Rape, Coverups, Bullying—Araoz, Acosta, Epstein

Another amazing week. US Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta resigned amid the Jeffrey Epstein sex scandal. Pressure mounted against Acosta as news trickled out that he'd allowed an incredibly lenient plea deal to go forward under his watch in Epstein's Florida trial years ago. And then an accusation of rape! Rape. The allegation of rape by a then, 14-15 year old girl, trumped Acosta's fall from grace. In a TODAY interview with Savannah Guthrie, included here, Jennifer Araoz shared … [Read more...]

Criminal injustice? R. Kelly & Other Celebrities in Court.

Among the big news stories this week, one's got crim injustice" written all over it in my humble opinion. Criminal Injustice R&B singer R. Kelly turned himself in to the Chicago police last night  after being indicted. He did so to answer charges of  10 counts of aggravated criminal sex abuse against four victims, three of them minors. Criminal sex abuse is the term for the what's also been called statutory rape. Robert S. Kelly, a native of Chicago, is a singer, songwriter, record … [Read more...]

#MeToo blinding us to reverse discrimination in the justice system?

Women in the #MeToo movement calling out sexual assault is big news now. That's great. But is there reverse discrimination in the justice system that favors women? Clare Foges claims there is. She recently wrote about its presence in the crim justice system in Britain. Foges was a speechwriter for former PM David Cameron at 10 Downing Street. As a result, she earned the title  "The Prime Minister's larynx/voice." (Interesting factoid—After university studies, Foges drove an ice-cream truck . . … [Read more...]

Male privilege, sex, and the fall of a cleft icon.

An op ed piece in Friday's Washington Post helped make up my mind re former congressman Trent Franks (R-Ariz.). The op ed author described a classic case of male privilege in action. The writer Melissa Richmond* is currently vice president of Running Start, an organization that encourages women to run for political office.   Richmond wrote that she thought she'd lost out on a career in politics after an encounter with Rep. Franks eight years ago. In her own words: I’ve always been proud … [Read more...]

Rape, male privilege, sentencing, and punishment.

An essay about rape and male privilege that's been widely circulated lately got my attention for sure. Not because so many women have been Weinsteined by Harvey who had gatekeeping power or raped by everyday men who were intimidating. But because I've been addressing similar issues in a book I'm writing. Several  of the real-life murderers in my memoir got away easy just as Amber Rose Carlson's rapist did. Amber Rose Carlson is a doctoral candidate in philosophy at Vanderbilt University who … [Read more...]

Male privilege and women in elevators.

So here's my first bit of advice to those of my male gender. Slow down or cross the street if you're following a woman walking ahead of  you in the middle of the night on a lonely street.   Male privilege and women in elevators. My current book deals with male privilege among other things. Last week I thought back to one of my earliest realizations of this phenomenon. Male privilege realization. I was old enough to be walking around my sleepy town at night —maybe age 15 or so. I … [Read more...]