If Congress is unable to meet its December 13 deadline to address the sequester, the struggle for low-income domestic violence survivors
to access safe housing will intensify.
Austin Smith Clem, who only received probation for repeatedly raping his teenage neighbor, will receive a new sentence, following intense public pressure on Judge James Woodruff to issue a more appropriate punishment.
Though the National Defense Authorization Act will be passed with no amendments, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand has also introduced the Military Justice Improvement Act, which would remove prosecution of sexual assault from the military chain of command, as a stand-alone bill, and she says she will continue to fight for its passage.
If HB 726—the bill designed to redefine child abuse in Pennsylvania—is signed, it will be the first of more than a dozen bills expected to be signed into law that came out of the evaluation following the arrest of former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, who was convicted of 45 charges of abusing ten boys.
The only thing about the Jameis Winston case that is clear is that nothing about the case is clear. It is now a statistic in a sea of such statistics, another example that our justice system and society at large are ill-equipped to handle sexual assault cases and the damage they do to everyone involved.
When journalists report that a man was arrested and charged with domestic violence, it sounds far less menacing than reporting that he was arrested for beating his partner bloody or punching her until she lost consciousness.
Three months have passed since Swarthmore College introduced a centralized sexual assault and harassment reporting system, meant to rectify the many issues exposed in two federal complaints alleging the school has mishandled sexual assault cases on campus. But not everyone is happy with the new system.
Florida State University star quarterback Jameis Winston was recently accused of raping a fellow student. Football culture clouds our ability to see him as anything other than a famous kid with amazing athletic skills, while rape culture demands that we mistrust the victim, question her credibility, and try to poke holes in her story.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s renewed push comes on the heels of a new poll reporting that six in ten Americans support letting independent prosecutors, rather than the chain of command, decide whether to prosecute cases of sexual assault and other serious non-military crimes.
We should be outraged about McBride’s death, and many people have been, channeling their anger into blog posts and online petitions. But many of the people who have commented on the story with their hearts in the right place have gotten two key facts of the case wrong—and those misrepresented facts could have dangerous consequences.