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Entries in rape (10)

Tuesday
Jun112013

Reports of Rampant Use of Prostitutes In State Dept Security | Israeli Judge Resigns After Saying "Some Girls Enjoy Rape" 

1.CBS News on Monday uncovered documents suggesting that the State Department may have covered up allegations that employees engaged in activities ranging from soliciting prostitutes to obtaining narcotics from an “underground drug ring.”

The memo, reported by CBS News’ John Miller, cited eight specific examples, including allegations that a State Department security official in Beirut “engaged in sexual assaults” with foreign nationals hired as embassy guards and the charge and that members of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s security detail “engaged prostitutes while on official trips in foreign countries” — a problem the report says was “endemic.”

2.Maj. Gen. Margaret H. Woodward has been named as the new director of the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office within the Air Force. Woodward has served in the Air Force since 1983 and was most recently commander of the 89th Airlift Wing, which includes responsibility for the President’s Air Force One. She replaces Lt. Col. Jeff Krusinski, himself charged with sexual assault.

3. The Obama Administration announced on Monday that it will follow court orders, allowing the most popular morning after pill, Plan B, to be available over the counter to women of all ages, dropping its appeal of a federal court order.

The Justice Department had been fighting no age restrictions on Plan B One-Step without a prescription, going against the recommendations of its own FDA, medical professionals nationwide and women’s rights advocates who support Obama. In a letter to Judge Edward R. Korman of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, the administration said it would comply with his demands.

4. Salon profiles the involvement of documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras’s in the revelations about U.S. government surveillance. Poitras is a MacArthur genius grantee who was nominated for an Oscar for 2006′s “My Country, My Country” on the impact of the Iraq War on ordinary Iraqis, the first of a trilogy of documentaries about American post-9/11 policies. The second documentary, “The Oath,” is followed by one in the works about whistle-blowers.

Laura Poitras is “one of the bravest and most brilliant people I’ve ever met,” Glenn Greenwald tells Salon.

5. Israeli Minister of Justice Tzipi Livni commented on the resignation of Israeli Judge Emeritus Nissim Yeshaya from his post as chairman of an appeals committee, after his courtroom comment that “some girls enjoy rape”.

“The judge announced his retirement and this is the right and fitting thing to do in this serious case,” said Livni. “Only this way, will the public’s faith in the justice system be restored. This wasn’t just some expression, but an invalid and twisted perception that women have fought for years, that lays the blame on the rape victim. Such a statement from the mouth of judge may, even if unintentionally, give legitimacy rape to warped minds.”

Thursday
Apr112013

Eden Foods Files Suit Against Contraception Mandate, Citing Birth Control As Immoral | G8 Takes On Rape As War Crime

French Roast News

Anne is reading …

Eden Foods Says Contraception Is Murder & Immoral

Salon drops the bombshell that Eden Foods CEO and founder, Michael Potter, is seeking in court to deny employees the right to contraception as part of Obamacare. Potter objects to contraception and argues that the contraception mandate violates his rights under the First Amendment, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the Administrative Procedure Act. 

Eden Foods also supports personhood amendments, believing that the rights of a fertilized egg are equal to those of the breast-feeding mom with three kids and an adoring husband who is eating those chips. Eden also believes de facto that this same woman should die in a Catholic hospital emergency room, rather than save her life — if such action could possibly harm her zygote or embryo. Salon continues:

Eden Foods, which did not respond to a request for comment, says in its filing that the company believes of birth control that “these procedures almost always involve immoral and unnatural practices.” The complaint also says that “Plaintiffs believe that Plan B and ‘ella’ can cause the death of the embryo, which is a person.” (Studies show that neither Plan B nor Ella interfere with fertilization, which is the Catholic definition of the beginning of life, if not the medical one. In other words, not the death of an embryo. Also, at that stage, it’s a zygote, not an embryo — let alone a “person.”) The filing also said that “Plaintiff Eden Foods’ products, methods, and accomplishments are described by critics as: tasteful, nutritious, wholesome, principled, unrivaled, nurturing, pure.”

Under no circumstances will Eden Foods ever work its way into my kitchen again — and I’ve bought plenty of their products over the years. ~ Anne

G8 Acts on Rape in War

Hosted by British Foreign Secretary William Hague, who invited humanitarian Angelina Jolie to join the G8 ministers at today’s meeting in London, the ministers agreed to set up an international framework for investigating and prosecuting rape” while making no provisions for amnesties ever for sexual violence in peace treaties. 

Hague called the use of rape as a war tactic “the slave trade of our generation.”

Jolie, who is the UN special envoy for refugees, was joined by the the UN special representative on sexual violence in conflict, Zainab Bangura.

Hague and Jolie announced a USD 35.4 million international agreement for action against sexual violence in war zone. 

“Our goal must be a world in which it is inconceivable that thousands of women, children and men can be raped in the course of a conflict, because an international framework of deterrence and accountability makes it impossible,” Hague told his fellow G8 foreign ministers from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia and the US in the run-up to the annual summit in Lough Erne, Northern Ireland in June.

Shocking Anti-Rape Bra

Three Indian engineering students led by Manisha Mohan, an engineering student at SRM University in Chennai, have developed ‘anti-rape’ lingerie in response to the brutal gang rape in Delhi. Mohan calls the bra SHE ‘Society Harnessing Equipment’.  

The garments are wired with pressure sensors and equipped with an “electric-shock circuit board” which delivers up to 82 shocks when the garments detect unwanted force. Using a GPS system, the lingerie is also designed to send an alert to parents or police. 

The students say that the inside of the garments are insulated with polymer — with a circuit placed near the bosom “because in the attempt of rape or roadside-eve-teasing, as per survey, women are attacked first on their bosom.”

A website for the project reveals what looks like what looks like a white nightgown with wiring between the breasts. Mohan cited India’s recent Delhi and Bangalore rape tragedies as inspirations for the development of the product.

Mohan explains that a woman can switch on an electric switch attached to the waist of the garment when she feels she is in potential danger. “When I know that there is no harm, I switch it off,” Mohan says. “But when I’m moving out of my office late at night, I could turn it on.” When the garment is in “on” mode, the sensors would be able to detect force from pinching or squeezing and unleash the shock, writes The Daily Beast.

In a related story, Forbes magazine writes ‘The Culture of Rape’ and a Smart Phone App: Activism Meets Technology in India

Created by a team led by Filmmaker Nancy Schwartzman, whose 2009 film The Line plumbed the controversial areas of sexuality and consent, debuted the Circle of 6 app in the United States last year 

“Basically, we saw the number of downloads in India increase by 1,000 percent after the gang rape in New Delhi – making India the No. 2 spot outside the U.S. for downloads,” said Schwartzman. “We were motivated to translate to Hindi and find the best on the ground resources in New Delhi we could find for women in need.”

Saturday
Mar162013

UN Passes Historic Code To Combat Violence Against Women | Why Philadelphia Women Need Earned Sick Days Bill

 View chart larger.

1. Moms and Dads 1965-2011: Roles Converge but ‘traditional’ realms remain. Fifty years after Betty Friedan’s book ‘The Feminine Mystique’, Americans remain conflicted about what is best for children. In this recent Pew Research survey of 2,511 adults and an analysis of the American Time Use Survey (ATUS), only 16% say it’s best for a young child to have a mother who works full time. 42% of adults say mothers working part-time is ideal, and one-third say that mothers shouldn’t work outside of the home. 

Perhaps due to financial pressures, the number of women wanting to work full time with children has increased from 20% in 2007 to 32% in 2012. 

Note that in 1997, 32% of mothers said they wanted to work full time. 

2. Senators are considering removing military commanders from rape cases. Hearings on rape in the military began on Wednesday, by the Senate Armed Services subcomittee chaired by New York Democratic Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. 

Testifying before the senate committee, Rebekhah Havrilla reported seeking support and guidance from a military chaplain about her rape.  The chaplain told her “that the rape was God’s will and that God was trying to get my attention so that I would go back to church,” she stated. 

The hearings on sexual assault in the military are the first in a decade. 

“The Pentagon estimates that 19,000 incidents of sexual assault occurred in 2010 alone, with only 13.5 percent of those reported and an even smaller percentage, 191 cases, convicted. In 2011, Gillibrand said, only 240 cases proceeded to trial”, writes The Daily Beast.

The military estimates that about 56% of the victims are men — a fact not widely reported. Presently commanders decide whether or not a military case will be pursued. 

3. When 5,000 women marched up DC’s Pennsylvania Avenue, demanding the vote, their New Woman clothing sent a clear message.

 Advancing a stereotype that burst on the scene around 1890, this ‘New Woman’ was middle class, bolder, more active and worldly, and definitely more outspoken than mom’s generation, says Alden O’Brien of the Daughters of the American Revolution Museum. 

The Atlantic investigates the loosening up of women’s fashions and end of the brief fad ‘hobble skirts’ that kept women from getting anywhere fast. Across the Atlantic, Coco Chanel was embarking on an illustrious career, ultimately challenging women to give up the ‘illogical’ designs of male couturiers. From the woman who gave us trousers and jersey fabric, there was no room for waist cinchers or padded bras.  

Related: most people don’t know that Coco Chanel also gave the world suntans. Read on in AOC Body

4. UN passes historic code to combat violence against women. In an almost miraculous event attended by some 6,000 non-government groups from around the world, a deadlock between Western countries on the one hand and Muslim countries plus the Vatican on the other, was broken and agreement reached around language stating that violence against women could not be justified by “Any custom, tradition or religious consideration.”

Michelle Bachelet, the head of the UN women’s agency and former president of Chile called “historic”. The Muslim Brotherhood opposed the document along with Catholic countries. 

The head of Egypt’s delegation, politician and diplomat Mervat Tallawy, surprised delegates when she ignored the Brotherhood and announced that Egypt would join consensus. “I believe in women’s cause. I don’t take money from the government. I work voluntarily. If they want to kick me out they can. But I will not change my belief in women,” she said. “Women are the slaves of this age. This is unacceptable, and particularly in our region.”

5. We update readers on the dire situation for poor women in Texas, as Texas officials proceed with their crusade to defund Planned Parenthood.

Mother Jones reports that Texas is now funding 176 fewer health clinics for poor women than it did in 2011. 53 health clinics in Texas have been forced to close with budget cuts. 39 of those clinics have no affiliation with Planned Parenthood and zero performed abortions. 

200,000 low-income women in Texas have already lost or soon will lose access to birth control, cancer screenings and other critical preventative care. Before these cuts, half of all pregnancies in Texas were unplanned. 

It’s estimated that an additional 24,000 births will occur in 2014-15 costing taxpayers up to $273 million — unless that safety net is abolished in the state of Texas as well. 

See chart larger

In Sisterhood

Soraya Chemaly

Steubenville: We’re Sick and Tired Of Rape Being Treated Lika An Unavoidable Joke Huffington Post

Yesterday, in our fatiguing chronicling of rape, the Steubenville rape trial began.  ABC reported that two boys “took liberties” (such an interesting turn of phrase if you think about it) with a drunk girl and now face rape charges. Attorneys for the defendants, two star football players (as everyone is intent on reminding us), argued that the boys did not rape a drunk 16-year old girl, whom they performed sexual acts on, because she “didn’t say no.”  The lawyers are asking the court to believe that there was no nonconsensual contact during a long night in which these boys (just like these boys) put their fingers into the girl’s vagina, attempted to have her perform oral sex (she couldn’t hold her mouth open), allegedly urinated on her and were photographed dragging her around by her hands and feet. As one of the boys was quoted saying in a tonally rape-friendly media piece, “It just felt like she was coming on to me.”  Which, of course, is clear license to treat a living girl like an inflatable silicon sex doll.

If traditional coverage and similar cases in the recent past are any indication, what will inevitably evolve in the next few weeks is a media narrative about these boys, their football aspirations, their dashed hopes, and their basic all-American Boy Goodness. 

Anne Doyle

 

It’s Sheryl Sandberg’s Courage To Raise Her Voice That’s Not News, Not Leaning In Forbes Woman

And thank you, Sheryl,  for doing something even more courageous: bringing the “F” word out of the closet. When was the last time you heard a nationally-known businesswoman, particularly one of Forbes’ 20 Most Powerful Women In Business, describe herself as a feminist?

Caryn Hunt

Why Philadelphia Women Need The Earned Sick Days Bill AOC Women

Four out of five of the lowest income workers in Philadelphia – an estimated 210,000 employees, primarily in the hospitality and care-giving sectors, a majority of them women – have no provision for paid sick days. So if they or a family member gets sick, tough luck. Many workers that do have paid sick days are not able to use them to care for family members. When workers are not allowed to take sick days, illness spreads, forcing formerly healthy people, people who were simply eating lunch, or whose child is friends with a child who should have stayed home, to have to use their own sick days – if they’ve got them.

The Earned Sick Days Bill, Bill 130004, would mandate that Philadelphia employers with five or more employees allow their workers to accrue time that can be used toward paid sick days off. It works like this: for every forty hours on the job, you become eligible for one hour of paid sick leave. For small businesses, there is a cap at four days per year.