A new Tennessee law makes it legal to charge a woman with child abuse and assault if she takes illegal narcotic substances while pregnant. The first woman who was arrested under this new law was a 26-year old woman whose baby girl tested positive for methamphetamines after being born. The woman was reportedly arrested on her way out of the hospital. Although she was later directed to a rehab, this new law may set a terrifying precedent to all pregnant women.
Laws like this are disguised at protecting babies, but in fact just feed the prison pipeline and deter pregnant women from seeking healthcare. If we really want to uplift the status of women, then community resources and further education better serve this, rather than the cycle of incarceration for one nonviolent act after another. Keep reading »
Almost 250 female inmates in the California prison system were sterilized — some after being pressured by doctors — between 1997 and 2010, according to a a new report. The report conducted by the Center for Investigative Reporting quoted women that had felt pestered into getting tubal ligations at both the California Institution for Women in Corona and the Valley State Prison for Women In Chowchilla. Keep reading »
I’ve written candidly about Mother’s Day and all the ways I think the commercialization of it fucks up our relationships with our moms. My own relationship with my mom has been easy because … well, she’s awesome. But my complex relationship to fatherhood makes both talking and writing about it difficult.
There are two people in my life that I call Dad – my biological father and my stepfather. I have very different relationships with each of them and writing about one without mentioning the other feels like a weird act of disloyalty. But this Father’s Day, I’m letting go of that and writing about redemption and it’s relationship to fatherhood.
My biological father has a colorful past; he talks openly and nostalgically about his time as a drug dealer and his stint in prison. I remember bits and pieces of it. One time when I was small, my mother took my sister and me and my brother to the prison to see him. We pressed our dirty, little hands against the impassable glass partition that separated us and talked over a black phone that connected the two sides of the glass. When my dad was released, my parents were separated and we were shuffled back and forth between them every other weekend. My parents were young when they had my twin sister and me — just 21 and 22. Now, having a brother who is 25 and a father, it puts into perspective what it must have been like for my dad to have kids at that age. Keep reading »
Going to jail is (usually) not funny. But writing a Yelp review about going to jail? That’s hilarious. Randomly, I came across a Yelp listing for NYC’s Central Booking, which is the holding pen for freshly arrested criminals and would-be criminals, which is also lovingly referred to as “the Tombs.” (It’s also heavily featured on every Law & Order franchise ever). People who are arrested are brought to Central Booking to be arraigned, and often minor criminals — violations of open container laws, or turnstyle jumpers — are mixed in with more hardened criminals. It’s not a very luxe place, as you might imagine.
But because New Yorkers have opinions on everything, past Central Booking occupants had a lot to say on the quality of their CB stay. Read on for their illustrious jailhouse reviews. Keep reading »
“Unless you’re a killer, I don’t see a reason to stay there. I never hurt anyone but myself.”
—Lindsay Lohan looks adorable on the cover of Italian Vanity Fair. Too bad that inside she kind of backtracked on the whole “I accept my punishment and am working hard to move on” stance she’d taken earlier this year. Really, Lindsay, you think only murderers should go to jail? That’s just not how society works. [ONTD]
Keep reading »