Amid the debt ceiling debacle, Norway shooting, and fears about Europe's next default, a news story broke about Oregon Representative David Wu allegedly sexually assaulting a young woman. I'm calling it simply a news story because as we'll see, the reporting frames it strangely: "an unwanted sexual encounter," a "sex scandal," an "aggressive sexual encounter." Major journalism outlets like CBS, the Washington Post, and CNN all used similar language, and I began to wonder: Why aren't they calling it rape?
We're really bummed we're not at the Allied Media Conference in Detroit right now! You can keep up with the goings-on by checking out their LiveStream, following the #AMC2011 hashtag on Twitter, or by browsing their conference guide for more online interaction.
And you? What are your reactions? What have you been reading?
Now that word's spread about the assault she endured, Logan is being re-victimized by those who say that an attractive white woman with blonde hair should've known better than to make her way through a mob of brown, Muslim men. Why didn't Logan realize that all Arab men are misogynistic beasts who haven't the slightest respect for their own women, let alone Western women—all of whom they regard as whores? Yeah, that about sums up the message on sites from the Los Angeles Times to the New York Times to Salon.
When a jury basically says "you were asking for it" in legalese, you know it's bad. That's what Jane Doe heard when last week a St. Louis court that decided that "playing to the camera" meant revoking her right to privacy.
Yesterday Lisa from A Woman's Ecdysis sent me a call for submissions to an anthology she is editing, called Dear Sister: Letters to Survivors of Sexual Violence.
I encourage you all to submit and forward this call widely. As we know the prevailing silence around sexual assault, it is my hope and request that you take a moment to contribute to this outreach and forward this to any and all allies and survivors of sexual violence. If you know of any coalitions, agencies, shelters, or organizations, feel more than free to offer this to them.
This is a long time vision of mine to build something for survivors and, I hope, this is just the beginning of community healing and radical memoir.
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!
This week we talk with author Laurie Halse Anderson, who's written five YA novels, including the New York Times best-seller Speak, one of the most compelling depictions of the trauma of the interior space of a teenage sexual assault survivor. Anderson has been getting letters from teen rape and incest survivors ever since she published Speak, which was her first novel, ten years ago. Her latest,Wintergirls, covers the well-worn, adolescent terrain of eating disorders through the lives of two 18-year-old girls, Lia and Cassie.
Page Turner talked with Anderson about growing up feminist, what she loves about the teen audience, personal power in a consumer-driven culture, and how Wintergirls brought to light her own issues with disordered eating and body image.