The National Mall got a new memorial yesterday, if only briefly. As part of One Billion Rising, Baltimore-based feminist group FORCE installed a temporary memorial recognizing survivors of sexual assault. The group greated giant letters out of a statement from a rape survivor and floated the eight-foot-tall words onto the reflecting pool in front of the Lincoln Memorial.
I have spent a lot of time thinking about the silliness of "True Love Waits"-style campaigns, but it never really occurred to me to think about how a child who has been raped might experience these shaming "abstinence-only" discourses. That is to say, this would be particularly cruel, painful, and potentially traumatic for such a child.
Potentially even worse than teen purity rallies, I think, are the "purity balls."
Consider the opening line of this local news video: "Would you pledge your virginity to your father?"
I am in awe of feminist author and activist Dorothy Allison.
Born in South Carolina in 1949 and now living in California, Allison has attracted numerous accolades in the last thirty years for her six published books. (They include Lambda Literary Awards, ALA Awards for Lesbian and Gay Writing and a ridiculous number of others.) She is the rare writer to reach, in my opinion, wonderful heights in nonfiction, fiction, and poetry, though her two already-released full-length novels, Bastard Out of Carolina and Cavedweller, are her most famous works.
Disclaimer: I'm about to shamefully make a Huey Lewis & the News reference: It's hip to be...a perv? Well, Terry Richardson seems to think so. Ever since sexual abuse allegations against the hipster icon surfaced, the blogosphere has been commenting on the subsequent shit storms that keep popping up around this perv. So, it's about time that we deem Richardson a douchebag.
If Sinead O’Connor can rip up a picture of the Pope, then I can certainly call him a douchebag! (See Mom and Dad, I can still make LSAT approved if/then statements). With the recent (read: this wave of crisis) sexual abuse scandal rocking the Catholic church, there is no other choice than to demand more of Pope Benedict XVI and unless he wants to keep being branded a big old doucher, we’re going to need some big old action and soon!