Commentary–Attackers deserve severe punishment for crime

Roxy Hammond

Roxy Hammond

Things happen every so often that make me question the human race. And I don’t say that lightly.

Last month, a good friend of mine was attacked on Main Street by five men. Four of them held her down, while one of them raped her. Right here in Brookings ? you know-small, simple, harmless Brookings.

I hope all of you got as mad reading that as I just did typing it, and as I do every time I picture what my friend had to go through. Being a female, this is especially angering for me, because it’s an ever-present fear in my mind. But even if you’re a guy, this could have been your girlfriend, sister, mother or best friend. And these men do not care.

What kind of human being does it take to rape a woman? In this instance I find myself not only being absolutely infuriated with the rapist, but at the FOUR OTHER MEN holding an innocent woman down while their buddy goes to town. My anger grows and the vomit rises in my throat, while I try to fathom what could have possibly made them think that was a good idea.

And to make matters worse, they were wearing Halloween masks. Not only are they chicken enough to gather in groups of five to rape a girl, but they have to conceal their identities too.

They could all be reading this right now, knowing exactly what I’m talking about; maybe even prepping their masks for their next attack. If they are reading this, I hope they realize how worthless they all are. And I hope they realize that if I controlled the justice system in this country, they’d already be dead.

I’m sorry if I sound psychotic. I can’t stomach rapists. Especially ones that are so cowardly they have to overpower a girl in a big group, giving her absolutely no hope of escaping.

Do not tell me to forgive; do not tell me to forget. Justice is not served when crime is swept under the rug. Justice is not served when my friend can barely stand to be home alone anymore ? and it is certainly not served when there are five men out there who are the reason for that.

They say a rape victim is victimized three times: once by the rapist, once by the police and once by the community. When she reports that rape, there is an automatic shadow of doubt cast upon her character. As if women have nothing better to do than make up stories about horrendous rapes, and then follow it up by living their lives in the emotional turmoil the attack caused them. Give me a break.

I’m very disappointed in the Brookings police department, for filling the stereotype of chauvinistic doubt-filled males. I understand from a criminal justice standpoint that it is necessary to be thorough, but maybe you should consider the trauma my friend has already had to go through before you sit her down and list reasons why she made it up. That’s crap.

This is exactly why rape is one of the most underreported crimes, guys.

My friend didn’t deserve that. No woman does. We shouldn’t have to worry about walking by ourselves down the street because a gutless group of men think it’s okay to overpower and have sex with a woman against her will, and then fear the doubt and judgment we get for coming forward to catch these bastards.

I don’t want to hate men because of this. You must understand, with my hot-headed rationale, when I hear something like this I want to destroy everything with testicles. But then I realize that there are good guys out there, like the ones that want to kill those five men, only after they beat the hell out of them.

Sorry, guys, you’ll have to get in line behind me.

Yet, this column isn’t just my angry rant. I want every female out there to read this and understand that we are in constant danger. Even in this quiet little town of Brookings, in this quiet little state of South Dakota, we have to be on our toes. There are people out there so awful that they would strip us of our dignity, pride and hope … and forever make us afraid of the dark.

It’s infuriating. Just a month ago I wrote a column about college kids becoming victims, and now I’m a hypocrite. I let my friend walk home alone, because it wasn’t far,and it seemed so harmless.

I was wrong. And now I don’t want anyone else to be. Don’t walk by yourself, and don’t let your friends either. Even if it seems chauvinistic, having a guy friend walk you home is much to your benefit, trust me.

And if anyone out there happens to know any of these five worthless piles of crap, please don’t be the weak, pathetic, sorry-excuse-for-a-human they are. Find it in the deepest part of your existence to be the better person. Turn them in, and maybe make one person’s life worth living again.