Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick recently decided that the state would not participate in a federal program to deport illegal immigrants accused of crimes. Several Republican state Representatives have been very vocal about opposing Patrick's decision. One is Ryan Fattman (really), who says that all illegal immigrants should be deported. When asked if a woman who was raped and beaten on the street should fear deportation, Fattman replied, "“My thought is that if someone is here illegally, they should be afraid to come forward." [more inside]
45 years ago yesterday, the Supreme Court ruled in Griswold v. Connecticut that birth control (for married women) was legal and that the US Constitution guaranteed privacy to women seeking reproductive services. That privacy ruling was instrumental in subsequent cases [pdf]regarding the legality of birth control and pregnancy termination. And while many states are pushing through new termination restrictions; some states are now pushing through "Personhood" laws that grant constitutional rights to zygotes and fetuses. These laws ban abortion without exception, ban certain forms of birth control, ban in-vitro fertilization, and forbid the treatment of pregnancy complications such as ectopic pregnancies. The legislations are being marketed by a "Conceived by Rape" bus tour. [more inside]
Amnesty International first reported in March that Egyptian authorities were conducting "virginity tests" on female protestors. Today, military authorities admitted that these tests took place and tried to defend the practice.
'In South Africa's black townships, being gay can be fatal.' 'South Africa has a liberal constitution promising equal rights for all.' 'In a society that is deeply religious, traditional and highly patriarchal, lesbians and gay men contradict the dominant view of African manhood.' 'Across Africa, gay people are threatened, humiliated, raped, beaten, killed, jailed, outed in front-page newspaper stories, condemned by preachers as un-Christian and by politicians and traditional leaders as un-African.' 'In South African townships there's a crime dubbed "corrective rape," rape to "cure" lesbians, and sometimes gay men and transsexuals. They are told they are being taught a lesson: how to be a real woman or man, survivors say.' [more inside]
"The woman, 29, testified, she woke up naked except for a bra, in a puddle of vomit, and believing that she had been raped the night before by a police officer." An East Village video system "recorded two police officers as they arrived at the apartment building above the bar four times in four hours — once on official business, then sneaking back three more times in secret..." What Proof Does a Woman Have to Have? (NYT) [more inside]
The Supreme Court of Canada ruled today, in a 6-3 decision, that a person cannot give advance consent to sexual activity while unconscious. [more inside]
Joseph Brooks was a writer of commercial jingles in the 60's. He went on to write and direct the film You Light Up My Life in 1977; the film was a critical flop but a commercial success, and the title song went on to win an Oscar and become an adult contemporary standard. He later wrote the book and music for, and direct the stage musical In My Life (nyt), which flopped famously in 2005 amidst reactions of bewilderment. In 2009, he was indicted on charges(nyt) of luring at least 11 actresses across the country to his Manhattan apartment and raping them. He was found dead yesterday of a suicide while awaiting trial.
"I felt comforted by the fact that like everyone I've reconnected with on Facebook, he'd gotten fat, and by the banality of his listed interests like "Bob Marley" and "Scrubs." He was a monster in my memory, but on Facebook, he was just a man. I called him."
Broadband Internet: An Information Superhighway to Sex Crime? [.pdf] (Leuven et al. 2011) is a German/Norwegian study that attempts to answer the question Does internet use trigger sex crime? [more inside]
Lara Logan breaks the silence and tells about her horrorific rape in Tahrir Square. (Single Link 60 Minutes Video)
"For the progress of humanity, work alone is not adequate, but the work should be associated with love, compassion, right conduct, truthfulness and sympathy. Without the above qualities, selfless service cannot be performed."On Sunday morning, Indian guru Sri Sathya Sai Baba passed away. He leaves behind a massive empire, several million mourning devotees worldwide, an extensive religious philosophy, a great deal of controversy and a legacy of large-scale philanthropic projects in India, including free hospitals and mobile medical facilities, a free university and schools, and other efforts which included supplying clean water to hundreds of rural villages. [more inside]
When men in the military rape other men in the ranks, no one wants to talk about it. Why the sexual assault of males in the service is finally being confronted. [more inside]
A Very Special Episode: On July 20, 1985, ABC aired a "Too Close For Comfort" episode titled: "For Every Man, There's Two Women" in which Monroe Ficus (played by "unabashed gay icon" Jim J. Bullock) is kidnapped and raped by two bikers (possibly in a bathtub of jello). In recent years, stories have surfaced of individuals traumatized by the repressed memories of this mysterious episode. This is one of those stories. A film by Ethan Duff. (via The Retroist) [more inside]
After the horrific gang-rape of a child in a small town in east Texas has gained national attention, serious criticisms have been made of how the story has been reported. [more inside]
An Illinois 'Romeo and Juliet' law would take young sex offenders off of the registry. [more inside]
The Someone You're Not: "Our packed prisons are starting to disgorge hundreds of mostly African-American men who, over the last few decades, we wrongly convicted of violent crimes. This is what it's like to spend nearly thirty years in prison for something you didn't do. This is what it's like to spend nearly thirty years as someone you aren't. And for Ray Towler, this is what it's like to be free." Via. [more inside]
Bullestorm is a rather silly FPS from People Can Fly, focusing irreverance, violence, points for ridiculous achievments and fun fun. It's marketing campaign has included the meta-game "Duty Calls", which savagly skewers it's equally violent but far more self-serious competition such as Call of Duty: Black Ops. Naturally, Fox news has freaked out and started a campaign against it, including a claim that it will cause rape. Rock, Paper Shotgun responds. FOX responds to the response. RPS responds to the response to the response, with a summary of the debacle so far.
It's Only Rape if They Say So House Republicans decide to fight abortion access by redefining rape.
In an action "unprecedented in the democratic world" Moshe Katsav, the eighth President of Israel, has been convicted of rape. The former President is expected to appeal the conviction, which carries a minimum penalty of four years in prison. There is little sympathy for Moshe Katsav on a day that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu described as "a sad day for the State of Israel and its residents." The Jerusalem Post is left with one question: Should the plaques come down?
The House of Sharing is a place for the Halmoni to to live together and heal the wounds of the past while educating the future generations of the suffering they survived.The View From Over Here details her visit to the House of Sharing, a therapeutic group home and museum for surviving "comfort women", who were systematically raped by the Japanese military during World War II. The museum displays art for and by the survivors. Via Ask a Korean. [more inside]
Arrest warrants have been issued for wikileaks founder Julian Assange. He is wanted on suspicion of rape, sexual molestation and unlawful coercion - charges he denies. The warrants follow a detention order issued on Thursday by the Stockholm District Court after a request from Sweden's Director of Prosecution, Marianne Ny. [more inside]
The Case of the Vanishing Blonde
After a woman living in a hotel in Florida was raped, viciously beaten, and left for dead near the Everglades in 2005, the police investigation quickly went cold. But when the victim sued the Airport Regency, the hotel’s private detective, Ken Brennan, became obsessed with the case: how had the 21-year-old blonde disappeared from her room, unseen by security cameras? The author follows Brennan’s trail as the P.I. worked a chilling hunch that would lead him to other states, other crimes, and a man nobody else suspected. [printer-friendly version; behind-the-scenes video; via]
Jillian Lauren recently wrote a book about her experiences as a harem girl in Brunei. LA Weekly also went in-depth into her story.> [more inside]
Rape used as a tool of war: 200 women gang-raped near Congo base U.N. says. UN Chief outraged, FWIW. All links to news articles, but not for the weak of stomach.
In 2004 then 19 year old Sara Reedy was raped at gunpoint. Six months later, she was jailed for false complaint. Today, a federal appeals court reinstated her lawsuit against the police detective who orchestrated her arrest. [more inside]
Sabbar Kashur has been convicted of "rape by deception" after having consensual sex with an Israeli woman who believed he was a "Jewish bachelor looking for a long-term relationship." Reports from Jerusalem Post and Al Jazeera. Haaretz asks if this conviction sets a dangerous precedent for future cases. Al Jazeera's English-language Israel/Palestine blogger Sherine Tadros argues the 18-month conviction is racist.
Police in Orlando, Florida, frustrated with an "epidemic" of false allegations of rape, threaten arrest for all future false reports. The problems of this Florida community reflect research that shows a disproportionately high rate of false accusations of rape relative to other crimes, though studies on the issue are far from uniform, and frequently the center of controversy. [more inside]
Society teaches 'Don’t get raped' rather than 'Don’t rape' "When Stevens reads articles about drunk driving, the police are quoted telling people to stop drinking and driving. But when she reads articles about sexual assault, there is no warning telling would-be attackers not to rape. Instead, the authorities tell potential victims to take precautions." [more inside]
Living with the Enemy. "Applying the ideas of Holocaust survivor Jean Améry to present day Rwanda, our author argues that reconciliation after genocide is just another form of torture."
Toothed female condom unveiled in South Africa. South African Dr. Sonnet Ehlers was on call one night four decades ago when a devastated rape victim walked in. Her eyes were lifeless; she was like a breathing corpse. "She looked at me and said, 'If only I had teeth down there,'" recalled Ehlers, who was a 20-year-old medical researcher at the time. "I promised her I'd do something to help people like her one day." [more inside]
Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs) are registered nurses who have special training and experience in forensic evidence collection (conducting “rape kits”) and survivor-centered care. They also increasingly conduct forensic examinations on suspects accused of sexual assault(PDF). There is evidence that, through this work, SANE programs increase the prosecution rates of sexual assault cases. However, as a result of a recent Supreme Court Case, Crawford v. Washington, the role of SANEs is being increasingly curtailed(behind a pay wall). [more inside]
Provoking pro-choice advocates, Oklahoma passed two highly restrictive abortion laws on Tuesday. One (rtf file) requires doctors to show women an ultrasound of their fetus and point out its physical characteristics — even if the patient was impregnated through rape or incest. The second (rtf file) stipulates that doctors cannot be sued if they decide to lie to an expectant mother regarding her baby's birth defects. A third requires clinics to post signs telling patients they cannot be forced to have an abortion. The first law prompted an immediate lawsuit from Tulsa's only abortion clinic. [more inside]
Amy's uncle started abusing her when she was four years old. Depictions of her abuse are "one of the most popular and readily available kiddie porn videos on the Internet." Her lawyer has a novel - and apparently successful - strategy for recovering compensation: use the theory of joint liability to sue everyone with a copy of the video.
James Stipe, a Marine, allegedly posed as his ex-girlfriend to post an ad on Craigslist seeking an “aggressive man with no concern for women.” The woman was later raped in her home. [more inside]
"When the day's activities include the likelihood of getting your brains shot out, maybe a little slap and tickle - while not desirable - is not the end of the world."
The New York Times examines several reports of sexual harassments and assaults on women in the US Military. In the article's comments, current and former troops chime in to suggest that this is an inevitable result of including women in combat zones. [more inside]
A nine-month investigation by the Center for Public Integrity reveals that student victims of sexual assaults "face a depressing litany of barriers that often either assure their silence or leave them feeling victimized a second time." [more inside]
Everything you never wanted to know about the American prison-industrial complex. Part 2: Prison Nation.
Jamie Leigh Jones alleges she was drugged and gang-raped by co-workers at Camp Harper in Iraq while employed by KBR. As explained by Senator Al Franken in this youtube clip, Ms. Jones had signed a contract requiring binding arbitration of employment related disputes. Sen. Franken introduced Amendment 2588, which would prohibit any use of Federal funds for Federal contractors that require such agreements. The amendment passed 68-30 (roll call). [more inside]
Schrödinger’s Rapist: or a guy’s guide to approaching strange women without being maced.
An article in an art-related blog recently mentioned a new installation by a Columbus, Ohio conceptual artist named Richard Whitehurst: an exhibit reachable only by a tunnel, growing progressively narrower, with the artist waiting to rape anybody who attempted to pass. [more inside]
To jump straight into it, what made you decide to make a game involving rape? Inspiration was mostly personal, I’ve known a few girls who have been through similar situations, which sparked the concept. As far as the experience, I wanted to inspire emotion in the player, even if its vile and disgusting.Edmund is game designer Paul Greasley's contribution to indie PC gaming web site TIGSource's competition's adult section. Gamers react. [more inside]
Sydney radio station 2dayFM earned the ire and backlash of the Australian public - rape counsellors, Australian media, and Community Services ministers - after an on-air stunt by morning crew Kyle and Jackie O went horribly wrong. During their regular "lie detector" segment, a 14-year-old girl was interrogated by the hosts and her mother over her sexual history, against her will, and revealed that she had been raped at 12 on air (warning: possibly triggering audio clip embedded in news article). [more inside]
The tragic story of Timothy Cole who was sentenced to 25 years in prison for a rape he didn't commit, and died because of inadequate health care in prison. He was recently posthumously exonerated based on confessions of the guilty man and DNA evidence.
Back in the late Pleistocene epoch 100,000 years ago, the 2000 book contended, men who carried rape genes had a reproductive and evolutionary edge over men who did not: they sired children not only with willing mates, but also with unwilling ones, allowing them to leave more offspring (also carrying rape genes) who were similarly more likely to survive and reproduce, unto the nth generation. That would be us. And that is why we carry rape genes today. The family trees of prehistoric men lacking rape genes petered out. Newsweek's Sharon Begley examines evolutionary psychology and some of its most controversial theories (and how they are being rethought) in Don't Blame The Caveman.