Occasionally, Twitter users take on a cause that isn’t just posting pictures of their cats or ruminating on the injustices of waiting in line at Shake Shack. Like today’s hashtag campaign, started by blogger and Twitter-er London Feminist. The #ididnotreport campaign (which definitely comes with a trigger warning for those who have suffered sexual assault or abuse), encourages women to share their stories of sexual assault and the reasons why they may or may not have reported their experiences. Keep reading »
Thank goodness female lawmakers in Indonesia have their male colleagues to look out for them. These silly women simply thought their outfits were a fashion statement, but little did they know that their “provocative” clothing invited rape. That’s why members of Indonesia’s parliament have drafted rules to ban female lawmakers from wearing miniskirts and other “skimpy clothes” items to work. Said the speaker of the Indonesia’s House of Representatives:
“We know there have been a lot of rape cases and other immoral acts recently, and this is because women aren’t wearing appropriate clothes. Women wearing inappropriate clothes arouse men, so it needs to be stopped. You know what men are like — provocative clothing will make them do things.”
Thanks, guys! I know how hard it must be not to rape your female colleagues. Really, it’s a wonder women are allowed to work alongside you at all. [AFP]
One of the scariest anti-abortion bills in the U.S. right now is Virgina’s “mandatory ultrasound” bill, which requires a woman seeking an abortion to be vaginally penetrated with a speculum and ultrasound probe. The doctor operating the transvaginal ultrasound will then reflect that image onscreen; women will be forced to undergo this procedure to have an abortion even if they don’t want it. There is absolutely no medical reason to do a transvaginal ultrasound before an abortion, the bill doesn’t provide any exceptions for victims of rape or incest, and opponents of the bill have pointed out that it is, oh, you know, mandating doctors to sexual assault their patients.
Nevertheless, that scary bill passed Virginia’s House of Delegates last week. Now one politician, Delegate David Englin, a Democrat, is trying to draw attention to the fact that if abortion providers are required to probe women with transvaginal ultrasounds against their will, ultimately these doctors will be punishable under VA’s “object sexual penetration statute.” Keep reading »
Fox News contributer Liz Trotta would like to clear up a few things. First of all, when she spoke on the Pentagon’s decision to officially open up more combat positions to women and said women in the military should “expect” to be raped by their male comrades, she “certainly did not” mean all military men. Just most of them! Okay, okay, just some of them. Well, that part isn’t clear either. The point is, men have testosterone, “testosterone rules,” ipso facto, testosterone makes men rape-y. Whatcha gonna do?
But anyway, this discussion is all besides the point. The real focus of our ire here should not be on Liz Trotta, Liz Trotta says. It should be on feminists and The New York Times.
Oh, if only I were making this up. Keep reading »
Violent sexual assaults in the military have increased by 64 percent since 2006, according to a recent Pentagon report. Let me repeat that number: 64 percent.
But few days ago, Fox News contributor Liz Trotta made it clear she doesn’t consider this to be a valid problem. “Now, what did they expect? These people are in close contact,” said Trotta, who also dismissed the Pentagon’s new support programs for sexual assault victims as a waste of money: “I thought the mission of the armed forces was to defend and protect us, not the people who are fighting the war.”
Ex-Marine Sarah Albertson is not having it. Albertson, who served as a Security, Governance, and Economics Analyst in the USMC from 2003 to 2008, wrote an open letter responding to Trotta’s inflammatory remarks and has created a Change.org petition calling for Fox News to fire her. Says Albertson: “Nowhere in my enlistment contract, not even in the fine print, did I agree to sexual assault as a part of the job.”
Click here to sign the petition, and read the full text of Albertson’s letter after the jump. Keep reading »
The issues of male rape and sexual abuse get plenty of sensationalistic air time on “Law & Order: SVU,” but not so much substantive awareness in our day-to-day lives. While it is true that reported sexual abuse of girls and women is far more prevalent than male abuse, I also assume acknowledging or discussing male sexual abuse brings up uncomfortable feelings amongst guys about masculinity and what it means to be a “strong man.” There’s even vicious stereotypes that dog gay guys — who are routinely denigrated as being “not manly enough” — that they must have been sexually abused as kids. In a way, that’s kind of all you need to know about what some (perhaps many) people think of male sexual abuse survivors.
So it makes sense then, from a messaging standpoint, that to reach male victims of sexual abuse, the UK group Survivors UK would address “masculinity” head-on. Their new campaign, which launches this week in time for a rugby tournament in London, features a rugby ball (speared by a nail, I think?) and the slogan: “Real men get raped: and talking about it takes real strength.” Keep reading »
“Trying to ruin someone else’s life is a poor way to address one’s alcohol and self-control problems.”
This is true. But is this really the most intelligent — to say nothing of compassionate — thing for an advice columnist to say to someone whose friend was possibly date raped?
No, Dear Prudence at Slate.com, it was not.
Keep reading »