Stanford athlete arrested under suspicion of rape

A Stanford athlete’s arrest is a prime reminder that athletes, even exemplary ones, are still capable of being less than human.

Brock Allen Turner, a supposed star for the Stanford swim team, has been arrested in connection to the raping of an unconscious woman on the morning of Jan. 18. Turner, who was detained by two cyclists while trying to flee the scene of the crime, has since withdrawn as a student of Stanford and has no lasting connections to the college. To add insult to injury, Turner was a heavily scouted prospect for the Stanford swim team.

More often than not we see instances of athletes, in particular those dubbed as “stars” in their respective field, debasing themselves by committing crimes that are both appalling and disgusting. Obviously this is not the case with all major athletes, as there are numerous examples of men and women in the highest reaches of sports that do not feel the need to take advantage of those around them, but sadly there are exceptions to this fact.

This case will bring to light the fact that sexual assaults are a growing epidemic in and around college campuses, especially since this crime was perpetrated by a student from the prestigious Stanford campus. It is no secret that colleges across the country are under heavy scrutiny when it comes to such acts of violence, and many people don’t think that such cases are being taken seriously enough when compared to other acts of violence.

The real question is this: What if Turner hadn’t been caught by those two passing cyclists? Would this case be treated with any sense of importance, or simply swept under the proverbial rug as rape cases seem to be handled at other colleges across the country? This case is possibly one of the largest examples of California’s new “yes means yes” law, which was created for college campuses. Surprisingly this law does not seem to affect legislation in regards to acts of sexual violence. We all need to remember one simple fact when it comes to athletes: They are human beings, just like us, and capable of very horrible acts.


Update: this article has been updated with the latest version available. 2/2/2015 1:05 p.m.