A 16-year-old-girl in Houston, Texas says that she was sexually assaulted by someone who she thought was a friend while recently attending a party at a classmate’s home. Jada says that not only was she raped, but the perpetrators also took photos of her as she laid unconscious and posted them online.
According to Jada she was attending a party when someone gave her a glass of punch which she now believes was spiked. The drink concoction caused her to lose consciousness, and the rest of the night is a blur to her. She has no memory of what happened after she passed out, but she found out about her assault from friends who began to see evidence of the assault on their social networks.
The website Think Progress reports on how hings got worse for Jada when other teens began to mock the situation by posting pictures of themselves laying down in a pose similar to that of Jada’s unconscious body after she was attacked. The teens also created the hashtag #jadapose in an effort to make the pictures go viral and spread across the internet. She told her story to Houston TV Station KHOU and other local media outlets and requested that her identity not be withheld.
Jada now feels that she has nothing to hide because everyone has seen her face and body. Her mother told KHOU “No one’s daughter deserved this. No human being deserved this.”
There seems to be many similarities in this story and the case of the two teenage boys in Steubenville, Ohio who were convicted of rape charges last year for penetrating a teenage girl while she was unconscious and disseminating pornographic pictures of her after the attack. Pictures and video of the attack were also posted on Instagram and Youtube. In one of the videos an attacker is seen saying that the young girl was “deader than Trayvon Martin”
With these types of incidents becoming more common, I think its time for parents to have several conversations with our children. We need to start having open and honest talks with out children about sexual assault and rape. It needs to be explained to them that the type of behavior that has been exhibited by the boys in these two cases is not acceptable and will not be tolerated. Not only does no mean no, someone’s inability to consent to a sexual act also means NO. Our boys need to know that it is not okay to get someone intoxicated and then take advantage of them. The thought of it is sickening, and as parents we can not stand around while these kids continue to to this, because if we do it makes us just as guilty as they are. These actions are criminal, and down right disgusting. There also needs to be continued conversations between parents and kids about how what they do and say on social media not only affects their lives and their futures, but there are also consequences for others as well. There are too many things being done on social networks by our children that are simply for the purpose of gaining attention for the moment. We have to instill a mentality in them that focuses on building success for the future.
Someone needs to stand up for these victims. These young ladies not only have to deal with the trauma of being sexually assaulted, but they also have go through the insensitive cyber bullying acts by people who think that rape is amusing. Each time someone posts a picture using the #jadapose caption they are forcing this young lady to relive what could very well have been the worst night of her life. Has our society become that desensitized to violence and sex crimes that we now think it is okay for us to make fun of the victims? Have we fallen so far from standing with morals and integrity that we are going to allow rapists to be glorified and imitated by people who don’t have a clue as to what damage they are doing to their victims?
As parents I think we should all stand with Jada in solidarity and fight these types of wicked crimes that are becoming all too common in our society. If we don’t get out and speak up for the children being victimized by these predators, who will?