Lisa Sendrow, the woman George Will mocked in his controversial sexual assault column fired back at him and wondered how he would feel if his daughter had been raped.
July 1, 2014

Lisa Sendrow is the woman that George Will referenced in his hideous op-ed column where he claimed assaulted women enjoyed "a coveted status that confers privileges." Will has been vilified over his POV and was even dropped by the St Louis Dispatch because their readers were horrified at what he wrote.

Media Matters interviewed her at length and she responded appropriately to his insulting characterizations of sexual assault.


Lisa Sendrow, whose experience of college sexual assault was dismissed by The Washington Post's George Will, slammed the columnist for silencing the voices of survivors and rejected the idea she received any privileges from her status as a survivor, as Will suggested. Instead, she said she was diagnosed with PTSD following her assault and received violent threats after her story was first reported.


Sendrow graduated from Swarthmore in 2013 and now works as a legal assistant. She told Media Matters in an interview over the weekend that she first "tried to avoid the Will piece as much as possible," but after friends pressed her to read it she found the column "infuriating," and felt that his dismissal of her story was dangerous to survivors.

"No one wants to hear that you brought this on yourself," she said, while discussing her reaction to Will's piece. "No one wants to relive the experience or tell that story, when they haven't really had a chance to reflect. You can't really heal if people are telling you that it's your fault. But that's what Will did."
Sendrow also vehemently rejected Will's claim that survivors might have a coveted status. "I absolutely have not received any privileges from sexual assault. [Will] has clearly never experienced the fear of sexual assault," she said. "He clearly has no idea how hard it is to sleep, to walk around, thinking at any moment this person that you live down the hall from could come out."--

In the end, Sendrow wondered whether Will would have been able to similarly dismiss her story of assault if it came from someone close to him."What if [Will's] daughter -- I don't know if he has a daughter -- but would he say to her, that this didn't happen?" she asked. "If she came to him crying, or even not crying, but if she came to him and told him this story, would he just say it wasn't real?"


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