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The fight against Brock Turner

Meg Friel, Editor in Chief

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“You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we’re here today.”

Brock Turner, (son, swimmer, student, rapist, repeat), has recently grasped media attention by becoming the poster child for white, male supremacy. For those of you who don’t know of Turner, he has made headlines week after week due to his starring role in the ‘People vs. Turner’ case.

Much like many teenagers my age, I knew about the events that unfolded that night, and outraged, I wanted to learn more. I read the open letter to the judge written by the victim (as seen from the quote above), and felt I needed to write about this.

The story goes something like this: unconscious girl is found half naked behind a dumpster with young Brock sexually assaulting her, , only to be stopped by two Stanford students who happened to be passing by at the right time. The details of the night are not only cruel, but heartbreaking. Victim “Jane Doe’s” life was changed forever.

Brock Turner’s, however, was only changed for three months.

While Turner’s sentence was shockingly short (only six months), he was released after three months on “good behavior.” Congratulations, Brock, you managed not to rape anyone while in prison. The judge on the case, Persky, was quick to favor Turner and even provide him the short sentence of only three months. Note, Persky sentenced a Latino immigrant three years in prison for the same crime.

There are many things that infuriate me in this case, but the one that most frightens me as a young journalist is the presentation in the media of Brock. Every headline, whether the story be a negative connotation of the case or not, seals Brock with the same title: “Stanford swimmer…”. Brock no longer deserves the title of being a Stanford swimmer, and this should no longer be the legacy that he carries. This coverage of Brock only enlightens his image of what he used to be: a young, promising student at an elite university with a future in swimming, rather than what he’s now branded himself. He doesn’t deserve the title of a student, a swimmer, or a son, but rather, a reckless, ignorant, selfish criminal that not only ruined the life of his victim, but also changed the lives of millions of people around the world who now pose question: In school, at home, at parties, with friends, around family, by ourselves; wearing a miniskirt, a sweater, jeans, or sweatpants, are we ever safe from people like Brock Turner, and are we ever protected by the people that are meant to defend us the most?

As a young female student myself, this makes me feel like my security is questioned every time I go to a school dance, a football game, or even just walking to my car after practice. This victim in particular wasn’t doing anything to attract Turner. She was with people she trusted, dancing, having a night out with her sister that only ended in one of the worst nights of her life. To think this could be me, MY sister, MY best friend, makes me feel like I need to be part of the solution. Much like me, many high schoolers and college students alike have felt the pressure to speak out against rape culture, specifically involved within this case. This could mean a number of things, the first step being signing the petition to impeach judge Persky. Go to: https://www.change.org/p/california-state-house-impeach-judge-aaron-persky to take the first step.

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The student news site of Biddeford High School in Biddeford, Maine
The fight against Brock Turner