Florida’s State Attorney is pursuing 60 years behind bars for Marissa Alexander, a Black woman who fired a “warning shot” in the direction of her estranged husband and his two kids.
In August 2010, Alexander’s husband allegedly read messages from her ex on her cell phone and got so enraged that he strangled her neck and threatened to kill her. She grabbed a gun from the garage, where she was stuck inside, and fired a “warning shot” into the air, near where his kids were standing. She did not injure or kill anyone yet she was unsuccessfully able to argue the Stand Your Ground law. An appeals court threw out the case and in November, Marissa was released on bond from her 20-year conviction. Now, State Attorney Angela Corey is seeking 60 years — three times the original sentence — as punishment. Keep reading »
“The Vagina Monologues” playwright Eve Ensler has been speaking out about violence against women and girls with her V-Day movement for years. But she took things to a whole new level on February 14 of last year: One Billion Rising, her call to action that made headlines all over the world and even prompted celebrities like Anne Hathaway to speak out about gender-based violence. The premise was simple: on February 14, all over the world, women and men were asked to stop what they were doing and dance in the name of ending violence against women. Last year, one billion people “rose and shook the earth” through dance to strike back against the startling UN statistic that 1 in 3 women will be raped or beaten in their lifetime. One Billion Rising will be back in 2014 for a second round, and we are all invited to participate. This year, Ensler is screening a short film she created with Tony Stroebel about last year’s movement. “One Billion Rising” will be available to watch online on January 19, the same day it’s set to premiere at Sundance Film Festival. The film compiled footage of One Billion Rising from all over the world, and was put together with contributions of filmmakers from 207 countries. Check out the trailer and share it with everyone you know so we can make this year’s movement even bigger.
Calling himself only “Jean Paul,” the photographer who snapped over 1,000 photos over 27 minutes of Charles Saatchi and Nigella Lawson during their now-infamous lunch in London on June 9 is interviewed in the upcoming issue of Vanity Fair. “I saw her lurch violently backwards,” the paparazzo told the magazine about the incident. “I thought Charles was demonstrating something. It lasted about 30 seconds. Then he did it a second time, and it was so violent, with such force, that her head snapped backwards … I was taking pictures the whole time.” Keep reading »
Earlier this month, 20-year-old Alisha Hessler went out clubbing with two male friends, who brought a third male friend with them. At some point in the evening, when that guy tried to reach up Hessler’s skirt, she slapped him. He, in turn, beat her so badly that she suffered a concision and a broken nose. Hessler went to the hospital and filed a police report, but before officially filing charges against her attacker, she gave him a choice. Either he would be arrested and likely face charges for beating her or he could opt to stand in the middle of a busy Tampa intersection for either hours, wearing a dunce cap and holding a sign that read “I BEAT WOMAN. HONK IF I’M A SCUMBAG.” He chose the latter. (Apparently, Hessler originally wanted to the dickbag to sign a waiver allowing her to beat him for 10 minutes, but friends talked her out of it, given that, waiver or not, beating someone senseless, even if they hit you first, is illegal.) Keep reading »