The Night Belongs to Us

April 8, 2009 § Leave a comment

Next Thursday, NYC’s own Barnard and Columbia will have a Take Back the Night rally, march, and speakout. I truly wish I could be there – it’s public school holiday and I’m traveling with my family – but I encourage everyone who can to go.


April 16th, 2009
March starts at 9pm, Barnard Gates (117th & Broadway, NYC)
Speakout starts at 11pm, LeFrak Gym, Barnard College

“Tonight is a night of survival, in the most active sense of the word”

The mission of Take Back the Night March and Speakout is to break the silence about sexual violence by inviting the Morningside Heights community to gather together, as survivors, allies, family, friends, neighbors and strangers, to support each other and protest the violence that affects all of us. The march is an opportunity to re-claim the streets of New York City, the neighborhood of Morningside Heights, and the Columbia campus as safe spaces. After the march, we host a Speakout, during which community members speak anonymously about their experiences. The march is wheelchair accessible. Free childcare will be provided. ASL signer will be present during pre-march rally.

For more information contact

I have never been physically harmed by a partner – but more than one in ten of my peers has. I have never known the shame of being pressured into oral sex or intercourse – but one in four of my classmates has. I am not a victim of rape – but one in six of my sisters is.

The battle is ours to win, and the night is ours to take.

Via Feministe.

Good News for Members of the Hassidic Community (and everyone else)

April 2, 2009 § Leave a comment

Last night on the news, I saw an exciting piece about a new branch of the NYPD that will cater specifically to the needs and concerns of NYC Hassidic Jews who have experienced some form of sexual abuse. Breaking the silence can be particularly hard in the Hassidic community, especially when a victim is trying to implicate a religious leader. Hopefully this new department will be able to effectively navigate the complexities of our Hassidic community so that more men and women can break free of their abusers without the fear of losing their religion or tight-knit community. 

The man who pushed for this program, whose name I didn’t have time to take down, is a former Hassidic who was abused by his rabbi at age eight. Unfortunately, by the time he came forward, his abuser was legally protected by virtue of the amount of time that had lapsed between the event and the accusation. Whack. The abusive rabbi still teaches children in Brooklyn!  

But other than that disheartening legality, the story seems like good news for everyone who loves children, anti-violence, and cultural tolerance. Woopee!

I’ve got a Monster headache

March 28, 2009 § 5 Comments

monsterassaultYou know what sucks? When you’re waiting in a deli while your boyfriend buys a Red Bull and you notice this gem of a beverage. And you realize that these marketers probably spent a great deal of money doing research to decide what to call their latest product. And that a drink named ASSAULT must have appealed to their target audience, or else the word wouldn’t be slapped onto millions of cans with a camouflage background.

Once more, with feeling: stop using violent words (and imagery) to sell your product. There’s a problem when I hear people looking into the cooler and saying, “Oh man, I would kill for some Assault right now” or “I can’t get enough Assault!”

The idea of assault gives me energy, all right – energy to get really fucking angry and give this company a piece of my mind. Tell Monster to stop making violent crimes lively and trendy.

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