14 year-old Glasgow girl raped on public transit and no one cares

*Trigger Warnings: Gang Rape, Public Assault*

News reports from Scotland share a story of a 14 year-old girl who was raped by 2 men. …On public transit. …While other passengers (and not to mention a driver) were present.

The article in Herald Scotland focuses mostly on the utter surprise of how something like this could happen “right here in good ol’ Glasgow” (which, ironically, lends itself to be the most crime-ridden city in all of Scotland). Not surprisingly, the article ignores the fact that a young woman’s life has been thrashed, slashed, and thrown to the trash for an indeterminate amount of time until she’s able to learn to overcome the terror, anxiety, and crippling emotional blows that come with being sexually violated – except for one edgewise quote from the presiding police officer who mentions the victim’s trauma. Thankfully, the editor took the liberty to frame the word “trauma” in oh-come-on-it-can’t-be-THAT-bad quotes to really nail home that we don’t actually need to be concerned about the victim.

And, of course, what would a misogynist, patriarchal society be if that was the ONLY issue here?

The two men who raped the 14 year old girl were “ejected near Queen’s Park at Pollokshaws Road at around 12.30am [two hours after committing the rape]” because “they are said to have become increasingly loud and were making lewd and crude comments to other passengers.”

The company says that the “driver was not aware of the assault [in spite of the bus being equipped with CCTV]. Unfortunately, the incident took place on the top deck of the bus and therefore out of our driver’s eyeline” but that “bus travel is an extremely safe form of transport,” as they’re apparently very well aware since they’re able to see all areas of the bus at any given time. 

This, however, is all secondary. Why are we concerned about the (now apparently questionable) safety of public transport and NOT the fact that a gang rape went unnoticed and/or uninterrupted by the other riders? Why are we not raising red flags over the fact that this happened in a culture where this sort of monstrous act is apparently acceptable to do in public; more acceptable, in fact, than being boisterous and lewd on a bus. And why in the HELL aren’t there discussions about ramping up awareness and visibility of these buses where blind spots in the CCTV angle are so wide that a young woman can be gang raped by 2 men for nearly a quarter of an hour without a single shred of visible evidence. This is absurd.

Where is the shameless pitch for a local rape victims support group in a city that already aids 20% of the entire country’s victims of sexual violence. WHERE IS EVEN A SUBTLE ALLUSION THAT THIS ISN’T THE ONLY RAPE THAT HAS EVER HAPPENED IN GLASGOW and that this isn’t just a one-in-one-trillion, rare as diamond occurrence that will never happen again in our lifetime? This is absolutely absurd.

Disclaimer: This post was written by a Feministing Community user and does not necessarily reflect the views of any Feministing columnist, editor, or executive director.

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