Before the movement to end street harassment really gained steam, I penned an essay about my childhood experiences as a poor, Black girl. In the piece, I detailed an interaction I had, at 11 years old with a group of men more than two times my age, where they publicly sexually harassed me while on my neighborhood street. The piece expressed the hurt, anger and rage that is buried so deep within me after decades of feeling unsafe in this world just because I am woman. This was the story of how I learned that my entire being was defined, in this society, by my sexuality. Not my intelligence, not my humor, not my wit, but access to my body.
I looked back on that piece and felt all the fears and anxiety that I have so long tried to cast aside and dismiss. Fears that resurfaced because of stories that two women were brutally attacked within the past couple of days (one of whom lost her life and the other who thankfully is expected to survive), by men who sought to gain access to their sexuality but were denied. Men who invaded the personal physical and emotional space of those women, without any permission or invitation, and murdered them simply because they were made aware of the fact that their advances were not welcomed. Keep reading »
Mary “Unique” Spears, a 27-year-old mother of three, had just left the funeral of a relative on Saturday when a man she’d never met began harassing her under the guise of wanting to ask her out. She was on her way to the Joe Louis Post rental hall in Detroit to continue memorial services with her family. The man, 38, asked Spears for her name and her number, but she wasn’t interested. The man continued to pester Spears throughout the evening until the bar’s security staff escorted him out. Around that time is when he grabbed and hit Spears. When Spears’ fiance intervened, the harasser pulled out a gun. He shot her once, and when she tried to run, he shot her two more times in the head. Then, the man turned his gun on the crowd and injured Spears’ fiance and four other members of the family. The five other victims are expected to heal, but Spears was killed. Thankfully, the man is currently in custody and expected to be arraigned on murder charges. Her family has set up a fundraising page to help pay for her funeral.
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Amanda Knox has been found guilty once again in the murder of former roommate Meredith Kercher in Italy, reports ABC News. Her lawyers are expected to appeal. Even if she loses on appeal, it’s unclear whether Knox will wind up behind bars again. She chose not to return to Italy for the trial and continues to insist from Seattle that she’s innocent. Read more at Newser…
“What happened to Walt is something I related to … If I’m truly honest with myself. I’ve come to realize that I think everybody is capable of [transforming into a villain]. If you came into a condition where you were under tremendous stress. And if I knew what buttons to push that threatened you and yours…You could become an extremely dangerous person … I had one girlfriend I wanted to kill … I envisioned myself killing her … It was so clear. My apartment had a brick wall on one side, and I envisioned opening the door, grabbing her by the hair, dragging her inside, and shoving her head into that brick wall until brain matter was dripping down the sides of it. Then I shuddered and realized how clearly I saw that happening. And I called the police because I was so afraid. I was temporarily insane—capable of doing tremendous damage to her and to myself.”
– Bryan Cranston talks about channelling his dark side to play Walter White on “Breaking Bad” in the August issue of GQ. In the article, he mentions that this ex-girlfriend, whose head he thought about smashing into a brick wall, was a drug addict who stalked him and left messages threatening to kill him on his answering machine — not that that makes his murder fantasy admission any less disturbing. Keep reading »
A 26-year-old woman in South Africa named Duduzile Zozo was raped and murdered because she is a lesbian. Zozo’s body was found in a yard near her home on June 29 with part of a toilet brush in her vagina. She was yet another victim of “corrective rape,” or the erroneous idea that a homosexual woman can be made straight by raping her. The South African government released a statement last week condemning the violence and offering condolences to Zozo’s family, with the reminder:
“The Bill of Rights of our Constitution recognises and guarantees equality. This fundamental right enjoins South Africans not to discriminate against anyone on several grounds, including gender, sex and sexual orientation.”
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Early on Sunday morning, University of Houston Research Professor Alf Stefan Andersson was found dead on an apartment floor. The culprit was his girlfriend, Ana Trujillo, but this murder occurred in no ordinary fashion: he was bludgeoned to death with the heel of a stiletto. Keep reading »