The Notorious Princeton Mom Thinks It’s Only Rape If the Attacker Uses a Gun or a Knife

Author Susan Patton, aka the “Princeton Mom,” is jumping into the national discussion about campus sexual assault, telling CNN’s Carol Costello that the current definition of rape has been warped into nebulous exaggeration.

“[It] is no longer when a woman is violated at the point of a gun or a knife,” Patton explained. “We’re now identifying as rape what really is a clumsy hookup melodrama or a fumbled attempt at a kiss or caress.”

Patton’s comments were prompted by a new report from the Bureau of Justice Statistics showing that only one in ten sexual assault assailments use weapons and 80 percent of victims are familiar with their attackers. She basically depicts these situations as inebriated, bad choices between two friends, and nothing more.

Patton goes on to describe most assaults as “learning experiences” and wonders, “why do you not just get up and leave? Or why do you not, as a woman, tell a man who’s making advances that, ‘You know what? Stop, leave.’”

It’s sad to say, but Patton’s views are nothing out of the ordinary, despite the fact one in five undergraduate women experience sexual assault in college. But in light of the recent controversy ignited by Rolling Stone’s UVA story and mounting rape allegations against Bill Cosby, Patton’s opinions are especially obnoxious.

Watch and behold a perfect example of how not to talk about rape:

 

 

 

THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

payment methods

THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate