It’s freshman year of college, and Janie and Dave are best friends. They do everything together – hang out in their dorm rooms, go to the dining hall, walk around campus. Their friendship is great, until one night, they decide to head to a “fraternity party.”
At the party, Janie and Dave drink alcohol. When they decide to leave, Dave walks Janie back to her dorm room – to be sure she gets there ok, of course. Once inside, Dave confesses that he loves Janie. He starts to kiss her and gets on top of her. Janie is confused, saying that she’s not sure about this…
I’m sure you can fill in the rest.
This is the plot of a play in which I once starred, called quite aptly “The Date Rape Play.” It was the summer before my junior year of college. I was cast in the play — and, crucially, paid $200 — in order to perform it for groups of incoming freshman, who Needed to Know About Date Rape. The play was written by an adult trying desperately to be “down” with the way the kids talked and acted. Sample lines included: “Have you heard about the date rape drug, Rohypnol?,” “I don’t know, I’m worried people will be drinking alcohol there,” and “You got the look girl, work it!” My fellow theater kid friends and I thought it was the best thing we’d ever seen. Keep reading »
“My niece was given a date rape drug that weekend. She’s 20-years-old – thank God nothing happened because she was with some responsible guys that took care of her. She was safe because she was with a group of friends that realized – she said, ‘Oh, my god, I can’t feel my … ” and she started losing consciousness. Thank god the people she was with put her in a room, closed the door, and she didn’t come to for three and a half hours. … There is an epidemic going on out here in regards to the treatment of women. We have to figure out how we can empower people in different ways. … I’m not a conventional parent, which I take a lot of pride in. The first thing I had my niece do was sit down with my daughter and a couple of her friends and tell her about that experience. I don’t just sit with Willow and go, ‘hey, this is what Mommy thinks.’ Let me just bring in a little reality to validate what Mommy’s been talking to you about.”
This is Jada Pinkett Smith discussing about #JusticeForJada, the hashtag in support of a 16-year-old girl named Jada, whose sexual assault went viral on the Internet. While speaking at an event on Sunday night and then following up with US Weekly, Pinkett Smith revealed that her niece was roofied the same weekend as Jada’s assault. So the actress asked her niece to sit down with her 13-year-old daughter Willow and talk about the experience — not to scare her, I think, but to open her eyes to rape culture in a very concrete way.
After the jump, Pinkett Smith explained more how she is raising Willow to be confident and assertive: Keep reading »
In October 2013, a group of current and former students accused the University of Connecticut of violating Title IX by mishandling their sexual assault cases which occurred at the school between 2010 and 2013. The Department of Education’s Office For Civil Rights launched an investigation into the school and whether it failed to follow the gender equality law that provides equal opportunity and access to education.
UCONN still refuses to broadly take responsibility for its failures. But today it was announced that the school is settling with five of the students it is accused of failing. Keep reading »
As tough as it can sometimes be to foster young women’s interest in the science, tech, engineering and math (STEM) fields, an even greater struggle awaits once they begin a career there. According to a new paper published in the journal PLOS ONE called “Survey of Academic Field Experiences (SAFE): Trainees Report Harassment and Assault,” women in the STEM fields are likely to face sexual harassment by their superiors while doing fieldwork, especially in the most formative years of their careers. Keep reading »
“This has been extremely difficult and stressful for me personally and for those I love. I’m appreciative of the family, friends, fans and business partners who supported me throughout this and look forward to happier times as we all move forward with our lives.”
On Monday, a woman named Joanie Faircloth released a public statement recanting her rape accusations against Conor Oberst, also known as the singer Bright Eyes. The North Carolina woman had written in an xoJane comment thread that she had been raped by the musician when she was 16. (The comments have since been deleted.) Oberst always denied the allegations and in February, he sued Faircloth for libel. Following her statement released this week, Oberst released a statement of his own. His spokesperson told Rolling Stone it’s unclear whether he will continue forward with the libel lawsuit. [Rolling Stone] [Photo: Getty]
Here are two things I never expected to be told in the same breath: “You’re so skinny! This will look cute on you,” and “I’m pretty sure you’re lying about that time your dad molested you.”
Nine months ago, I confronted my father about sexually abusing me as a child. Since then, my communication with my family has been limited, and it caught me off-guard when, just two weeks ago, my aunt invited me to meet her for lunch. I impulsively agreed, and initially, we started on the right note. After a few minutes of polite pleasantries, she handed me a gift bag. Inside, I found a hand-me-down Ann Taylor blazer with the tags still on (“I love the pattern, but it just doesn’t fit me”) and a copy of Meredith Maran’s My Lie: A True Story of False Memory (“I learned so much from this book. It’s amazing how unreliable our memories are, don’t you think?”). Never before had I felt so flattered and insulted all at once. Keep reading »
“The statements I made and repeated online and elsewhere over the past six months accusing Conor Oberst of raping me are 100 percent false. I made up those lies about him to get attention while I was going through a difficult period in my life and trying to cope with my son’s illness. I publicly retract my statements about Conor Oberst, and sincerely apologize to him, his family, and his fans for writing such awful things about him. I realize that my actions were wrong and could undermine the claims of actual sexual assault victims and for that I also apologize. I’m truly sorry for all the pain that I caused.”
This is a statement released by Joanie Faircloth, a North Carolina woman who last year, in the comments section of an xoJane article, accused Bright Eyes singer Conor Oberst of raping her when she was 16. (The comments have since been deleted.) Oberst has always denied the allegations; in February, he sued Faircloth for libel. According to the statement, she contacted Oberst’s lawyers today with this notarized recant. Well, shit. [SPIN] [Photo: Getty]
I woke up one morning last week to my Twitter in an uproar. That’s reasonably common in my world, as many of the people I follow are marginalized and there’s a lot to be angry about. Turns out that the FBI has seized MyRedbook, a California site where masseuses and escorts could advertise for clients for free, and arrested two people, Eric Omuro and Annmarie Lanoce, in connection to “using the mail and the Internet to facilitate prostitution” as well as money laundering under several aliases.
As of right now it’s not entirely clear if those arrests were the main focus of the sting, or if there will be more upcoming. It’s terrifying to many people close to me, who used MyRedbook to advertise their erotic entertainment services because other options like Eros were too expensive or less trafficked by paying customers. We don’t really know what options sex workers who had profiles up on MyRedbook have to protect themselves from investigation. I’m among them, as I used to advertise on MyRedbook as a professional dominatrix. Keep reading »