Feminism | Posted by Sabrina N on 07/21/2014
A few weeks ago, Jada, a 16-year-old girl from Houston, Texas, went to a house party and was given a drink by the host. Little did she know that the drink was drugged, and that she would wake up later with no memories of what had just happened.
After Jada went unconscious, she was raped. The rape was recorded via pictures and videos, which were then put on social media. When Jada woke up later she had no idea what had just happened to her. That is, until she checked social media and found alarming tweets, pictures and videos. In a horrific turn of events, her assault was then turned into a meme, where people mimicked her pose– unconscious, sprawled out on the floor, partially unclothed– and then took a …
Feminism | Posted by Maya Richard-Craven on 07/7/2014
What’s Your ‘Weapon Of Choice?’
American photographer Richard Johnson brings attention to the invisible effects of verbal abuse in his series, "Weapon of Choice." (Weapon of Choice - Hurtwords.com / Facebook)
It was not your typical walk of shame, like the kind you see in high school movies after someone loses their virginity. Instead, it was me, an athletic-looking African-American girl, sobbing my way downtown, just on the border of USC and gang territory.
A fellow Trojan, who I had been talking to for a year, had originally said I could stay over at his place.
“I don’t care what I said. I lied.”
“It’s 4 am and we are in South Central LA, you are just going to kick me out… Can’t I just sleep on your floor?”
“What are you still doing …
Feminism | Posted by Alice W on 06/30/2014
Why Colleges Need To Fund Sexual Health Counseling
Like many (if not most) teens across the country, my high school health textbook had almost no practical sex ed information. It had a abstinence contract, pages and pages on why we should wait and one little box on the failure rates of birth control. At the end of my senior year I realized few of my friends knew the correct way to put on a condom and had to hold a covert workshop during school.
The health education policies in North Carolina, where I’m from, make it impossible for us to learn about sex in an honest, healthy way in high school. For many, college is the first time they get real sex education. And yet, come next year, the University of North Carolina’s sexual health counseling may …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Carolina G on 06/9/2014
On YouTube Celebrities and Blurred Consent
Once considered niche performers, YouTube vloggers are increasingly jumping off our computer screens and becoming celebrities in the real-world sense. They play concerts around the world, have clothing lines and makeup collections, have meet ups that are attended by thousands, and make millions of dollars (case in point: Justin Bieber). YouTube as a company, instead of solely providing a platform for this unique celebrity formation, has recently decided to more actively participate in perpetuating this new celebrity culture: they are currently featuring some of their stars, such as Michelle Phan, Rosanna Pansino, and Bethany Mota, in nation-wide advertisements.
This new type of celebrity is predicated on the idea of accessibility. Unlike the movie stars we only access via orchestrated interviews, YouTube stars seem far more accessible. The entry-barrier to …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Chloe H on 06/2/2014
*Trigger Warning* Why Aren’t Women Safe in College and the Military?
While women in the United States still undeniably have a long way to go before we achieve equality, we have made progress in various realms. For example, in terms of education, Oberlin College of Ohio became the first American college to admit women in 1833. In 1948, Congress passed the Women’s Armed Services Integration Act granting women permanent military status and veterans benefits. Both of these acts indicated unprecedented opportunities for women to influence and contribute to the country in a way in which they’d been previously barred.
And influence and contribute they have: American women have done fantastic things to serve their country and people as college graduates and soldiers. However, equality on paper is hardly the same thing as equality in real life. One of the largest obstacles …
Feminism | Posted by Katie Koestner on 05/7/2014
An Open Letter to TBTN Event Holders
I was 18 years old when I joined you. Many of you had been holding Take Back the Night events in rain or snow, amid hecklers, for years. Some of you were already making your way to radical, already past liberal. Some of you were done with patriarchy. Separatists. Some of you had carried broomsticks with tampons affixed on top. You had dyed your dormroom bedsheets black so that you could march as witches through campus. I didn’t know how much I would adore your gumption.
Some of you were not yet born. Maybe you found TBTN when a night/day kicked you in the gut-heart-head. You heard about us and showed up to see what this TBTN thing was, to see if you fit in.
It was the …
Feminism | Posted by Erik C on 03/11/2014
What Many Men Don’t Understand About Sexual Assault
Warning: This piece contains material about sexual assault that may be upsetting to some readers.
Sexual assault wasn’t a problem on my radar until it happened to me. But two and a half years ago, I was assaulted over the course of two nights, in a foreign country, while involuntarily intoxicated. This led to chronic clinical insomnia, job loss, a suicide attempt, 16 months of severe clinical depression, and a year off from school with short stints of homelessness and alcoholism.
So, since then, I haven’t really had a choice but to think a tremendous amount about sexual assault and its consequences. I can’t, by any means, know what sexual assault is like from a woman’s perspective, but I’ve talked to dozens, if not hundreds, of female survivors/victims (different people …
Awareness, Feminism | Posted by Ty S on 02/10/2014
Help the Obama Administration Fight Sexual Assault On College Campuses
Universities have a responsibility to protect students from violence, discrimination, harassment, and assault. When something violent happens to students on or off campus, universities have a responsibility to handle these cases in an appropriate way that keeps the campus community and the victim safe. Given this extremely basic responsibility that schools owe to their tuition-paying students, it’s incredible how frequently students’ rights are violated after reporting sexual assault. It’s incredible how incapable universities have been at protecting students who have been assaulted. It’s incredible how often victims of sexual assault also become victims of illegal institutionalized rape apologism.
In response to these universities’ failures to protect victims, there’s been a wave of students bringing their cases to the federal level. Victims across the country have been reporting their universities’ illegal …