“Everybody needs a day off, everybody needs the right to say ‘hey, you know what I need a minute to breathe. I want to bring my family to the movies without 30 motherfuckers following me. Everybody here, they like sex right? Sex is great when you and your partner be like ‘hey, this is what we both want to do.’ But if one of those people don’t want to do that, what does that constitute, that’s called rape. That is called violation.”
Add Kanye West to the list of celebrities who need better analogies to describe invasions into their personal life which come with fame. This is what Kanye said onstage yesterday at the Wireless Festival in Birmingham, UK, and well, do I really need to say more? Much like when Charlize Theron compared Googling herself with “feeling raped,” the public is snapping back at Kanye — quite rightly. Think of another analogy, celebs. [Mirror UK] [Photo: Fame/Flynet]
The good news: 29-year-old Lee Setford has been jailed for five years after a jury found him guilty of raping a drunk woman passed out on his couch. The bad news: the judge in the case, Michael Mettyear, is really sad about it and had the nerve to offer Setford some consoling words after the verdict was read that reenforce dangerous myths about sexual assault. Namely, that Setford isn’t a “classic rapist” — are there also avant garde rapists and mod rapists and sporty rapists? — and that it’s a shame he didn’t just plead guilty so he could get a lesser sentence. Yes, seriously. Keep reading »
When three students at James Madison University sexually assaulted a classmate on tape, their punishment was expulsion – after they graduated. Yes, really. JMU, along with 55 other schools, are under investigation for their mistreatment of on-campus assault cases. Other recent absurd assault punishments have included 30-day suspensions and book report assignments. Jon Stewart was just as appalled by that as the rest of us, so he got a real about the dismal state of affairs by bringing in “Daily Show” correspondents Jessica Williams and Jordan Klepper to offer some safety tips to students. [TIME]
There’s awkward errors and then there’s really awkward errors: subtitles on a BBC News weather report this week accidentally warned Glastonbury Gestival-goers to prepare for “rape” instead of rain. This Instagram pic shows the “unfortunate typo,” as a BBC spokesperson put it. I’m sure most newswatchers put it together themselves when the subtitles showed the newscaster advised packing one’s “wellies” — not a good deterrent of sexual assault. [Independent UK]
New York City has reached a $40 million settlement with the five wrongfully convicted men who as teenagers were falsely accused and imprisoned for an attack on a jogger.
In 1989, a white female investment banker named Trisha Meili was brutally beaten and raped while jogging in Central Park at nighttime. Meili fell into a coma and remembers nothing about the attack. The NYPD pinned the brutality on five Black and Latino teenaged boys, despite the fact that some of the evidence didn’t add up. Keep reading »
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch newspaper has dropped conservative columnist George Will in part due to his recent column arguing that being a rape victim is a “coveted status” on a college campus that “confers privileges.” The newspaper insinuated that Will’s column had been on the chopping block for awhile but this sexual assault column “made the decisions easier. The column was offensive and inaccurate; we apologize for publishing it.” Will is going to be replaced by another conservative columnist, the paper said. Finally, some repercussions. [Politico]
According to a source speaking to Page Six, the video for Lady Gaga’s collab with R. Kelly, “Do What You Want” — which was scrapped following renewed attention on Kelly’s history as a, you know, pedophile — was far worse than we could have imagined. Although maybe we shouldn’t surprised? Shot by pervotographer Terry Richardson, who has his own reputation for sexually coercing and assaulting models, the video (that’s the promo photo above) allegedly featured Kelly as a doctor and Gaga as his patient. “Will I ever walk again?” Gaga supposedly asks Dr. Kelly.
“Yes, if you let me do whatever I want with your body,” he replies, followed by: “I’m putting you under, and when you wake up, you’re going to be pregnant.” THE HELLLLLL. Keep reading »
Last week, The Frisky published an essay by an anonymous writer about her rape. She wrote about the absurdity of columnist George Will’s allegation that being a victim of sexual assault confers certain privileges. Activists have responded to Will’s inane, offensive piece with the hashtag #SurvivorPrivilege, snarkily writing about all the ways that they’ve “benefitted” from their sexual assault. Our writer’s piece focused on losing her virginity at 16 through rape and the effect it has had on her life.
The writer chose to be anonymous. So, as I often do, I put a note at the end of the piece offering to forward emails along to the author if anyone wanted to be in touch. I didn’t necessarily expect any response. But in the ensuing week, I’ve been blown away by the amount of email that I’ve been forwarding (and will continue to forward as they come in). These emails have been showing me things, both good and bad, about sexual assault in America.
NOTE: I want to make clear that am not referring to any specific letter writing, or sharing details of anyone’s story without permission. These are observations that I’ve made in aggregate from all the emails. My hope is to convey how similar stories of sexual assault and how powerful they are in a way that slogans and statistics can’t contain. Keep reading »