The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia


June 26, 2013


Even though Jay Rockefeller has announced his intentions to not seek re-election and retire in 2016, the senator from West Virginia is not shying away from important issues.

It’s alarming, and appalling, what is going on in the U.S. military in regard to sexual assaults and abuse.

And Rockefeller made it clear this week — it’s something that he detests as well.

“I’m sickened every time I hear a story of sexual intimidation and abuse, especially within military institutions that are supposed to be about following the law and upholding the moral fiber of our country,” Rockefeller said Monday. “We must have a zero tolerance policy for any of this cowardly and criminal behavior.”

There is a proposed bill being set forth to change the way these terrible acts are reported. Rockefeller pledged his support of the Combating Military Sexual Assault Act.

The men and women who choose to defend our country, many by putting their very lives at risk on the front lines, certainly deserve to do so in a manner that is free from harm caused by fellow service personnel.

And this is no small matter.

The statistics are disturbing.

Rockefeller quoted an anonymous survey conducted by the Department of Defense, there were some 19,000 cases of sexual assault in 2011. In 2012, a sharp rise — 37 percent, or about 26,000 reported assaults.

The DOD also noted that 20 percent of women in uniform complained of unwanted sexual contact.

How can the military continue to recruit in good faith, until this issue is resolved?

This issue is a black eye on the U.S. military, and the United States for that manner.

The world once looked to the U.S. as a beacon of hope, a land that promised freedom and liberty.

But with every issue like this that makes international news, Americans suffer, with evidence of decaying morals, indifference to common decency and upholding the law.

We’re better than that.

Our hope is that this bill will pass, and it will one day prevent heinous acts against our own servicemen and servicewomen.

And thanks to our leaders like Sen. Rockefeller who take a stand against this behavior, would-be offenders will perhaps be likely to think twice before acting, and pay for their crime if committed.

Text Only
  • Doughnut holes

    Annexation benefits outweigh the taxes

    July 29, 2014

  • The play’s the thing

    TWV twins reveal local riches that can’t be found anywhere else

    July 27, 2014

  • Primary care

    DHHR program weans folks away from the ER

    July 24, 2014

  • Rain? What Rain?

    Community still enjoys auto fair despite uncooperative weather

    July 23, 2014

  • Do tell

    It’s hard to keep a secret in today’s here-a-camera, there-a-camera, everywhere-a-camera world. Whatever one does that is embarrassing is immediately posted on YouTube, Facebook or other social media of choice.

    July 22, 2014

  • Juvenile justice

    West Virginia nearly doubled the rate it sent youths to juvenile facilities from 1997 to 2011, in contrast to declining rates of youthful incarceration elsewhere in the United States.

    July 20, 2014

  • Thumbs — Saturday, July 19, 2014

    July 19, 2014

  • Do something

     Johnstown police have charged three men in the brutal murder early Sunday of a city academy student.

    July 18, 2014

  • Showcase

    For White Sulphur Springs, there’s hardly enough time to catch a breath.

    July 17, 2014

  • Bon appetit

    Agriculture and farm products can help diversify state economy

    July 16, 2014