Letters to the Editor

Sens. Grassley and Ernst, be my voice

I am a single, working Iowa mother who was sexually assaulted at age 14 by a high school football player and again, two years later, by my married, successful boss — who was a father to daughters. I was damaged by all of this, but they were unchanged.

They live their lives without consequence. They feel no remorse for what they took from me. I have recovered, mostly. I cry as I write this to you, but I’m only human.

For many years, I felt shame and guilt for having “participated” in my assault. I did not fight hard — I was scared. I just wanted it to be over quickly. I was disoriented both times, even though I was completely sober.

I was forever changed. I was too ashamed to go forward.

Sexual assault is a crime of opportunity. It is a crime that carries few repercussions for the perpetrators, but lifelong consequences for victims. Most victims are criticized, ostracized and harassed. Stop the violence. End the silence. All Americans deserve to feel safe.

I feel abandoned by Iowa’s senators. They represent me and all American women — 1 in 6 — who have suffered an attempted or completed sexual assault.

I ask for them to please be my voice in Washington. Call for an investigation of Brett Kavanaugh — if he is innocent, there should be no fear. If he is guilty, simply find someone more suitable to fill the seat.

Leonardine Utecht

Stanton

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We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

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