February 20, 2019

The Ongoing Rape of Kesha

It takes bravery to step forward and speak about rape. A type of bravery that only those who have experienced it can truly understand. People think rape is about sex, but it is about violence, power, control, and humiliation. Whether you are aware of what is happening to you or not, rape is never the fault of the person being raped. Ever.

Blame is often placed on the victim, which is why rape is usually not reported. Rape can be debilitating to a spirit and while one can survive and thrive, rape permanently scars a soul in haunting ways. It may not impact someone daily, but it can not only shape a life, but in unimaginable and heartbreaking cases, define one.

The stigma of rape is so terrifying, the decision to keep quiet and suffer in silence can be less painful than speaking out and seeking justice. We hear about rape in the news regularly, but this week the discussion of rape is on the front pages because it was not a nameless person saying she was raped, but rather a celebrity.

Kesha Rose Sebert is a successful performer who simply goes by Kesha. Kesha is not a one hit wonder. She is a singer and songwriter who has sold 60 million records. She's not a stupid girl. She received an almost perfect SAT score and was offered a full scholarship to Barnard College, but she chose to pursue a career in music.

Kesha is talented, controversial, and a rape survivor. Allegedly raped by her music producer, she filed a lawsuit to get out of her contract with this man and his company. Her request was denied. She was ordered by the court to honor her contact. She was essentially told her rape is inconsequential and she needs to be quiet and go back to work.

The ruling of this judge is not only heartbreaking for Kesha, but heartbreaking for victims of rape who are teetering on the fence as to whether or not to report their assault. It sends a powerful message that breaks my heart and makes me very angry. I do not know Kesha, but I believe her, support her, pray for her, and applaud her bravery.

Some will say this isn’t about rape, but rather a woman wanting out of a contract and saying whatever is needed to get out. They will suggest this is feminism, or just a woman “changing her mind” and “regretting” the contract she signed. I would shake my head because that sounds like rape cases heard worldwide and it is shameful.

Kesha will forever be judged by coming forward, and I hope she will continue to be brave and not back down from her truth. She will be humiliated, scared, anxious, and exhausted. She will be praised, admired, respected, and loved. I did not know much about Kesha before this week, but today I am on her side and pray she remains strong and remembers to always keep the faith.