This morning, I woke up to see the above video hanging out in my subscription news feed. I’ve been following the Bill Cosby rape allegations somewhat, with a keen interest in the outcome. Quite frankly, I’m convinced he’s guilty. Looking at the legal process he’s chosen to take and the amount of back peddling he’s done, it appears to be an open and shut case. I do believe that false allegations of sexual abuse happen daily from vindictive and angry people, but I don’t believe this is one of those cases especially given the bigger picture here. None of these women can try him in court. All are claiming the abuse happened during a time when the legal system was even more deeply flawed than it is now, and female victims weren’t even properly heard by law enforcement. Men won out in nearly every case. Now the media’s open to discussing sex abuse and I have to admit, I’m very pleased by this.
I understand this is an unpopular and uncomfortable topic, but it’s been kept under wraps for so long because it is uncomfortable to discuss rape, molestation, sexual abuse. It’s severely damaged victims, survivors and the legal processes, allowing for convictions against abusers.
We have to talk about this and look at it. We can’t keep our heads in the sand any longer. Doing so is harming both victims and survivors of sexual abuse.
I feel called to talk about this issue and put it out there a lot to you, Brothers and Sisters. I don’t care what the implications are towards me. I’m not a weak person. I’ve survived a lot. I want the laws to change. I grieve for these women who are finally able to speak out and be believed. I’m so lucky that at age 10, I was believed by law enforcement and action was taken; however, on the flip side of being believed, in Curry County, my abuser received little more than a rap on the wrist at the time. My step-father raped my handicapped sister, molested my younger brother and sexually abused me for more than 6 years and only received 90 days in the Curry County Jail and was released daily for work! If that’s not a lack of justice served, I don’t know what is! He was allowed to come back into the home 4 years later, legally. He still denies raping my sister, and attempts to minimize the amount of abuse he’s inflicted upon me. I seriously doubt that we were the only three children he ever victimized.
We as a society can no longer deny the lasting, life long impact of sexual abuse, whether the victim is a child or an adult. We can no longer silence or shame victims. The ability of the media to inform the masses about uncomfortable, yet poignant topics like sexual abuse has done nothing but good for victims. It’s empowered us to seek the help we desperately need – and I do use the term “we” because we are a community. We understand each other to an extent, on a level deeper than non-victims ever will be able to. Thus, we need to stand strong together and lift one another up, whether the abuse is fresh or decades old. This is the only way I believe change will happen.
To the 15 women (or more at the time you’re reading this) who have stood tall and spoken up about the abuse inflicted upon you by Bill Cosby, I salute you, brave Soldiers of Justice. March on. I’m right there with you!
To all the victims of sexual abuse, past, present (and unfortunately, future) – I’m right there with you as well. Let me know how I can help. I’ll certainly be lifting you up in prayer. Remember: the abuse was not your fault! You did not “ask” for it.
Let’s pray: God we lift up to you all victims of abuse. We ask for Your comfort and Your healing. We ask for Justice to be served and for You to surround victims and survivors with Your loving care. The world can be so cruel, but we trust in You to provide solace and rest to each of us. In Jesus’ Name we pray. Amen.