Serena Williams is really not doing a great job recovering from the victim-blaming comments about the Steubenville rape that she made during an interview with Rolling Stone. Her first apology was incredibly lame, mostly because she referred to it as “what I supposedly said,” insinuating that the reporter had misinterpreted her words that were not actually meant for the article.
“What happened in Steubenville was a real shock for me. I was deeply saddened. For someone to be raped, and at only sixteen, is such a horrible tragedy! For both families involved – that of the rape victim and of the accused. I am currently reaching out to the girl’s family to let her know that I am deeply sorry for what was written in the Rolling Stone article. What was written – what I supposedly said – is insensitive and hurtful, and I by no means would say or insinuate that she was at all to blame.”
Williams has since come out with a slightly more convincing apology, but seems more annoyed that what she said was published instead of the fact she said it. The tennis star said she reached out to the Steubenville rape victim and her mother and ”we came to a wonderful understanding, and we’re constantly in contact.” Regarding her comments, Williams said: Keep reading »
accountability, noun — the quality or state of being accountable; especially: an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one’s actions
It must be nice to be Steubenville, Ohio, football coach Reno Saccoccia. Coach Saccoccia is required by law to report child abuse and is said to have known about the rape of an unconcious teenaged girl by two Steubenville football players — a text message from Trent Mays, one of the two football players convicted of rape last month, said “I got Reno. He took care of it and shit ain’t gonna happen, even if they did take it to court. Like he was joking about it so I’m not worried.” Saccoccia also did not punish the players involved nearly harshly enough, allowing them to play eight games of the 10-game season. Yet he has had a two-year contract with Steubenville City Schools renewed; in addition to coaching the Steubenville football team, which is a separate contract, Saccoccia is newly confirmed as the director of administrative services, a position which requires Board of Education approval.
In other words, even though this man is roundly considered to have done next to nothing to hold the convicted rapists on his football team accountable for their actions, the city of Steubenville still wants to give him a paycheck. It’s mind-boggling. [WTOV9, The Atlantic Wire]
In yet another case of a school valuing athletic prowess over student safety and justice, a Michigan high school has just been sued by the National Women’s Law Center for failing to respond to a sexual attack on school grounds–because the perpetrator happened to be a star player on the basketball team.
The chilling story goes like this: in 2010, a female student (Jane Doe) was sexually assaulted in Forest Hills Central High School’s soundproof band room by a well-known member of the boy’s basketball team. Jane reported the attack to a teacher, who alerted the school principal. The principal held a meeting with Jane and her parents, not to offer the school’s help in bringing Jane’s attacker to justice, but to discourage them from pressing charges. Why? To protect the young man’s chances of getting recruited to a top college team, of course! (Because if Steubenville taught us anything, it’s that there’s nothing more important than protecting the promising futures of young rapists.) Keep reading »
ABC News aired new video of teen partygoers in Steubenville, Ohio, being questioned by police regarding the sexual assault of “Jane Doe,” the then 15-year-old girl whose story has entranced the nation. On the night of her assault, Jane Doe was raped and carried unconscious to multiple parties all while pictures were taken; last week, Ma’lik Richmond and Trent Mays received one year and two years, respectively, in juvenile detention facilities for participating in her abuse. ABC’s video shows teens (their faces not obscured, for some reason) describing how Jane Doe got increasingly drunk throughout the evening — meaning she was less and less able to consent to any sexual behavior. “She was a mess,” says one boy interviewed by cops. “She wasn’t responding. She was passed out.” Keep reading »
***Trigger warning in video for simulated rape***
This week began the trial of Trenton Mays and Ma’lik Richmond, two teenaged boys in Steubenville, Ohio, who were charged with the rape and kidnapping of a 15-year-old girl at a high school party this August. The boys are members of the Steubenville High School football team, local celebrities in a football-obsessed culture. Other members of the team witnessed the alleged sexual assault by Mays and Richmond of the girl, who was blackout drunk and vomiting on herself. Partygoers snapped pictures of her being carried around by her arms and legs and tweeted and texted pics of her degradation; another student at the party filmed a video where he joked about the “dead girl.”
Ever since the Steubenville rape began getting press coverage, the former porn star Traci Lords has been vocal about the local culture’s misogynistic culture. She herself was raped in Steubenville at age 10 by a 14-year-old boy. Yesterday, Lords, who is now a musician, released a song called “Stupidville” — a slang term for the town that the locals use — about sexual assault. Keep reading »
The former guardians of Ma’lik Richmond, a teen football player who is facing sexual assault charges for allegedly raping a 16-year-old girl at a high school party this summer, came to his defense on “The Today Show” this morning.
In August, members of the Steubenville High School football in Ohio team sexually abused an unconscious drunk girl, carrying her to multiple parties where she was raped and peed upon. The victim was also photographed while being violated and carried around the party and images were posted on Twitter and other social media sites. Two football players from the team, Richmond and another student, Trenton Mays, were arrested and charged with rape and kidnapping, although many other students were at the party and witnessed the assault. Keep reading »