Across the internet, various groups are demanding justice for Daily Coleman, the 14-year-old girl who was allegedly raped by a popular high school football player from a well-connected family. But it’s unclear what that “justice” would actually look like. A special prosecutor has been appointed to the case, and I’m hopeful she’ll be able to shed light on all the facts. But were it not for conservative Supreme Court justices, Daisy could have had other options: She could have sued her alleged attacker under a federal cause of action established by the Violence Against Women Act. I’m writing about that in The Nation today:...read more
There’s a part of me that thinks yes — when the legal system has failed, there are few other options to seek justice, and an internet collective isn’t the worst one. But I’m also incredibly wary of unchecked power and the ethos of spreading information without verifying its authenticity or accuracy, and a movement that feeds on rage and indignation without any real accountability. It’s particularly important to look at these issues when they’re being carried out for a cause we believe in. Does the calculus change if Anonymous’s tactics are leveled at someone we support? And then, are the tactics and ethics bad, or just the issue? I have a feeling this position will be very unpopular with the Feministe commentariat, but here goes:...read more
In Maryville, Missouri, a 14-year-old girl was allegedly raped by a high school senior from a well-connected family. She and a 13-year-old friend snuck out to go to a party with some senior boys, mostly popular football players. They gave her alcohol until she blacked out, and one of them had sex with her. Photos were taken. Then they left her on her doorstep in the winter cold, where she nearly froze to death. Sexual assault, sexual exploitation and endangerment charges were all brought. Then they were dropped. The girl’s family was essentially run out of town, and their house eventually burned down. The entire story is horrific, and the Kansas City Star offers a great piece of in-depth reporting here....read more
An anti-abortion siege is under way in Albuquerque, and activists there are using tactics and rhetoric we’ve heard before — tactics and rhetoric that have a marked history of getting abortion providers killed. I’m detailing the pro-life strategy of violence in Salon:...read more
This week at the Guardian I’m writing about the gay conversion therapy ban passed in New Jersey, and how religious freedom is too often used as an argument for abusing kids — at the expense of children’s own equal protection under the law....read more
Last week, Tracy Connelly was murdered in the van where she lived with her partner. Police suspect the killer was a client; Connelly was a sex worker who lived across from St. Kilda Gatehouse. She was also a loving partner and beloved friend to other women in her community....read more
[Trigger warning]: In 2009, a 16-year-old girl was beaten and raped for more than two hours on the Richmond High School campus in California. She nearly died after the attack, which was perpetrated by multiple men while even more looked on. After four years, some justice is being done: Two of the accused have been found guilty and are facing long sentences. I’m obviously not a big fan of long prison sentences as a general rule, but for sadists who rape and torture a young woman for group entertainment over the course of several hours? Yeah, those guys probably shouldn’t be walking the streets. Neither should the onlookers who encouraged the violence and did nothing to stop it....read more
Just two days after acquitting George Zimmerman of second-degree murder and manslaughter charges for killing Trayvon Martin, Juror B37 — one of five white women on the six-woman jury — had signed with Martin Literary Management to write a book. President Sharlene Martin released a statement saying that B37 felt it important that the public understand her experience during the trial. After the public got to know B37 a little better, however, the book plans have disappeared....read more
A jury has acquitted George Zimmerman, a self-appointed neighborhood watchman, of second-degree murder for killing Trayvon Martin, an unarmed black teenager.
Comments on this thread will be fully, and heavily, moderated, so please be understanding when they take some time to appear. Please keep in mind that this is a sensitive time and a painful subject, so idle questions and dispassionate speculation may not be deemed appropriate for publication....read more
Abortion restrictions are being introduced, debated and mostly passed across several states in the U.S. Texas has been the most notable, but many others — Ohio, North Carolina, Alabama, Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi and North Dakota — are ramping up their anti-abortion legislation. But while the GOP claims to focus on “life,” many of the states dedicating enormous amounts of time, money and energy to limiting abortion also see incredibly poor health outcomes for mothers and children. I outline some of them over at Al Jazeera; here’s a bit:...read more
Doctors under contract with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation sterilized nearly 150 female inmates from 2006 to 2010 without required state approvals, the Center for Investigative Reporting has found.
At least 148 women received tubal ligations in violation of prison rules during those five years — and there are perhaps 100 more dating back to the late 1990s, according to state documents and interviews.
Not even 50 years since Goodman, Schwerner and Chaney were lynched–really lynched, not what conservative assholes call “lynching.” And how many of those states moved to restrict voting how many hours after the ruling? I feel like so much of what was fought for and won with good men and women bleeding and dying was just rolled back and thrown out.
This thread will be pre-moderated....read more