Dasen Thao, 18, a participant in the YO! Youth Outlook media project, shares his views on the recent gang rape of a 15-year-old in Richmond, CA:

I remember when I was young, I was very immature about respecting people’s bodies. Until I learned about cases of people being raped and tortured. I began to have a different view.

If I witnessed someone getting raped, I would certainly call the police. My emotions become very disturbed when I think of rape. Although no one close to me has ever been raped, I do not wish for it. Hearing stories about people getting raped terrifies me to the bones…

Rape is not funny or pleasurable, and definitely not entertaining. Imagine if that was your son, daughter, wife or husband? Disrespecting someone’s body can cripple that person’s body and emotions forever.

What is even worse is that people can take pictures of rapes. In the case of the Richmond girl, it is incredibly sad to see how far teens have abused technology by recording these things just to be cool. I hope not all adults will view us as savages and outlaws.




This youth perspective on the recent Richmond, CA gang rape is part of a series produced by Youth Outlook, a project of New America Media. This work was originally published Oct. 29, 2009. Republished and reformatted as a series on Oakland Local with permission.

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