Commend U.S. Senate for Keeping Sexual Felons Out of the Military

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Target: Senator Barbara Boxer

Goal: Commend Senator Boxer and the U.S. Senate for passing an amendment to prohibit sexual felons from serving in the military.

U.S. military servicemen and women give selflessly of themselves to serve their country. But for too many, these sacrifices have been met with sexual assault, degradation, and dismissal. However, the newly-passed Boxer Amendment is taking decisive steps to protect members of the military from sexual assault. Join in praising Senator Barbara Boxer and the U.S. Senate for protecting the men and women who have sworn to defend the United States.

In recent years, the subject of sexual assault within the United States military has become a hot-button issue. For instance, a recent investigation of Lackland Air Force Base in Texas revealed 48 victims of sexual assault or “unprofessional relationships” and exposed 23 perpetrators. The base responded to the scandal by establishing a buddy system wherein cadets must be accompanied by at least one other person whenever they are outside of their dorms. This “solution” is problematic for a number of reasons, but its biggest injustice is putting the onus of responsibility on potential victims of sexual assault, rather than on the (potential) aggressors.

The Boxer Amendment sends a clear message that preventing sexual assault within the military is a responsibility that lies with system administrators and potential perpetrators, not with potential victims. The ban on sexual felons in the military has been in effect since Defense Secretary Robert Gates implemented the policy administratively in 2009, but the Boxer Amendment solidifies the measure, codifying it into a law which cannot be reversed.

Before the ban was enacted, cadets entering the military could receive conduct waivers for sexual assault. According to a recently-released army report, however, soldiers with a conduct waiver for sexual assault were “more likely to commit a felony sex crime while on active duty than soldiers who entered the military without waivers.”

Commend the Senate for sending a strong message about sexual assault. Sign the petition applauding the passage of the Boxer Amendment.

PETITION LETTER

Dear Senator Boxer,

I would like to commend both you and the entire U.S. Senate for your unanimous passage of the Boxer Amendment.

Sexual assault is one of the largest problems facing our society today, and in recent years it has appeared within the United States military with startling frequency. The recent scandal at Lackand Air Force Base is just one example of the military’s dark and complicated internal struggles with sexual assault.

Unlike the controversial “buddy system” solution enacted at Lackland, however, the Boxer Amendment removes the onus of responsibility from potential sexual assault victims and puts it where it belongs: with perpetrators and with administrators who are meant to protect servicemen and women from harm. The amendment sends a strong message not only about sexual assaults within the military, but about sexual assaults anywhere.

Thank you for standing up for the innocent and punishing the guilty. Most of all, thank you for protecting those who have sworn to protect us.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: The U.S. Army via Flickr

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166 Signatures

  • Eric von Borstel
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