Name Rape Is A Form Of Sexual Abuse

 

“The rape of a name can be as vicious a crime and as destructive an act as the rape of a body. Sometimes the rape of a body is worse, sometimes the rape of a name is worse. But they are both rapes. And morally likening the two is in no way meant to lessen the horror of rape; it is meant only to heighten awareness of the horror of intentionally destroying the name of an innocent person.” — Dennis Prager

A growing problem that we are facing today is how to deal with false sexual complaints, namely because the general mood of the liberal culture assumes that people claiming victimhood do not lie. However, there are new bodies of literature pointing to the prevalence of false sexual complaints made by women.  Once these complaints are made, the falsely accused person is branded for life as a pedophile, rapist or child molestor and the damage, on every level — personal, emotional, spiritual, financial, physical — is almost impossible to calculate.

Early feminists pointed out that rape is not merely a physical act, it’s a fundamental degradation of another human being. In his article, The Rape Of A Name Is Also Rape, Dennis Prager describes the pain suffered by men who have been falsely accused of sexual assault.  We tend to associate ‘rape’ with sexual assault to a woman but Prager challenges women to broaden their association with the term: If you are a woman and this seems far-fetched, imagine that a man you love — such as your father, brother, husband or son — were publicly accused of a rape he had not committed. Imagine the pain he and your family would endure. Why is that pain not comparable to the pain suffered by at least some women who are raped?”

Forty years ago, Raymond Donovan, secretary of labor in the Reagan administration asked “Which office do I go to to get my reputation back?”, after being acquitted for all charges of larceny and fraud. Where does one go, Prager asks, after having one’s reputation unjustly ruined?

Now add to the equation, the Internet.

Back then, there was no internet.  Today, when false sexual claims appear on the internet, the speed with which they spread across the multitude of social platforms can be, and is, devastating to the falsely accused especially when the false sexual claim is not stated as an accusation, but as a fact.  
Consider as well, that Google picks up that false information (posts, articles, comments, videos etc…) with its algorithms and when someone performs a search for the falsely accused’s name they will immediately see those posts in their results.  The damaging effects are compounded by the fact that information lives on the internet forever, meaning that the falsely accused will never be totally free of an undeserved reputation.

About the author

Lisa Engles

Engagement Marketing Strategist, Social Activist. Committed to harnessing digital potential in service of human, social and planetary potential. Devoted mother and lover of the good, the true and the beautiful.