Vice President Joe Biden wrote a public letter to the rape survivor who was assaulted by former Stanford University swimmer, Brock Turner. The vice president told the victim, "You are a warrior."
In the letter published on Buzzfeed
, Biden said, "I do not know your name, but your words are forever seared on my soul."
The victim has wished to remain anonymous.
Turner was found guilty in the sexual assault that occurred on the Stanford campus while the victim was unconscious. The case stirred controversy when a judge sentenced Turner to six months in prison, after prosecutors recommended up to 14 years, according to Buzzfeed.
Buzzfeed posted a letter that the victim read
to the court during Turner's sentencing and it has since been viewed over 13.5 million times. In her letter, she told Turner that his attack "took away my worth."
Biden wrote the 1994 Violence Against Women Act and is involved in the White House's campaign against sexual assault on college campuses. In his letter, he wrote that he was angry at a culture that failed the victim.
"I am filled with furious anger — both that this happened to you and that our culture is still so broken that you were ever put in the position of defending your own worth.
"You were failed by a system where one in five women is sexually assaulted— year after year after year," he wrote
The vice president pointed out that some questioned whether the victim was raped, since she was unconscious at the time — an argument made by Turner's defense.
"Sex without consent is rape. It is a crime. Period," Biden wrote.
"Your words will help people you have never met and never will. You have given them the strength they need to fight," he continued.
Biden also praised the two bystanders who chased and captured Turner after witnessing the attack.
"Those two men epitomize what it means to be a responsible bystander," Biden said.
Rep. Ted Poe, a Texas Republican, read parts of the victim's letter during remarks in the U.S. House and called for the judge to be removed and the sentence to be revised.
Poe said he hoped the case goes to appeal so Turner can get a harsher sentence, especially now that he is appealing the six-month sentence for even less time.
"The entitlement mentality, being a good college athlete, and self-righteousness, do not trump justice," Poe said.
Democratic Rep. Jackie Speier of California also read from the victim's letter. She said of the victim, "Her bravery inspires me," according to The Hill
A letter Turner's father wrote in support of his son also surfaced, according to the Washington Post
, and it has been widely criticized with being insensitive to the victim, pointing out that his son had "lost his appetite" and is suffering after "only 20 minutes of action."
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