would I get myself in that situation? What will my family think? How would I live afterward? Would I even be alive to react to it? Would it be a stranger, or someone I knew? ...*takes deep breaths* I’ll repeatedly recite the Istighfar dua (a supplication I was taught to say whenever I had uneasy thoughts, or felt anxious) until the thoughts subside. So I read the open letter that the victim wrote, and for a terrifying moment, I became her. I read her words as if they were my own. There I was, waking up in an unknown place wondering why I was there. Why are so many tests being done on me? How did I get all these bruises? Would I also find out what happened to me through the news? An overwhelming sense of discomfort swept through me, and I couldn’t stop crying. Being a rape victim scares me more than death. Because you have to live with it after it happens. You have to accept that someone has entered your body without your permission. This body has taken me so long to get used to. I try to know every inch of it; I try to control every inch of it. This body is supposed to be my home. I think to myself how foreign it must feel to be in the body of a rape victim. A body that is no longer just yours. IT IS NOT MEN THAT SCARE ME OF RAPE. I do not walk the streets alone and view the men, or women, around me as possible suspects. IT IS THE WORLD THAT VIEWS RAPE AS "JUST ANOTHER STORY" THAT SCARES ME OF RAPE. Just another rape case, just another jail sentence, just another victim, just another Law & Order SVU episode. I am not at all surprised that the media painted Brock Turner, the rapist, as the victim. Duh, of course the white boy from the privileged home is the real victim in this story…oh, and don’t forget that he’s a talented swimmer. I am also not surprised that this story will soon be “just something that went viral” and men like Brock Turner will go on to become “great athletes,” and his father, Dan Turner, will have a son who “messed up that one time.” Oh, and don’t forget about the judge Aaron Persky who will be forgiven for his unjust ruling because he’ll have “more important things to do” after this. So to the victim, I say this, “I am sorry that you will soon be forgotten.” Thanks for taking the time to read this. This was somewhat of a "public diary entry." -Zia

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