– Cruz Serrano
Patrick Kane is not a victim. Although to me this seems obvious, I’ve noticed that some people need to be reminded. The sentiment of “poor Patty” or “I hope Kane beats this” shows that individuals forget that sexual assault is a heinous crime. There is a victim here, and it is not Kane. By rooting for Kane or feeling bad for him in this case, an individual is inherently rooting against the alleged victim. And even if Kane ‘beats’ the charge by settling, it is important to remember this is not a sign of innocence. Patrick Kane is not a victim.
Cases like this are all too familiar. Ben Roethlisberger continues to play football even though he has been accused of rape twice, in one case settling with the victim. Rather than assuming that the accusers take settlements because they are after the money, maybe it makes more sense that those who perpetuate the assault are trying to save face by not letting the case go to open court, where they can be open to criminal charges. More so, maybe the victims are even more afraid of open court, where victims are often made to look like culprits. It is often suggested that by acting a certain way or dressing a certain way women are “asking for it.” Also the stigma that follows rape cases is something follows a victim for their entire life. So rather than entering the court systems that continues to allow this type of injustice, maybe the victims decide it is easier to settle.
Maybe Patrick Kane is innocent, maybe it was consensual sex, and maybe he was wrongfully accused. That doesn’t matter at this point. What matters is the treatment of the victim, and the fact that she deserves the benefit of the doubt, not Kane. By assuming rapists are innocent, we continue perpetuate stigmas of rape, and we continue to make it harder for victims of rape to come forward. This is not an issue that is isolated to sports, however it is magnified with the amount attention surrounding the sports world. And even with the attention on the sports world, it’s baffling how fast sexual assault charges against athletes can be forgotten. Roethlisberger, Mike Tyson, Kobe Bryant and others have been accused of sexual assault with little to no effect on their careers.
It is important to make the distinction between being accused of sexual assault and being convicted. Although Kane has been accused and there is an ongoing investigation, he has not been proven to be guilty. If the rape accusation turns out to be unsubstantiated, it can and will have a huge negative impact on Kane’s life and career. However, I think the impact of a rape on the life of a young woman is much worse. The idea of guilt brings me to another point: although Kane, in legal terms is innocent until proven guilty, it shouldn’t necessarily apply to public perception. The accusation of rape is a serious one, and to assume that Kane is innocent until proven otherwise is foolish and dangerous.
This is not an attempt to demean Patrick Kane. For the sake of the victim and the victim alone I hope this was nothing more than a misunderstanding. However, it is important to remember the victims in these situations, because all too often in sexual assault cases the victims are the ones that are blamed. Sexual assault is not an accusation to be taken lightly, or to be joked about. Kane’s status as a local hero in the Buffalo area, his money, and his persona do not in some way remove him from the possibility of being a sexual predator. To in any way imply that Patrick Kane ‘doesn’t have to rape someone’ because of his money and fame is completely false and misguided. And to assume that a woman may be throwing around these accusations because she wants money is a dangerous assumption that in turn allows celebrities to get away with sexual assault. So once again I remind you, Patrick Kane is not a victim.
– Cruz Serrano (@cruzin_usa)