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This past Friday, my opponent made a controversial comment about a child rape victim.

While trying to defend his mishandling of a case involving a 15-year-old girl who was abused repeatedly over the course of years by an adult man, sitting State Attorney Mark Ober downplayed the severity of the crimes, saying: “She was with him voluntarily.  She flew to him”.

Besides the initial cringe we all experience hearing that, here are some things to consider:

1.     This victim was raped. Suggesting that she shares the blame is the definition of an unacceptable rape culture.

2.     This isn’t Romeo and Juliet. The victim was repeatedly abused and brainwashed to the point that she submitted to his demands because she feared the consequences of disobeying him.

3.     This is a child. Any rational person will tell you that a child cannot legally consent to sex with an adult.

4.     This is why victims are often too scared to come forward. How many young girls or women will hear Ober’s comments on rape and conclude that the State Attorney won’t believe them or will blame them for being victimized?

Take a look at how the victim’s mother describes what happened to her daughter, and compare it to what our State Attorney said.  Then, decide for yourself.

Needless to say, Mark Ober’s comments show just how out of touch he is. Things won’t change until we demand action.

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