It's a Good Thing Military Rape Stats Are Up

Marine Corps Capt. Lindsay Rodman says reports are actually being made
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 20, 2013 1:58 PM CDT
It's a Good Thing Military Rape Stats Are Up
Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey gestures as he speaks during a news conference at the Pentagon, May 17, 2013, to discuss sexual assaults in the military.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Lately, the media, public, and Congress have been abuzz over the military's "epidemic" of sexual assault, given a new annual report indicating that there were 26,000 instances of unwanted sexual contact last year. But that figure "is such bad math … that no conclusions can be drawn from it," argues Marine Capt. Lindsay Rodman at the Wall Street Journal. It's based on a survey completed by just 22,792 people. Rodman suspects that sample was disproportionately female; nearly every woman in her unit got the survey, but none of the men did.

Rodman believes things are actually getting better. "Ask the military service member closest to you whether the military takes sexual assault seriously. They will likely talk your ear off about increased training requirements, speeches from their leadership, and more." And part of the message is that women should feel comfortable coming forward if they have problems. "An increasing number of reported sexual assaults … should be viewed as a positive sign that this message is being heard." Click for Rodman's full column. (More sexual assault stories.)

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