Please use the box below to make any public comments or suggestions. You may also contact us by email at

Thank you  – The USMVAW Team

3 Responses to “Comments & Suggestions”

  1. Cynthia Ferguson Says:

    I think it is important to realize that sexual assault is a violence issue, and it affects community/public health. It is not solely a women’s issue. It affects men and women, children and the elderly, as well as the disabled. When you make it a “women’s issue” you actually belittle the crime.

    As an expert in sexual assault issues and in issues of violence both in the U.S. and around the globe, I encourage web your page/blog to take a more rounded look at experiences of violence in the military, and focus on all military members who may experience victimization, not solely women. Thank you.

    1. admin Says:

      Thank you for your comments and ideas. Please note that the website focuses on military violence against women, and our interest is in all types of violence, including battery, sexual assault and rape, and interpersonal and emotional abuse. There is more information about sexual abuse, specifically, in the news now because the general public, the press, and some Congressional leaders are just beginning to register that it is a serious problem of epidemic proportions.

      While I agree with you that sexual assault is about violence and control, and that it affects community and public health in significant ways, it is also a very gendered phenomenon in many, many cases. All studies indicate that the overwhelming majority of victims or survivors of sexual assault are women and girls. Certainly men and boys have been, and continue to be, victims and survivors of rape and sexual assault, and these crimes are equally heinous. However, it is not accidental that so many of the victims and survivors are women/girls and so many of the perpetrators are men. When women are devalued, sexualized, and fetishized by the society (and certainly by military culture), and when patriarchal culture reinforces the notion that men exercise power and control, women are likely to be targets of sexual assault and rape. Note, for example, the work of Carol Burke (Camp All-American, Hanoi Jane, and the High and Tight: Gender, Folklore, and Changing Military Culture), Cynthia Enloe (all her books), and Helen Benedict (The Lonely Soldier: The Private War of Women Serving in Iraq).

      Our focus on women is intended to highlight that which the patriarchal culture would like to overlook or diminish: that violence against women is epidemic and supported in large part by military culture and the valorization of violent masculinity.

      I think the idea of starting a website that focuses on violence against men in the military, particularly sexual violation and emotional violence, is a splendid idea. It’s not the focus of our work, but we would welcome others to develop this important topic.

      Thank you for your comments,

      Linda Pershing
      Project Director

  2. Great site! Thank you so much for helping to get the word out. We need all of our voices to stop this!


    Joan and Brigid – Life after Military Sexual Trauma

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