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BU student sexually assaulted in her dorm room

The Daily Free Press reports on an incident around 2 a.m. today in a dorm on Harry Agganis Way.

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The suspect was described by the female student as a college-age white male with brown hair and a medium build. The student reported he was wearing a dark-colored long sleeve button down shirt and down vest.

That could be any one of hundreds of guys in town for the Head of the Charles Regatta and now gone.

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Everyone entering the large BU dorms has to go through a security checkpoint to either swipe (residents) or be signed in (non-residents), so there should be some record/video of him entering the building.

When I was an undergrad, the guest policy was that non-building residents were prohibited from entering the large dorms with security checkpoints after 12 am. The policy was unenforced in the smaller, brownstone-style dorms that did not have security guards. A lot of students protested, saying that it was unfair that they could not bring their drunken hookups back to the dorm because "we're adults!"

The year I graduated they repealed the policy for the following school year, against the advisement of the university's resident assistant groups. Sexual assaults by strangers in the dorms Thursday-Sunday after 2 am skyrocketed starting that year.

Having lived in Warren Towers as a freshman myself, I think the original policy was better. Large BU dorms have 600-1600 teenagers living in each building, many of them with limited street smarts because they either came from areas where street smarts were unnecessary (re: my friends from Vermont, who never had keys to their homes because Vermonters don't lock doors) or had helicopter parents and were never allowed to develop street smarts. Many of my friends- people with similar values to me- took incredible risks as undergrads, and it seems dangerous to me that the safety of 1 person should rely on the judgment of 499-1599 other teenagers who share a common home.

That said, it is entirely possible that the suspect lives in the building and is a fellow student.

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Agreed, it's much more likely that he lives in the building

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I remember it being 11 pm. There were little paper plates with 11's crossed out (Ghostbusters style) in all the windows at Warren Towers. There was a rally in front of Marsh Chapel -- the "Free Speech Band" played Grateful Dead and Allman Brothers covers, people played hackey-sack and then Abby Hoffman spoke to the crowd.

A few months later he committed suicide. I always assumed it was in response to the pathetic state of student activism in general and exemplified by BU students wah-wahing about not being able to have boy/girlfriends in their rooms over night.

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And who have access to these rooms.

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The alleged incident occurred at 2 am but the alert to students didn't go out for 11 hours? That indicates the incident wasn't reported right away. There could be many reasons for this but I've often seen with young people, especially if alcohol was involved on a weekend night, where contact that seemed consensual at 2 am, is a felony at daybreak. That's not to minimize the horrors of sexual assault nor am I saying that's what happened here. No doubt with cameras, the suspect will be caught. It will be interesting to see this to its conclusion.

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be honest, this is absolutely 100% to minimize the horrors of sexual assault.

And also, you often seen this? Do tell how you are so frequently exposed to young people reporting non-consensual sex in the early morning.

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I also would like to know more about this claim, because in real life you hear people assert that these things happen a whole lot more than they actually do.

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Paranoid and delusional ex cop who hates anyone who dares believe in the first or fourteenth amendments.

Pay him no mind.

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I get the impression that O Fish L is / was in law enforcement.

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I have no doubt that he blew off plenty of rape victims during his career by assuming that they were suffering from morning-after regrets.

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I love the way that "I was drunk and some guy raped me" becomes "I have morning after regrets" to some people.

Wait, did I say love? I mean disgusted.

If booze is involved there can be no consent. Regrets don't factor into it except perhaps in the mind of the accused.

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Do you really hold that belief?

By that logic their are probably tens of thousands of sexual assaults/rapes happening on a given night in our fair city.

Yes, I understand that people shouldn't prey on inebriated victims, but it's probably a pretty high percentage of first time encounters that involve a minimum of a drink per person, right?

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Yes, I think one beer should be enough to consider someone unable to give consent. Now, a single beer isn't going to last that long (1-2 hours?) so if the woman has a beer at 10pm and you're hitting the sack at midnight and she is still fully consenting all is good.

But if you're a college kid and serve someone a beer then get down to work 20-30 minutes later, yes, this is grounds for rape. People react differently to alcohol and no one should assume that "just one beer" isn't impairing judgement for either of the groups.

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And if you both drank the beer, you have raped each other and will be prosecuted as co-defendants.

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If we split a beer even a lightweight is good to go after 20 minutes. That's a pretty lame party if someone breaks out a single Miller High Life and everyone takes a swig.

But seriously, there is some precedent for when both parties are impaired, correct? I'm sure plenty of guys have also been drunk when they raped a girl (perhaps why they thought it was OK) but that hardly makes it acceptable.

And I do think the same is true with women -- it's less common but it's possible for a woman to get a guy into a state where he can not (and should not) give consent. Rape isn't just physically overpowering someone.

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but I couldn't disagree more.

There is a line, but I'll be damned if it would ever make sense that this line was "stone cold sober."

It doesn't give either party enough responsibility for their actions.

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Are you saying that if one of the parties had just one beer, all sex would be out of bounds?

Sure, I am going to an extreme, but how would one differentiate between buzzed and drunk? And yes, if one of the parties is stumbling while walking, that is probably a good sign, and obviously if she passes out, that's a no fly zone, but still.

(this is not to take an opinion on this case. I know nothing about it other than what was in the press, which is very little.)

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“The third prong which the Commonwealth must prove beyond a reasonable doubt, to make out the crime of rape, is that the defendant knew, or in the alternative, he reasonably should have known that [the victim] was impaired, to the point that she was incapable of giving consent.

Comm vs. Mountry (2012)

And this goes back to 1870 when the court actually first used this language:

This court concluded that at a rape trial, an instruction to the jury concerning the complainant's capacity to consent should be given where the evidence would support a finding that because of the consumption of drugs or alcohol or for some other reason (for example, sleep, unconsciousness, mental retardation, or helplessness), the complainant was so impaired as to be incapable of consenting to intercourse; further, if the jury find that the Commonwealth has proved beyond a reasonable doubt the complainant's incapacity according to this standard, that finding satisfies the element of lack of consent, and as a corollary, the Commonwealth need prove only the amount of force necessary to accomplish intercourse [590-592], and the fact that the defendant knew or should have known that the complainant's condition rendered the complainant incapable of consent [592-595]. SPINA, J., concur-ring in part and dissenting in part, with whom Cowan, J., joined.

Comm vs. Burke (1890)
http://masscases.com/cases/sjc/105/105mass376.html

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But not what BosDog is advocating.

I do want to make the point (not to you, but in general) that somehow there has been an assumption that the victim met the assailant beforehand. There is always a chance that this was what some might call a standard sexual assault. Just saying.

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I'm saying he is wrong, and that there is a standard that the courts have been going by for a long time now. That is all.

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be honest, this is absolutely 100% to minimize the horrors of sexual assault.

And also, you often seen this? Do tell how you are so frequently exposed to young people reporting non-consensual sex in the early morning.

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be honest, this is absolutely 100% to minimize the horrors of sexual assault.

And also, you often seen this? Do tell how you are so frequently exposed to young people reporting non-consensual sex in the early morning.

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be honest, this is absolutely 100% to minimize the horrors of sexual assault.

And also, you often seen this? Do tell how you are so frequently exposed to young people reporting non-consensual sex in the early morning.

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be honest, this is absolutely 100% to minimize the horrors of sexual assault.

And also, you often seen this? Do tell how you are so frequently exposed to young people reporting non-consensual sex in the early morning.

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be honest, this is absolutely 100% to minimize the horrors of sexual assault.

And also, you often seen this? Do tell how you are so frequently exposed to young people reporting non-consensual sex in the early morning.

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There's not enough information to draw that type of conclusion. A lot of other things could have transpired in between the event and the notification: period of unconsciousness, medical treatment, police activity, etc.

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I got you the first time, pierce. Although retired, this was not an unusual occurrence during my career. Not just at colleges but consensual bar/nightclub hookups that wound up at some young person's apartment and led to a sexual assault claim later. I'm told by active Detectives who handle these matters that it's far more prevalent now. In fact, a good Sexual Assault Investigator and ADA will make it clear to a victim that there are serious hurdles in prosecuting such a case. It's all over Google too, if you search "morning after regrets sexual assault" a number of colleges and others post about it. Again, not saying that's what happened here but interested in outcome.

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In my experience, biased investigators who intimidate rape victims into backing off a claim and who then use the fact that the victim backed off as proof of their biases are more common than women who file sexual assault claims over a silly hookup. Really, I don't even know why so many people still subscribe to this narrative. This isn't the 50s.

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Although O-Fish may be out of line with his baseless accusations this early in an investigation with so little information available to us, it is not uncommon for sexual assault victims to later recant their stories after a drunken night. And it isn't because investigators are biased and/or intimidate victims (there is really no motivation to ever do that anyway).

What do the 1950's have to do with it? Today those who make up the claims are usually disproven because of cameras/texts and other modern tech advances.

What is your experience may I ask? Since you seem to know these "biased investigators".

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I wish it was the 50s.

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good god.

Sometimes sexual assault victims don't even want to go to the police (I dont know, maybe because too many officers are like you) and need to be encouraged. That might account for the lapse in time. Or you could just make assumptions about the woman. That sounds like some good policing.

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I have no problem with the time frame on this. Very common for sexual assault victims to report these crimes hours even days after they happen.

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our esteemed self-appointed law enforcement spokesperson.

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In my first post, I said that there could be many reasons for the delay in reporting. In mentioning "morning after regret," I also made clear twice that I'm not suggesting that is the case here. Anyone with Trial Court experience knows that these issues will be raised if this case ever goes to a 12 person jury in Suffolk Superior.

In an unrelated local case, two seasoned Sexual Assault Detectives (one female, one male) told me that a young woman claimed a man she barely knew showed up randomly at her apartment late at night and raped her. She had a partial name and Detectives quickly tracked him down. Although he had no record, they were about to arrest him. Under MA Law a victim always has veracity unless shown otherwise, so they were taking her word. The man had a different story. Out at a local bar, he saw the woman by coincidence and she was immediately "all over" him, demanding that he come over for sex. Detectives seized the bar video and obtained important statements from independent witnesses, all more than corroborating the man's story. When shown the video and statements, the woman admitted she had been drinking all day, blacked out and really had no recollection of what happened, just that she woke up with this man in her bed. Minus the video and statements, the man would likely be awaiting a Superior Court Trial and 20 year sentence.

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So all women are liars. Classic anecdote pretending to be fact.

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but sober enough to consent to sex? That is considered to legally be rape in a lot of places as it should be.

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and thus she raped him. Otherwise, if he thought the union was in any way non-consensual, would he be there when she woke up?

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The physiology doesn't work that way.

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if you're surprised that Markk doesn't know how an erection works.

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Another term for impaired judgement, but not to the level of complete physical impairment (and who is so backwards to think sex is limited to penile intercourse?). Impaired judgement is impaired enough to be considered being raped these days. After some sort of physical consummation, the consumed beverages could have been fully absorbed and he could have then passed out or fallen asleep. In any case, staying the night usually isn't what rapists have planned.

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Your thesis that a man must be conscious to be erect is easily disproven and demonstrates a sad lack of experience on your part.

Ask your mommy and daddy about this.

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If she was initially "all over him" but then changed her mind, and he still had sex with her, it's rape. If she blacked out after drinking, she wasn't able to consent, and it's still rape. If the detectives treated it any differently, they fucked up.

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Doesn't everybody's laptop have a camera now? Roll tape before you venture out to drink. Get the non-consent on tape if you bring a man home.*

*Yes, I know that men should also stop being rapists.

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Your confusion here is a big part of the problem. Yes means yes. Otherwise, no.

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Since it is 2015 I would wager that nobody "rolls tape" anymore.
Unless you have some sort of hipster retro roommate who is into reel to reel taping or has a camera that takes a Betamax tape!

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And how, exactly, are you supposed to do that, Mr. Genius? "Hold on just a sec. I need to turn my laptop camera on before you rape me. OK, all set. Thanks."

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"Roll tape before you go out."

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Because I'm sure all these BU students have unlimited hard drive space to shoot hours and hours of "dead air" before they happen to come home (assuming they don't go to their partner's place). And I assume they'll have one in every room, in case their date for the night decides to get frisky on the living room couch, or in the kitchen...

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Cuz if this got to be a popular habit, you know someone would hack and monetize it.

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There was a good editorial in the Daily Free Press a few weeks ago, about administrators' response to sexual assault on campus:

That is, instead of addressing rape culture and issues of consent, the administration folds their hands and intends instead to address alcohol use while continuing to refer all criticism to the Sexual Assault Response & Prevention Center. Specifically, the report holds that in response to the survey, BU must “create ways to inspire students to be actively engaged in coming to terms with sexual assault,” and “rigorously engage the factor of alcohol use in relation to sexual assault and sexual misconduct.”

First off, to be absolutely clear, no one should ever have to “come to terms” with sexual assault. This asinine comment is exactly what continues to further rape culture in this country and at this school. Secondly, alcohol doesn’t remove the need for consent. It doesn’t excuse this inexcusable behavior, and by perpetuating this standard for conduct, BU is blaming victims for their assaults by insinuating that rape is caused by intoxication. But just as guns do not kill people, alcohol does not commit rape. Plain and simple.

By the way, all the rape apologists here can jump off a roof.

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for sure, but Colleges are in a tough position as well. If they discipline a student for committing a sexual assault and a court finds the suspect not guilty, the college gets sued. If the victim does not get fair treatment, the college gets sued.

Real ugly situation for everyone involved, especially the victims, but sometimes others as well.

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How often do campus rape cases even make it to trial, though? I'm afraid I don't have statistics at hand, but it seems to me - anecdotally, anyway - that these cases are usually dealt with internally, if at all. Besides, even if it did make it to trial, aren't false allegations of sexual assault incredibly rare? Not that they don't happen, but they don't happen nearly as often as actual sexual assaults.

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False allegations are not common, but I've seen plenty of them to say they aren't rare either. Some stats have them about 8% (out of all sexual assaults), but those stats have been questioned as well.

The messy issue with college rapes is that sometimes the student doesn't want to report it to the police, but they do report it to the school. Now the school knows they have an accused rapist in their student body, so they have to do something about that too. Then it is up to the victim to produce the evidence. Then there are all the legal ramifications. Is there a hearing? Does the victim and suspect have the right to have a lawyer there? Who runs the hearing? When are the police notified? If the victim doesn't attend the hearing, does the suspect get to stay in school? Is the school liable for the next rape the suspect commits if he stays? Is the school liable if they kick out the student and the victim later is proven wrong? It are the administrative issues that seem to be the most damaging to the victim and process in general.

And I don't know the stat off hand, but there are basically two types of campus rapes, the alcohol consent rape, and the criminal prowler sneaking into rooms at night rape. You see the alcohol consent rapes are much more common on campuses, and the other aggrevated rapes are more common outside of campuses.

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I haven't seen any rape apologists here, just a few realists. Other than murder, making an arrest for rape or a even an old warrant charging rape brought the most job satisfaction.

On a day off, go to the Superior Court in any County and watch a trial. Don't forget, the prosecution needs all twelve jurors to conclude beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty as charged. It's a very high standard.

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Don't forget, the prosecution needs all twelve jurors to conclude beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty as charged

Gee, and why do you suppose that is so difficult? Maybe because the first thing out of some shithead's mouth is "Morning after regrets?"

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Gee, and why do you suppose that is so difficult? Maybe because the first thing out of some shithead's mouth is "Morning after regrets?"

No. Just experience that even the worst defense attorney will ask serious questions of both the arresting officer and the victim on the Superior Court witness stand. I lost a few cases in District Court but never in Superior. State Prison is serious and only the Superior Court can send you there.

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and the issue is that, in order to prosecute people, there needs to be evidence.

Many sexual assaults, even rapes, no matter how upsetting and scary to the victim, don't have evidence that meets the amount of evidence needed to prosecute. Sexual activity typically happens in private, so there's no witnesses by nature, and if the assault in question occurs after or during some consensual sexual activity (ex: the victim was OK with kissing but not fondling, the victim was OK with manual or oral but not vaginal intercourse, the victim consented to vaginal but halfway through asked him to stop and he did not, the victim waited two weeks and did laundry before reporting) it's going to be very hard to prove via the hard evidence needed to get a prosecution.

By all means victims should report, but the inherent murky nature of human sexual contact, good and bad, means that convictions in gray-area cases aren't going to happen. It's unfortunate, but it's something victims need to understand before agreeing to a years-long trial.

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Headline: Local Woman Raped
Internet Commenter: BUT WAIT WHAT IF SHE WASN'T REALLY

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and, coming from a (thankfully) former officer is exactly why women don't want to go to the police.

because you know the police are going to question your morals and wonder "but do you think maybe you really did ask for it, sweetie? maybe were you just kind of drunk? did you do something to make him think that you wanted it?"

you're doubting yourself in the first place, questioning your own memory, wondering where things went wrong. and then to have the authority figure tasked with helping you pile onto that.. its revictimizing. and the police clearly don't care. because paperwork is hard and women are liars.

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And that isn't what he is saying either. You watch too many movies, and O-fish is right about your reading comprehension skills. He isn't talking about how he would have conducted an investigation, or how sexual assault investigations are conducted. He is saying what actually happens, which is completely separate from the actual investigation.

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what IF she really wasn't? There's extensive statistics, research and antidoteal evidence that does indeed show false charges of rape and secual assault, especially among young people in places like college dorms, is commonplace. Anyone, a woman, a man, anyone, can make a claim that they were sexually assaulted, und unless there's other viable evidence to back up that claim, what are people supposed to think? Dates, hook ups, alcohol and drugs use can routinely end up with regrets, and some mentally unstable people will claim things like sexual assault because they actually crave attention and drama. If there weren't so many false charges (boy-girl who cried wolf) many people would be less jaded and blase.

Same with many claims by people say they were victims of a 'bias' crime, either actual assault or graffiti, and so-on. Many of those also end up being untrue, made up.

It's the same with

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"Extensive statistics" that false rape claims are "commonplace"? Please post them here.

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And even if there was some sort of "number", it wouldn't really matter because of all the assaults that don't get reported.

Although I will confirm that I have seen many victims either recant their stories or are forced to after evidence arises that would disprove their initial claims.

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Recanting is not the same as saying it didn't happen. Recanting can mean that the victim realizes that the police aren't going to do jack shit for her while the rapist is in a position to make her life miserable.

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I dunno about that one. When a woman says she is raped, or touched by another man, the police will make an arrest pretty much 100% of the time right off the bat. Not many women recant and say nothing happened because they don't think the police will do anything after they already reported it (when many times someone else reports it other than the victim)

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BU must “create ways to inspire students to be actively engaged in coming to terms with sexual assault,”

First off, to be absolutely clear, no one should ever have to “come to terms” with sexual assault.

I read that quote about coming to terms with sexual assault as meaning, "acknowledge that it is real, that it happens, that the perp might well be a classmate, and that something needs to be done about it at a very fundamental level." The student body needs to look in the mirror and say, "We've seen the rapist and it is us."

So I think it's very much correct to say that the students need to be actively engaged in coming to terms with sexual assault.

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They're weasel words, whether you grant them the meaning you suggest or the more likely meaning: "deal with it, kiddos."

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They're weasel words,

I couldn't disagree more. Coming to terms with the fact that there is a systemic problem, rather than continuing to sweep it under the rug, is exactly what is called for here.

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...wasn't there a Simpsons episode where Lisa (I think) wants to go see a play about "people coming to terms with things"? It's such a vague, meaningless expression. If BU administrators had said, "You students need to take a long look at yourselves, because YOU'RE the ones doing this," that would at least be more precise (if more likely to provoke a flurry of lawsuits). If they had said, "We're going to be much more aggressive in our investigation and punishment of students who commit sexual assault, and we're going to work harder on our efforts to prevent the crime in the first place," that would be...well, too much to hope for, frankly, but we can dream.

But I tend to disagree with your reading: I don't think they meant "students, heal thyself." I think they meant that students have to deal with it, as they deal with all inevitabilities. Honestly, considering how tone-deaf other pronouncements have been from BU's higher-up administration, I'm much less inclined to give them any sort of benefit of the doubt here.

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Honestly, considering how tone-deaf other pronouncements have been from BU's higher-up administration, I'm much less inclined to give them any sort of benefit of the doubt here.

Fair enuff for sure.

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God Jesus. In reading some of these comments there is no wonder why rape victims don't report to the police or anyone for that matter.

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Oddly, no false police report charges are being filed against the 18 year old women.
http://www.wcvb.com/news/bridgewater-state-university-says-sexual-assaul...

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