Judge In Rape Case: 'Why Couldn't You Just Keep Your Knees Together'

by Sarah Hosseini
Originally Published: 
Image via CNN

Judge Robin Camp sparks outrage and calls for removal

Canadian federal judge, Robin Camp, is facing possible removal after making inappropriate and insensitive (read: fucking sick) comments during a 2014 rape trial. The alleged victim in the case is a 19-year old woman who says she was raped over a bathroom sink at a house party. Camp made several deeply disturbing comments during the trial such as the following directed towards the alleged rape victim: ‘Why couldn’t you just keep your knees together?’ CNN reports.

Rage. Visceral rage that makes us want to throw up is what we feel when we hear this. The very fact that a woman could go through something as horrific and traumatic as rape, report it and then be told it’s her fault is disgusting, deplorable and utterly reprehensible.

CNN host Ashleigh Banfield could hardly contain her shock and disgust while reading Camp’s comments in this video.

The POS judge then suggested to the woman that if she “skews her pelvis” she could prevent rape. Camp asked why she didn’t “just sink [her] bottom into the basin so [her alleged rapist] couldn’t penetrate [her].”

A rape victim can prevent their own rape? Let us school you judge, rape is forced. A rapist irreversibly injures their victim physically and emotionally. It is violent. And it is criminal. The judge re-victimized this woman in the most heinous way and proved exactly why rape victims don’t come forward. When they do speak out they’re called liars, they’re shamed and silenced and it has got to stop.

Camp also indicated that young women want to have sex, especially when they’re drunk according to the US News & World Report. How this narrative that drunk women like to have sex against their will got started, we will never know. But let us be clear, nothing, literally nothing, justifies rape ever. Ever. Victims are never responsible for their rapists actions or behaviors. Drinking alcohol or being drunk does not undo, invalidate, void or cancel out the need for consent.

The accused man in the case was acquitted, yes acquitted, and Camp reportedly had some advice for him too:”Tell your friends, your male friends, that they have to be far more gentle with women. They have to be far more patient. And they have to be very careful. To protect themselves, they have to be very careful.” Gross.

The verdict was appealed and overturned and there is a new trial in November. And while that is good news it doesn’t undo the damage done by the judge. Camp reportedly received sexual violence education and counseling after the case and has since apologized according to the US News & World Report.

Camp is also being investigated by a judicial committee in Canada and will go before members next week, where he’ll hopefully lose his job. Meanwhile, we have to keep crusading against rape culture.

We can fight to take the bench away from him, strip him of his honors and make sure he never does this to another human being again by writing and/or supporting petitions for his removal. We can send the message that this erroneous and sick line of thinking in regards to rape will not be tolerated. We can donate our time and money to groups that fight against sexual violence and provide support to survivors like Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) and The National Women’s Law Center (NWLC).

We can talk about rape and consent with our sons and our daughters. We can send the message that rape is never justified, and absolute consent for everything with our bodies is absolutely vital. If we don’t make a commitment to having these conversations we are perpetuating and holding up the status quo. Our kids deserve better than that. We deserve better than that. We deserve and demand justice.

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