Tag Archives: Sexual Abuse

I Believe Dylan Farrow

Dylan Farrow wrote another op ed, this time in the LA Times. Please read it.

Even bad reviews of this man’s movies are press. Get Wonder Wheel off of all screens. Delete all references to it. Cancel his production deals. Replace him with one of any number of visionary women directors whose talents have gone too long ignored.

Sever him from our collective consciousness.

As I said, rape culture is rapists making our culture.

Get Woody Allen out of our culture.

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Tis the Season, The #metoo Season

Just about all women I know have gone about their dailies, walking down the street, talking to a colleague at a conference bar, filing some paperwork, and had an anvil fall on their heads: I am not a person. I’m a collection of parts to be used by others. I am breasts and a vagina, and sometimes also an ass.

My deepest wish for this chaotic #metoo season is that our culture finally understands the depth of trauma sexual harassment incurs. That we stop making women feel like they should, if they’re strong and good and right enough, shake it off, suck it up, and hold it in. That their violation wasn’t as bad as other women’s, so they don’t need to demand their right to bodily autonomy, nor loudly protest its abrogation. Continue reading

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Pay Up, Dude

People are apparently concerned about the proximity between Harvey Rapist Weinstein and Democratic donors. Dude can’t use his fundraising capacity and history (coughcoughHRCcoughcough) as any kind of credibility for anything. But. Dude can pay the F up. He can pay and pay and pay and pay. He can pay to improve economic justice. He can pay to expand health care services for women. He can pay to end gerrymandering. He can pay to elect lefty women to office.

Can he pay to get more women of color into executive and starring roles in film and TV? Without raping or attempting to rape them? Without their sexuality being any part of their professional, creative contributions to works of art? Yes. He can.

He can pay and pay and pay. And pay. He can’t pay enough. Let him pay.

Let’s also maybe jail him too. Thanks.

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When Writing Teachers Read NY Times Op-Eds

I have told students for 10 years.

I have witnessed its verity for 15 years.

I have practiced it for 20 years. Or tried to.

Strong, clear writing indicates strong, clear thinking.

Sputtering, erroneous, ranty writing—especially from one who for several decades has made a fat living with his writing—indicates sputtering, erroneous, ranty thinking.

I believe Dylan Farrow anyway. But from a purely rhetorical perspective, she wins.

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Good News for Women

And everyone who cares about eliminating unwanted pregnancies.

Plan B is now available over the counter, no matter how old a womanly customer is!!!!!! So, you know, a 15 year-old who made a mistake or whose condom broke or who was raped or whatever—really, I don’t care why she needs it—can get what she needs without finding a doctor to get her a prescription within the 36 hours of potential conception.

In related news, I came across this fantastic infographic on how to teach kids body safety and sexual safety. Send it to all your friends!


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More on Child Abuse

Hey friends, I don’t have time to write a true follow-up to yesterday’s contemplations about the motives behind child abuse.

So here are two additional articles that came out today on the topic.

A few salient points: when people think of pedophilia and sexual abuse of children, they are generally not thinking about the so-common-it-could-be-routine sexual abuse of children within families. AKA incest.

Instead, they are thinking of the sensationalized but actually rare creepy dudes who are sexually attracted to pre-pubescent kids and motivated to kidnap kids from malls and playgrounds and such. The Law and Order SVU stuff. That doesn’t happen NEARLY AS MUCH as abuse of children by family members.

Here are some statistics that should be familiar to us all, but aren’t, either because they’re too mind-boggling to be absorbed easily, or because they’re not publicized enough. One in three-to-four girls, and one in five-to-seven boys are sexually abused before they turn 18, an overwhelming incidence of which happens within the family. These statistics are well known among industry professionals, who are often quick to add, “and this is a notoriously underreported crime.”

Reporters don’t specify, but I’d bet that most adults who rape children in their family are not, in fact, looking at child pornography. They are not motivated by sexuality. They are motivated by other desires. Anger, rage, control, the dark stuff we all feel but we don’t go and beat on kids to deal with it.

One in three to four girls. One in five to seven boys.

And that stat does not include physical abuse of children, because we tend to treat sexual abuse differently for reasons that are, frankly, unclear to me, but that’s another post.

What to do about it all? I’m throwing my hands up here. I don’t know. But I’d sure love a load of research money to uncover some causes (straight up inequity, across the board, as I was wondering yesterday?) and freakin STOP THIS FROM HAPPENING.

Maybe money equivalent to the money we spend researching illnesses that affect as many people. What, like cancer?

What illnesses affect nearly a third of our population? More, if we count in physical abuse. And partner violence. Much more.

That’s a lot of people. Our people. We need to do better.

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