For the second time in two weeks, I watched a pilot of television show that contained a violent rape of a female character. With the very current news events surrounding the topic (see Steubenville), it seems like day in and day out, we are inundated with horrific stories of the rape of women worldwide. And what do we do with it? Turn it into “entertainment” on some of TVs most watched shows.

I can hear the producer’s reasoning’s now:
“it gives (blank) motive for revenge”

“it makes (blank) stronger and defines her personality”

and probably and even longer list of trivial excuses that do not make it acceptable.

The number of rapes and crimes against women that happen on yearly basis is disgusting. And to think that almost 80% of rapes are never even reported. So how are we protecting the women in our country, or in our world? By trivializing the act on a primetime television show?

What is the point of desensitizing people to rape without truth of the consequences that are lifelong for the victim? In real life, you don’t get to become a gun toting Russian Spy (see The Americans) or own a creepy hotel with your son (see Bates Hotel) after rape. Or do you? Because it seems to me that more women than we are being honest about are being sexually assaulted in some way in this country on a daily basis and are the mothers, daughters, sisters, and friends that we all have. But are we talking about it? Or just splashing it across the screen for ratings?

It seems so hypocritical that Hollywood would show an act like this on a television show, when we live in a country that classifies nudity as NC-17. We are teaching our children that sex is evil, bad and a violent act, but don’t you dare look at your body, because you should be ashamed of it.


Ahimsa is a small piece of the puzzle that is missing. Even though MANY pieces are missing, this idea of non-violence is not present. Non-violence to our selves, to our peers, to all of those we reach and touch with our art or work. Why can’t we have strong female characters? Because even the ones you think are badass now are still being tossed around by men on TV.

I don’t know what the fix is, but I am more than open to ideas and suggestions. As of right now, I am annoyed that this has become the norm. That finding a rape on TV is as easy as flipping to a show on A&E at 10pm. This is not about naiveté – I am not saying that we need to keep everything squeaky clean, but when violence against women becomes so commonplace that it is even in our “entertainment” I think we have a serious issue as a society.