Just the other day I heard some fantastic news. My phone lit up with a notification from BuzzFeed that said something along the lines of “Ke$ha fans rejoice! Sony has said that Ke$ha has a CD in the works!” I locked my phone back and did a little happy dance. Our girl is finally able to release her music again after four silent years in the dark. As a refresher, I did a series of articles last semester in the Collegian surrounding Kesha and the scandal with her music producer. (Feel free to visit thegccollegian.com to find these articles.) On Tuesday October 14 of last year Kesha told the world that her producer had sexually assaulted her. In October of 2014, just a year prior, she filed a lawsuit against Dr. Luke, her producer. A judge ruled that the singer could not be let out of her exclusive contract with the label unless Dr. Luke agreed to end his partnership with Kesha. Dr. Luke denied the allegations, the deal, and Kesha’s freedom. Since then there has been a battle for her independence. Following the publicity of the lawsuit Kesha was offered a plea bargain; deny all allegations. Kesha posted on Instagram explaining the deal she was offered. She told her fans that she was offered freedom from her contract with Dr. Luke if she were to “lie” and say the rape and abuse never happened. She explained that they said she would “have to APOLOGIZE publicly and say that [she] never got raped.” Kesha continued to bring to light the fact that things like this happen regularly behind the closed doors of the entertainment industry. “I will not take back the TRUTH,” she stated, “I would rather let the truth ruin my career than lie for a monster.” Kesha didn’t stop fighting Dr. Luke in court but her case was eventually thrown out by the judge who stated, “Every rape is not a gender-motivated hate crime.” Silencing the victims of sexual assault is becoming an epidemic, especially in the cases of young women and young women in college. The majority of sexual assault victims are under 30 years old at 58%. One out of every six American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape. 90% of adult rape victims are female while 82% of all juvenile victims are female. Women who are college students are three times more likely to experience sexual violence. These statistics are provided by rainn.org and are staggering and alarming. Unfortunately, these statistics seem alarming only to a small percentage of the population. We have seen, in too many cases, seen men sexually assault women and walk away without proper punishment. Does the name Brock Turner ring any bells? It’s certainly a name is victim will never be able to forget. (Read more about that case in a previous article by my lovely co-editor Amanda: “This editorial is longer than Brock Turner’s sentence.”) There are few who are siding against Kesha saying she is a wild child party girl who can’t control herself. In response to that I say, is that any of your concern? In today’s society women’s voices are staggered and silenced. We have people talking about very influential women role models calling them “nasty.” When a guy talks about sex or vulgarity in the public eye it can be seen as normal or even “funny,” but when a woman says anything they are depicted as “un-lady like” or “disgusting.” There are countless cases like this in the entertainment industry alone. Look at women like Lady Gaga and Leslie Jones. Lady Gaga has a reputation for stating exactly how she feels and standing up for the rights of her “little monsters.” When Gaga wore a dress made entirely of raw meat to the 2010 VMAs to protest against the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, which was a governmental restriction placed on the rights of gay soldiers, the public thought she was promoting a message against animal rights. All this was according to Billboard.com who also stated that, in an interview with Ellen DeGeneres, Gaga said, “It’s certainly no disrespect to anyone that’s vegan or vegetarian.” Gaga is, in fact, vegan but since she wore this flashy statement piece she has been seen as insane and threatening to the cause. Lady Gaga recently came out with the news that she is the victim of sexual assault when she released her new song “Til It Happens to You.” She debuted the song at the 2016 Oscars. She had women from all over take the stage with writing on their arms. “Not your fault” was written on the arms of more than twenty women, making a powerful statement for everyone to see. Leslie Jones recently started in the reboot of the 1984 film Ghostbusters but also became the center of racist and misogynistic hate-filled twitter comments. The new Ghostbusters film was headed by an all-female cast which was quickly met with controversy as well. The SNL star was subject to tweets about her appearance and acting ability which were sparked by famous internet troll Milo Yiannopoulos. Various tweets compared Jones’ appearance to that of a Gorilla even calling her a “big lipped coon.” The racism eventually drove Jones from Twitter after a lengthy fight. What things do these actions tell our young ladies? With men like Donald Trump becoming president I can only assume women’s rights will be set back another fifty or so years. With men, and even some women, able to promote this kind of behavior in our society there is no way we can move forward. Kesha was eventually forced to drop her lawsuit against her producer, in the state of California only to pick it up again in New York where she hopes to get more headway. All this to get back to making the music she loves. She was defeated and forced to backpedal on her stance against someone who is getting away with attacking innocent and defenseless women. We cannot allow this country to look down on women and scare our next female generation into a submissive state. There are so many countries in the world that are oppressing women and they look towards the United States as a nation of progress hoping to diminish this pandemic. If this is how we handle it then there is no help for women anywhere.