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Dan Gilmore / June 25, 2015

The Left Has Found Its 1 in 5 Rape Statistic

There it is: According to a recent University of Michigan survey, 22.5% of undergraduate women have experienced “some form of nonconsensual sexual behavior.” Bring out the pitchforks. Light the torches. But not so fast, writes Ashe Schow at the Washington Examiner, because that one-in-five statistic includes everything from women who said they were kissed without permission to victims of actual rape. “The surveyors then labeled those incidences as sexual assault, even though many would probably not fit the criminal definition of sexual assault,” Schow writes. “This means that the alarmist headline number — 1 in 5 — likely includes many students who don’t view themselves as victims and don’t believe they were sexually assaulted.” The one-in-five statistic is easy to remember, but no one knows what it means. This Michigan study says the number applies to just undergraduate women. When Barack Obama touted the statistic in a PSA at the Grammy Awards, that statistic applied to all American women and they were victims “of rape or attempted rape.” The problem is, it’s easy for the Left to throw out one statistic, but it takes time and attention to actually dig into the data to understand what it means. And, in the process, leftists demean the suffering of actual rape victims.

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