Misinformation: In a column in today’s D, Tanisha Keshava ’05 recycles the same bogus statistics on sexual assault that have been repeated ad nauseum since they were actually put forth in 1988. These numbers, particularly the ever popular “one woman in four will be a victim of rape or attempted rape in college,” were debunked almost a decade ago now, yet they continue to thrive at Dartmouth.

This isn’t intended as a criticism of Ms. Keshava. She is obviously quite sincere in her belief in these numbers, and is trying to focus some attention on an issue that is of the utmost importance. What seems obvious, given that she is a SAPA who recently attended the Sexual Abuse Awareness Month events, is that these numbers are coming from either her training or the events themselves. In either case, the College’s administration is endorsing a set of highly inflammatory statistics that no longer stand up under even the faintest hint of academic scrutiny. By absurdly inflating the scope of a problem whose actual extent is more than serious enough to begin with, it encourages reasonable people to dismiss the credibility of the cause of sexual abuse awareness. It also makes it quite clear that Dartmouth can be more concerned with a particular agenda than the accuracy of its statements.