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25 Abuse of Women News Articles
for September 2018
Click on the links below to get the full story from its source

9-21-18 Sex assault claim clouds Kavanaugh nomination
Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court was thrown into jeopardy this week, after a woman accused him of sexually assaulting her when they were both high schoolers. In an interview with The Washington Post, Christine Blasey Ford, a research psychologist in Northern California, described how a “stumbling drunk” Kavanaugh and his friend, Mark Judge, cornered her in a bedroom during a house party in suburban Maryland in the summer of 1982. Kavanaugh was a 17-year-old student at the elite Georgetown Preparatory School at the time of the alleged incident; Blasey was 15. Blasey said that Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed and attempted to take off her clothes, holding his hand over her mouth to keep her from screaming. “I thought he might inadvertently kill me,” Blasey, now 51, said. She wriggled free, she said, after Judge jumped on top of them, sending them tumbling. Kavanaugh, 53, adamantly denied the allegations, saying, “I did not do this back in high school or at any time.” Judge called the accusations “nuts,” adding, “I never saw Brett act that way.” (Webmaster's comment: The rush to get him elected is a rush to get it done before the truth comes out!)

9-21-18 Fast food: McDonald’s workers protest harassment
Hundreds of McDonald’s employees in 10 cities across the country went on strike this week, said Rachel Abrams in The New York Times. Employees rallied in cities such as Chicago, Kansas City, and St. Louis. At the St. Louis rally, workers chanted “Hold your burgers, hold your fries / Keep your hands off my thighs.” Staff called on the fast-food giant to protect employees from supervisors’ unwelcome advances and from retaliation against those who complain.

9-21-18 Brett Kavanaugh accuser sets out terms for testimony
The woman who accuses US Supreme Court pick Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault in 1982 has set out terms for her testifying before a Senate committee. Among the conditions, Christine Blasey Ford will not testify with Mr Kavanaugh in the room and wants him to testify first, her lawyer has said. It is unclear whether the committee will agree to all the terms. Judge Kavanaugh, 53, has repeatedly denied the allegations and has agreed to testify before the committee. It is the task of the Senate Judiciary Committee to approve the nomination of Judge Kavanaugh before it passes to the full Senate for a vote. The choice of a new justice for the Supreme Court is pivotal, as it often gives the final word on highly contentious laws and its nine judges have an immense impact on US political life. What are the conditions? They were spelled out by Prof Ford's lawyer, Debra Katz, in a telephone call with the committee on Thursday. The six conditions are:

  1. Christine Blasey Ford will not testify with Mr Kavanaugh in the room
  2. Wants him to testify first
  3. There can be no appearance before next Thursday. The committee's chairman Chuck Grassley had called for written testimony by this Friday. Ms Katz rejected this and said a demand for Prof Ford to appear on Monday would be a "deal breaker"
  4. Questions to be posed preferably by senators and not outside counsel
  5. Mark Judge, who is reported to have been a witness to the alleged assault, should be subpoenaed to appear
  6. Agrees to a public hearing but wants limits on the media coverage

(Webmaster's comment: Bottom Line: The Republicans want to verbally attack her and intiminate her on camera. She is to be treated as the guilty person just like all sexually assaulted women are.)

9-21-18 Why people can take years to report sexual assaults
A sex assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, which he denies, has some asking why the accuser waited decades to come forward. We don't know which of them is telling the truth. But two experts say such delays in reporting are common. Jim Hopper is a clinical psychologist and independent consultant, teaching associate in psychology, Harvard Medical School, and nationally recognised expert on psychological trauma. Vanessa Grigoriadis is the author of Blurred Lines: Rethinking Sex, Power and Consent on Campus.

9-20-18 Brett Kavanaugh: Sexual assault accuser 'needs more time'
The lawyer for a woman who accuses US Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault has said the Senate's "rush" to a hearing is "unnecessary". Lisa Banks says her client, Christine Blasey Ford, is willing to co-operate but wants a "full non-partisan investigation" ahead of her testimony. Prof Ford has been given until Friday to decide if she will testify. Judge Kavanaugh, 53, says the assault allegation, which dates back to his teenage years, is "completely false". President Donald Trump has again defended his nominee, saying it is very hard for him to imagine anything happened. Prof Ford and the Senate Judiciary Committee are engaged in a stand-off, and time is running out, the BBC's Gary O'Donoghue reports from Washington. The Republicans on the committee know they have to give her every opportunity to tell her story but they are adamant that this is not a matter for the FBI and that Democrats are using the case to simply stall the nomination process, our correspondent says. "Dr Ford was reluctantly thrust into the public spotlight only two days ago," Ms Banks said in a statement. "Fairness and respect for her situation dictate that she should have time to deal with this." The lawyer's statement repeats earlier reports of threats to Prof Ford and her family's safety, adding that she is "currently unable to go home". (Webmaster's comment: Kavanaugh's supporters have threatened to kill her and her family. Doesn't anyone realize how horrible that is? Is it any wonder she doesn't want to testify in a setting were some members support her being killed.)

9-20-18 3D-printed gun pioneer Cody Wilson charged with sexual assault
A Texas man who has played a central role in making 3D-printed weapons available has been charged with sexually assaulting an underage girl. A warrant was issued for Cody Wilson but he flew to Taiwan before he could be detained, police in Austin said. A 16-year-old girl alleged she was paid $500 (£380) to have sex with Mr Wilson at an Austin hotel, they said. Mr Wilson has been at the centre of a legal battle over publishing blueprints that instruct people on making a gun. Mr Wilson has not yet commented on the case and no lawyer has yet issued a statement. Austin Police Commander Troy Officer told a press briefing that a counsellor who had spoken to the girl informed police on 22 August that "that a juvenile female under the age of 17 had reported having sexual contact with a 30-year-old male". The legal age of consent in Texas is 17. Commander Officer said the girl met Mr Wilson through the website and had sex with him in a hotel on 15 August. Police confirmed the girl's story through "videotape and interviews", he said. The alleged crime is punishable by up to 20 years in prison. (Webmaster's comment: All these violence loving, gun loving, sexaul assault loving men are cut from the same cloth!)

9-19-18 Christine Blasey Ford: Kavanaugh accuser 'faces death threats'
The woman who accuses US Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of attempting to rape her will not testify to the Senate next week, her lawyer says. Christine Blasey Ford's attorney told CNN her client has been "deflecting death threats and harassment". Lawyer Lisa Banks said before her client goes to Congress, she wants an FBI investigation into Judge Kavanaugh. The nominee, who denies the claim, has met officials at the White House for a second day. Prof Ford, a psychology lecturer in California, has accused Judge Kavanaugh of drunkenly trying to remove her clothing in 1982 when they were both teenagers in a Washington DC suburb. She says he pinned her to a bed and clamped his hand over her mouth when she attempted to scream. Judge Kavanaugh, 53, has called the allegation "completely false". Prof Ford's legal team say they have written to the Senate Judiciary Committee declining its offer to testify. Her lawyer told CNN on Tuesday night: "It's premature to talk about a hearing on Monday because she [Prof Ford] has been dealing with the threats, the harassment and the safety of her family and that's what she's been focused on for the last couple of days." She said that since going public with her allegation in the Washington Post on Sunday, Prof Ford has been trying to work out where her family are going to sleep at night. The legal team's letter says that Prof Ford's family has been forced to move out of their home, her email has been hacked and she has been impersonated online. (Webmaster's comment: Death Threats for trying to tell the truth. The true nature of Kavanaugh's supporters is now apparent!)

9-19-18 French police investigate gang rape videos aired on Snapchat
French police are investigating what they say is the gang rape of a 19-year-old woman broadcast on social media. The victim was attacked by four men by a nightclub in the southern city of Toulouse, on Saturday night or Sunday morning, reports said. Videos of the incident, which appeared on Snapchat and Twitter on Monday, have been blocked by police after social media users reported it. Investigators have now identified the woman, who confirmed the attack. Prosecutors said there was no doubt that a crime was a committed. They were not yet sure if the victim had decided to file a report, but insisted "the investigation would take place whether there is a case or not." Police are now looking to identify at least four perpetrators, aged between 25 and 30, seen in the parking lot of a nightclub in Balma, a suburb east of Toulouse. According to media outlets that have watched the social media footage, the victim, who is visibly drunk, can be heard crying. Other voices, believed to be those of the attackers, clearly suggest they are taking part in sexual assault. Another clear voice warns the others: "Stop filming, it's a rape... it's a rape, it's a rape." The young woman, who is partly naked, is pulled by the hair, including by a suspect who repeatedly urges her to perform oral sex. Social media users were horrified by the images circulated online, and many reported them to the police's cyber crime division.

9-18-18 US surgeon and girlfriend suspected of multiple drug rapes
A California surgeon and his girlfriend have been charged with two sexual assaults, and investigators suspect there could be "hundreds" more victims. Grant William Robicheaux, 38, and Cerissa Laura Riley, 31, allegedly attacked two women they met at a bar and a restaurant in 2016. Prosecutors told the BBC "thousands and thousands" of videos of potential victims were on the defendants' phones. Investigators are trying to identify the women in the clips. At a news conference on Tuesday, Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas said the pair were suspected of using their "clean-cut" looks to lure targets into a false sense of security. "We believe the defendants used their good looks and charms to lower the inhibitions of their potential prey," he said, reports KTLA-TV. He added: "There are several videos where the women in the videos appear to be highly intoxicated beyond the ability to consent or resist and they are barely responsive to the defendants' sexual advances. "Based on this evidence we believe there might be many unidentified victims out there." Mr Robicheaux is an orthopaedic surgeon from Newport Beach, 45 miles (72km) south of Los Angeles. He once appeared on the Bravo cable network's reality TV show Online Dating Rituals of the American Male. Investigators say the pair worked "in tandem" to meet women at bars, drug them or coerce them to drink large amounts of alcohol, and then bring them back to Mr Robicheaux's apartment to be assaulted. Two women have alleged encounters with Mr Robicheaux and Ms Riley two years ago. The first said she met the pair at a restaurant on 10 April 2016 and was invited by them to a boat party. Once intoxicated, the 32-year-old was allegedly taken back to Mr Robicheaux's apartment and raped. She contacted Newport Beach police the following day and tested positive for a number of unspecified drugs, the prosecutor said. Both defendants are accused of rape by use of drugs in that case. On 2 October 2016, another woman said she woke up in Mr Robicheaux's apartment after a night of drinking, and screamed for help until his neighbours called police. That woman told police she had been drinking at a bar in Newport Beach with the couple until she lost consciousness. Both defendants are accused of sexual assault with intent to commit rape in that case. Investigators say they have recovered video of one of the two women being assaulted. Mr Robicheaux and Ms Riley are accused of possessing a large quantity of drugs, including GHB (considered a date-rape drug), psychedelic mushrooms, ecstasy and cocaine. Police said the illegal substances were found during a search of the surgeon's home in January 2018.

9-18-18 The truth about false assault accusations by women
Either Brett Kavanaugh or Christine Blasey Ford is lying. We don't know which one. Here's what we do know. According to various academic studies over the past 20 years, only 2-10% of rape accusations are fake (Prof Ford's lawyer says she believes this was attempted rape). Two to 10% is too many, but it is not a big proportion of the total. Fake rape accusations get a lot of attention. Both the Duke Lacrosse team case in 2006 and the alleged University of Virginia gang rape in 2014 were widely covered by the media. They were terrible miscarriages of justice - but they were not representative. False rape accusations very rarely lead to convictions or wrongful jail time. A useful article in Quartz by Sandra Newman points to research from the British Home Office showing that in the early 2000s, of the 216 cases that were classified as false allegations, only six led to an arrest. Of those, only two had charges brought against them and those two were found to be false. The idea that lots of men are going to prison because they've been falsely accused of rape isn't supported by the facts. Moreover, official figures suggest the number of rapes and sexual assaults which are never reported or prosecuted far outweighs the number of men convicted of rape because of fake accusations. Indeed it far outweighs the number of fake accusations, period. Figures from the US Bureau of Justice Statistics suggest only 35% of all sexual assaults are even reported to the police. It's also useful to look at what we know about the kind of people who make fake accusations to see if Prof Ford fits a pattern. According to Sandra Newman, every academic study on the issue finds that the most common type of fake accuser is actually a teenage girl trying to get out of trouble. Often it's her parents who report the "rape" attempt. The studies suggest the false accusation can often stem from something as absurd as finding an excuse for missing curfew. According to a 2017 report by the US National Institutes of Health, fake accusers "were primarily motivated by emotional gain. Most false allegations were used to cover up other behaviour such as adultery or skipping school". In many cases the fake accuser has a history of lying to authorities or committing fraud. She may well have a criminal record. (Webmaster's comment: It's all about blaming the woman so that men can continue to rape women!)

9-18-18 McDonald's workers strike over sexual harassment policy
Staff at McDonald's restaurants in 10 US cities will walk out on Tuesday over claims the fast food giant is not doing enough to prevent sexual harassment. The strike comes after 25 women filed complaints against the chain, alleging it failed to enforce company rules against abuse. The women said they were ignored after reporting incidents including groping, indecent exposure and lewd comments. McDonald's said there was "no place for harassment" at its restaurants. Organisers said the strike would target multiple restaurants in cities including Chicago, Los Angeles and Miami. It is thought several hundred staff will walk out. McDonald's has a company-wide sexual harassment policy but the protestors - who are backed by the Time's Up Legal Defense Fund - want to see improvements. They say procedures for responding to harassment complaints are inadequate and that all staff should undergo anti-harassment training. Since 2016, 25 McDonald's workers have filed complaints with the US National Labor Relations Board, alleging their reports of harassment were ignored, mocked or met with retaliation.

9-18-18 Kavanaugh and accuser to testify in Senate
The Senate has scheduled a public hearing on a sex assault claim against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh for next week. Judge Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who says he attacked her more than three decades ago, will both be able to testify. US President Donald Trump said earlier he expected "a little delay" to confirming his nominee. Judge Kavanaugh, 53, says the allegation is "completely false". He denies he was even at the 1982 high school party in question where his accuser, now a psychology professor in California, says he tried to rape her as his friend watched. The claim has jeopardised Judge Kavanaugh's formerly all-but certain-nomination for a lifetime job on the Supreme Court. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley confirmed next Monday's hearing in a statement. "As I said earlier, anyone who comes forward as Dr Ford has done deserves to be heard," said the Iowa Republican. Mr Grassley had earlier stopped short of calling for a public hearing, or for delaying the committee's vote on the nominee. The judge last week finished four days of hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee, and a vote on his confirmation had been planned for Thursday of this week. But Democrats demanded a delay in the vote in order to let the FBI investigate. Mr Grassley said the standard procedure would be for committee members to conduct telephone calls with both witnesses about their forthcoming testimony. But in a statement, the panel's Democrats refused to join in any phone call with Judge Kavanaugh.

9-17-18 Brett Kavanaugh: Republican senators call for vote delay
A number of Republicans have said the vote on US President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh, should be paused while allegations of sexual assault are properly heard. It comes after Christine Blasey Ford accused Mr Kavanaugh of attacking her in the early 1980s. Mr Kavanaugh denies the allegation, which emerged days before the Senate Judiciary Committee votes on the post. Prof Ford is willing to testify before the committee, her lawyer has said. And White House adviser Kellyanne Conway said Prof Ford should "not be insulted or ignored" and should testify under oath, although that would be up to the committee to decide. The Supreme Court is often the final word on highly contentious laws and its nine judges have an immense impact on US political life. If chosen for the lifetime appointment, Mr Kavanaugh would be expected to tilt the court's balance to the right. (Webmaster's comment: Their will be more accusations. A sexual predator cannot change its spots!)

9-14-18 Brett Kavanaugh denies sexual misconduct in high school
US President Donald Trump's Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh has denied an allegation of sexual misconduct during his high-school days. Reports say an unidentified woman claimed in a letter to Democrats that Mr Kavanaugh tried to force himself on her at a party in the early 1980s. Senate Democrats on Thursday disclosed that they had referred a complaint to federal investigators. The judge faces a confirmation vote to join the Supreme Court next week. In a statement on Friday, the appeals court judge said: "I categorically and unequivocally deny this allegation. I did not do this back in high school or at any time." The alleged incident took place when Mr Kavanaugh was a minor and student at Georgetown Preparatory School in Bethesda, Maryland. The woman - who asked not to be identified - was also a minor and a student at a nearby high school. Her letter alleges the now judge held her down and covered her mouth with his hand. They were in a room with a classmate of Mr Kavanaugh's, and both boys had been drinking, before turning up the music to muffle her sound of protests, she alleges. The woman was able to free herself, the New Yorker said. Although the alleged incident was decades ago, the woman said the memory had caused ongoing distress and she had sought psychological treatment. (Webmaster's comment: Republicans don't care about this. Sexual assault is a job perk to them!)

9-14-18 Media: Did CBS act too slowly on Moonves charges?
CBS boss Les Moonves had won so many battles, he thought he could even survive #MeToo, said John Koblin in The New York Times. Having taken CBS from last place in the ratings to the top with shows such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and, yes, Survivor, Moonves made himself into “perhaps the most powerful television executive of the last two decades.” When the first detailed allegations of sexual harassment against him were raised last month by New Yorker reporter Ronan Farrow, Moonves was convinced he would avoid the fate of #MeToo villains Harvey Weinstein, Matt Lauer, and Charlie Rose. He stepped right back into the public eye, dining with his wife, the CBS host Julie Chen, at Nobu Malibu, a hot spot for Hollywood executives. But last week, six more women accused Moonves of sexual assaults, “physical violence, and intimidation,” said Ronan Farrow in The New Yorker. The women said that when they tried to escape Moonves, he retaliated, growing “cold as ice, hostile, nasty,” and sabotaging their careers.

9-14-18 Gerard Depardieu
Gerard Depardieu was spotted this week at a military parade in Pyongyang, just weeks after the acclaimed French actor was accused of raping a 22-year-old actress. Depardieu, 69, wore sunglasses and a hat to the event, which honored the 70th anniversary of North Korea’s founding. It had been revealed only a few days earlier that French prosecutors are investigating allegations that Depardieu twice sexually assaulted the actress at his Paris mansion. Depardieu, who denies the charges, is close with the actress’ father and had “taken her under his wing,” a source told The Daily Telegraph (U.K.).

9-13-18 Betsy DeVos is absolutely right about campus sexual assault rules
To push an issue, a leader usually needs to have integrity or street cred. Abraham Lincoln had the first when he led the country out of slavery. Richard Nixon, a security hawk, had the second when he made peace with China. President Donald Trump admittedly has neither when it comes to women's issues. So his administration is hardly in any moral position to revamp the rules governing sexual assault on college campuses that President Barack Obama, a paragon of propriety, put in place. Yet Obama's rules were so overzealous and draconian that civil libertarians who care about the rights of the accused should welcome Education Secretary Betsy DeVos' proposed reforms. In 2011, the Obama administration sent a "Dear Colleague" letter to colleges that receive federal funds — which is literally all of them but one — laying out the blueprint they needed to follow in sexual assault cases to avoid running afoul of federal Title IX rules that bar sexual discrimination in higher education. Although the administration didn't say it in so many words, the clear implication was that if colleges failed to comply, they would lose their federal dollars. The impetus behind the guidance was the (indisputably correct) notion that scandal-averse campus authorities have a powerful incentive to disbelieve victims and brush assault claims under the rug. Michigan State University's handling of Larry Nassar, the physician who molested female athletes for decades before his victims were finally heard, is ample proof of that. Still, the Obama rules swung the pendulum too much in the opposite direction, wrecking basic notions of justice, equity, and fairness. It basically set up sexually inexperienced students to be treated like Nassar-style predators — especially minority men.

9-11-18 Serena Williams and the trope of the 'angry black woman'
Mammies, jezebels, Sapphires. Black women in America have long been dogged by negative stereotypes, rooted in a history of racism and slavery. In the aftermath of Serena Williams' controversial US Open loss, it's the trope of the "angry black woman" that has once again re-emerged. "As it was unfolding I could tell this was not going to turn out well," says law professor Trina Jones. "I knew it was going to be a trainwreck." In addition to being a long-time tennis fan, Prof Jones has studied racial stereotyping and how it plays into the lives of African-American women. "Black women are not supposed to push back and when they do, they're deemed to be domineering. Aggressive. Threatening. Loud." Similar words have been levelled at Serena Williams more than once, as well as former First Lady Michelle Obama and top Democrat Maxine Waters in recent years. Williams has been docked before for her behaviour on the court - in 2009, she was fined $82,500 for an angry outburst - though she is far from the only player to face punishment for similar conduct. Prof Jones says some have compared the referee's calls to speeding tickets: many people speed and sometimes a few are caught. But that analogy, she says, misses the point that African Americans are disproportionately pulled aside. In the case of Williams, she was first dinged on a coaching violation that happens often but is rarely called out as the player's fault. "Why would a black woman in a championship match therefore be called on it?" Prof Jones says, adding that an attack on one's integrity is only natural to be angry about. "[Williams] is outraged because she knows the context." (Webmaster's comment: Black women are not allowed to challenge the supremacy of the white male! After all white males raped them for years with impunity! And often still do!)

9-10-18 Les Moonves resigns from CBS after sexual misconduct allegations
The head of US media giant CBS, Les Moonves, has resigned with immediate effect following allegations of sexual misconduct. CBS had been investigating Mr Moonves since allegations appeared in the New Yorker in July - and fresh accusations from six more women appeared on Sunday. Mr Moonves, 68, denies the allegations, calling the latest "appalling". In a statement CBS said a $20m (£15.4m) would be paid immediately in support of the #MeToo movement. It said one or more organisations that supported #MeToo and female workplace equality stood to benefit, but did not specify which. The donation has been deducted from any severance benefits that may be due to Mr Moonves - the amount of which is pending the results of an ongoing independent investigation into his conduct. Under his leadership, CBS has been the most-watched network in the US. He developed hits like CSI and The Big Bang Theory, while his $69.3m (£53m) earnings in 2017 made him one of the highest paid chief executives in the world. Mr Moonves' tenure at the top of CBS, which he joined in 1995, has been marked by a power struggle with Shari Redstone who, through her family's business National Amusements, is the controlling shareholder in both CBS and the media conglomerate, Viacom. Ms Redstone and Mr Moonves had been engaged in a court battle as he tried to thwart her plan to merge CBS and Viacom. But the announcement of Mr Moonves' departure came at the same time as CBS said it was ending legal action against National Amusements. For its part, National Amusements said it would not seek a merger between the two companies for the next two years. (Webmaster's comment: I'm a man and I like women. I'd like to like men too but so many of them make it so damn difficult!)

9-10-18 Miss America 2019: Miss Michigan criticises Flint water crisis
A contestant in Sunday's Miss America competition has been commended on social media for using her brief introduction to draw attention to the Flint water crisis. Instead of speaking about herself, Miss Michigan said she was "from the state with 84% of the US fresh water but none for its residents to drink". A deadly water crisis, due to lead piping, has plagued Flint since 2014. Local residents are still advised to only drink filtered and bottled water. It is thought that nearly 100,000 residents of the poor, mostly black city were exposed to high levels of lead. The contamination has been blamed for at least 12 deaths. While water tests are improving, full replacement of the pipes is not expected to be completed until 2020. On Twitter, people applauded Emily Sioma's comments, calling her a "badass woman" and saying she should have won for speaking out. As a survivor of sexual assault, Ms Sioma has already used her public platform to bring attention to violence against women. (Webmaster's comment: The assault of women by men is never ending, but they are the only ones who have the courage to speak out against the evil decisions by MANY men in our society. Where are the GOOD MEN?)

9-8-18 Women in Myanmar are using Facebook to find their voice
In a country where violence against women is an epidemic, technology helps them band together and fight for their rights. Facebook is Myanmar's main digital communication platform. In recent months, U.N. investigators, U.S. senators, and Myanmar civil society leaders have blamed Facebook for fueling ethnic tension and violence against Myanmar's Muslim minority, including the Rohingya. But many women in Myanmar are also using the platform to organize and amplify their voices as they call on Parliament to issue harsher punishments for rapists. That includes women like 21-year-old Thet Thet Wai. At a small gym in downtown Yangon on a summer day, Thet Wai bench presses nearly double her body weight. Thet Wai is tiny, but she's strong. She wears a sports bra, spandex tights, and bright red lipstick. "I'm going against what Myanmar culture tells me is the way a woman is supposed to be," Thet Wai said. A Myanmar woman, she says, is supposed to stay inside, keep her opinions to herself, and wear modest clothes. But when Thet Wai is lifting weights, she feels strong. "At home, I feel very oppressed as a woman, and sometimes I start to internalize and think that I'm weak. So, when I'm lifting weights, it's one of the only times I feel strong," said Thet Wai. A few months after she joined the gym, Thet Wai quit her public relations job to train full time for Myanmar's female bodybuilding competition. She walked away from that competition in third place, with a glass trophy. Afterward, she started getting a lot of attention from other Myanmar women on the internet. In a matter of weeks, Thet Wai got some 20,000 new followers on Facebook, where she started uploading videos of herself lifting, squatting, and showing off her abs. (Thet Wai's personal page has since been deactivated.) She wasn't just interested in her own posts, though. She started paying more attention to things others were posting. And what she saw was shocking: picture after picture of maimed and bloody women who were victims of assault. A recent Myanmar government report says the number of rape cases in Myanmar increased by nearly 30 percent from 2016-2017. Hnin Yee Aye, a spokesperson for a group called the Women's Protection Organization blames a "lack of law enforcement, freeing rapists from prison after a short time, and occasional government amnesties for rapists," she said in a Myanmar Times story. One day in February, Thet Wai checked her news feed to see countless posts about a young girl who was raped, beaten, and found dead in a banana plantation outside Mandalay. This case became part of a national conversation about harsher punishments for rapists. "From what I've seen, the majority of these people are repeat offenders, and they'll do it again. The reason I want to have the [death] penalty is not just to punish the person who's doing this crime, but to make sure other men who might do this are too scared to do it," she said. Thet Wai was horrified by the story. She signed a petition circulating on Facebook calling on Parliament to issue the death sentence for rapists.

9-7-18 Louis C.K.: Too soon for a return?
“Louis C.K. could not have chosen a worse possible way to stage a comeback,” said Dana Schwartz in The superstar comic had been in seclusion since admitting to multiple incidents of masturbating in front of horrified female comedians in dressing rooms and other private settings. Just nine months after his misconduct came to light as a result of the #MeToo movement, C.K. re-emerged for a surprise set at a New York comedy club before a “possibly unwilling audience.” By forcing people “to watch him perform,” C.K. only proved he’s “completely oblivious” to what he did wrong in the first place. C.K.’s victims endured more than just humiliation, said Rebecca Traister in His handlers threatened to destroy their livelihoods “when they dared to reveal what he had done.” They’re hardly alone. Many women’s careers were ruined because of the aggressive predations of Matt Lauer and Charlie Rose, who were shielded for years by circles of enablers. Now all these creeps are planning comebacks. Do any of them “have such unique talents that we cannot live without them”?

9-6-18 Dancer sues New York City Ballet over nude photos
A 19-year-old ballerina is suing the New York City Ballet (NYCB) and a former principal dancer for sexually exploiting female dancers. Alexandra Waterbury alleges that Chase Finlay, who resigned last month, shared explicit photos and videos of her with other dancers, without her consent. She claims the "fraternity culture" allowed male dancers to exploit women. NYCB has denied the allegations. A lawyer for Mr Finlay said the complaint consisted of allegations, not facts. Ms Waterbury, who dated Mr Finlay for a year, says he took photos and videos of her without her knowledge while they were in a relationship, according to the lawsuit, filed Wednesday in Manhattan. According to the lawsuit, Mr Finlay shared this content with two other dancers and personnel at NYC Ballet - in text threads allegedly full of misogynistic language. Ms Waterbury's lawsuit claims that though the photos were not taken at NYCB, the company's culture "emboldens [male dancers] to disregard the law and violate the basic rights of women". She alleges these men "could do whatever they wanted to women, whenever they wanted to do so" as long as it happened in New York City, "where it could be controlled by executives and management". The lawsuit claims that two principals from the ballet, Amar Ramasar and Zachary Catazaro, were sent and received photos from Chase Finlay and were suspended from the ballet. Mr Finlay's lawyer told PIX 11 News that Ms Waterbury's "complaint is nothing more than a mass of allegations that ought not to be taken as fact". In a statement, NYCB said it "vehemently denies the allegations that the Company has condoned, encouraged, or fostered the kind of activity that Mr Finlay and the others named have participated in".

9-3-18 LGBT rights: Malaysia women caned for attempting to have lesbian sex
Two Malaysian women convicted of attempting to have lesbian sex in a car have been caned in a religious court. The Muslim women, aged 22 and 32, were each caned six times in the Sharia High Court in the state of Terengganu. According to an official, this is the state's first conviction for same-sex relations and its first public caning. Human rights activists reacted with outrage. Homosexual activity is illegal under both secular and religious laws. The caning was witnessed by more than 100 people, according to local news outlet The Star. Malaysian rights group Women's Aid Organisation told Reuters news agency it was "appalled by this grave violation of human rights". A member of the Terengganu state executive council, Satiful Bahri Mamat, defended the punishment, telling the agency it had not been intended to "torture or injure" and had been carried out in public to "serve as a lesson to society".

9-1-18 Aretha Franklin bishop sorry after 'groping' Ariana Grande
The bishop who led Aretha Franklin's funeral has apologised to Ariana Grande after being accused of groping her on stage. Images show Bishop Charles H Ellis III holding Ariana high above her waist, with his fingers squeezed around the side of the singer's chest. "It would never be my intention to touch any woman's breast," he told the Associated Press. "Maybe I crossed the border, maybe I was too friendly or familiar." He added: "But again, I apologise." The preacher said he hugged all artists, male or female, during the ceremony commemorating the Queen of Soul. But viewers began posting images from the service when Ariana got up to sing Aretha's song (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman. Many people felt that Bishop Ellis's hand was inappropriately high on the 25-year-old's body as he spoke to her - saying that she looked uncomfortable with the contact. It came as others on social media had been criticising Ariana for what she was wearing to the church service, saying her dress was too short. Some people said that the focus being on Ariana, rather than the bishop, was misogynistic. And argued that the pastor's embrace deserved greater attention than it was getting. (Webmaster's comment: "Copping a feel" is sexual assault! He should arrested, charged, tried and in prison! Let's stop treating "Copping a feel" as something men can simply be "sorry" for! Call them out and nail them to the wall!)

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25 Abuse of Women News Articles
for September 2018

Abuse of Women News Articles for August 2018