President Obama: “It’s On Us” to Prevent Campus Rape

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In a further attempt to bring campus sexual assault into the national conversation, President Obama launched the It’s On Us campaign Friday, a national public service campaign that urges college students to combat sexual assault on their campuses. Calling for a “fundamental shift in our culture,” Obama, joined by Vice President Biden in the East Room […]

Of Ray Rice and Aunt Gracie’s Black Eyes

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TRIGGER WARNING: VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN My Aunt Gracie is one of my mother’s 10 sisters, the one with the gentle half smile. She’s always been a favored sister and aunt, beloved in our family for her sweetness and generosity and her quiet, seemingly eternal good nature. But sealed in my mind’s eye is an image […]

Will the NFL Ever Get it Right About Violence?

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TRIGGER WARNING: VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN. Today, the Baltimore Ravens professional football team terminated the contract of running back Ray Rice. Soon after, he was suspended indefinitely by the National Football League (NFL). We would be cheering heartily for these actions—because Rice punched out his soon-to-be-wife, and such off-the-field violence should have serious consequences. But we’re […]

When 9-1-1 Can’t Find You: How Wireless Providers Can Save Women’s Lives

Last month, Michelle Miers was shot and stabbed at her home by an attacker. Still breathing but in need of urgent medical care, she picked up her cellphone and dialed 9-1-1. Like most Americans, Miers probably presumed that calling 9-1-1 guaranteed help was on the way. For the 26-year-old mother of two, however, help would come too […]

Does Comic-Con Condone Rape Culture?

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Sexual harassment and assault are prevalent everywhere in our culture, including at public events. In some cases, though, the atmosphere of particular events actually seems to promote, or at least tacitly condone, harassment. San Diego’s Comic-Con, the biggest convention of its kind, is one such event. In my piece, “Comic-Conned: Gender Norms in a Carnivalesque […]

Men Sue in Campus Sexual Assault Cases

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One in five college women are sexually assaulted, and only 12 percent of college rape survivors will report their rape to the police. And yet, some men accused of such assaults are playing the victim. As covered extensively in the Spring issue of Ms. magazine, rape on college campuses is gaining widespread national attention thanks […]

Survivors Expose George Will’s Male Privilege

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Washington Post columnist George F. Will evoked Internet scorn this week when he claimed that college women are lying about being “sexually assaulted”—the scare quotes are his—in order to gain the “coveted status that confers privileges” to victims. What are these coveted privileges that sexual assault victims gain? Besides a brief mention of trigger warnings, […]

Stop Being Surprised, Damn It

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I am not one bit surprised that a heavily-armed Elliott Rodger knocked on the door of Alpha Phi sorority at UC Santa Barbara, and when there was no response, shot and killed two Tri Delta sorority members who were outside. I am not one bit dumbfounded that when his anxious parents called police to do […]

Misogyny Kills: How the Isla Vista Shooting Proves What #YesAllWomen Already Know

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On Friday night in Isla Vista, Elliot Rodger began the “day of retribution” he promised on YouTube, killing six women and men as part of what he himself called a “war on women.” I had arrived in Isla Vista five minutes earlier. I didn’t realize that when I pulled up to join my friend for the […]

A Week of White House Progress on Campus Rape

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The Obama administration has been ramping up its efforts to combat campus rape this year. Just this week, the White House released a 20-page report on combating campus rape, launched a star-studded PSA on the issue and announced that 55 colleges and universities are under federal investigation for the alleged mishandling of sexual violence cases. The […]