Contact: Gina Lauterio
‘Fundamentally Dishonest:’ Hunting Ground Movie Distorts the Truth and Shortchanges Victims, SAVE Charges
WASHINGTON / March 3, 2015 – SAVE, a national organization working to end sexual assault, is criticizing the recently released movie The Hunting Ground for presenting false statistics, offering a one-side portrayal of the problem, and failing to call for greater police involvement in campus sex cases.
Produced by CNN Films, The Hunting Ground purports to be a documentary. In fact, the movie contains numerous factual errors and omits essential perspectives. The film does not attempt to verify the accuracy or completeness of persons’ accounts.
The film makes the claim that 20% of college women are sexually assaulted, even though the U.S. Department of Justice reports a woman’s risk is under one percent each year: http://www.bjs.gov/index.cfm?ty=pbdetail&iid=5176
The movie misleadingly states that “more than 35 other schools all declined to be interviewed for this film,” when in fact two college presidents agreed to conduct interviews: https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2015/01/29/new-documentary-suggests-incorrectly-no-college-leaders-would-sit-camera-interviews
The film does not interview any men accused of rape, does not mention any of the widely publicized examples of false rape allegations, and neglects to highlight the growing number of lawsuits filed against universities charging wrongful expulsion.
The Hunting Ground makes no mention of the recent Rolling Stone/UVA story, widely viewed as an example of advocacy journalism based on implausible and unsubstantiated allegations.
Although the movie highlights how universities are doing a poor job handling sexual assault cases, the producers do not take the logical step of calling for greater involvement of criminal justice authorities. This omission leaves victims attempting to secure justice at the hands of ill-equipped campus committees, SAVE says.
“The Hunting Ground presents bogus statistics, presents only one side of the story, and is designed to play on viewers’ emotions,” notes SAVE spokeswoman Sheryl Hutter. “That’s fundamentally dishonest.”
SAVE has produced a 4-minute video, The Hunting Ground: Assaulting the Truth? which can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=9MBGMlpc4KE
Stop Abusive and Violent Environments is working to promote effective solutions to campus sexual assault: http://www.saveservices.org/