Cheerleader Ordered To Cheer Her Rapist, and Other Stories
Posted by BroadBlogs
In 2008 a high school cheerleader joined her friends for a post-football game party. But the fun turned into a nightmare when, she says, four young men sexually assaulted her. A grand jury initially declined to indict, but Rakheem Bolton was eventually charged and pled guilty to simple assault.
Bolton was also on the basketball team. But the 16-year-old refused to root for him. So school officials ordered her to cheer Bolton on, or go home. When she refused, she was cut from the squad.
After suing the district attorney, the school district and the principal, an appeals court ruled against her.
The school had no problem with her attacker playing on the team. Too important to win! Cheerleaders, however, won’t gain the school any glory.
The courts often see the world through the eyes of the powerful, too.
Who gets punished? Well, who’s powerful?
Case 2: Child Abuse Called “Art”
“Hypothetical question: How would you feel if, as a young teenager, your father asked you to strip down naked so he could film you talking about your confusing, puberty-warped body? Oh, you wouldn’t like it? Really? What if he called it ‘art’?” Asks NYU LOCAL reporter, Keyana Stevens.
New York University purchased the archives of artist, Larry Rivers. But one of his daughters wants to destroy the film entitled “Growing,” telling the New York Times that her father’s coercion in making those films led her to develop anorexia. “It wrecked a lot of my life, actually.”
But she had no control. And initially NYU refused her request.
Only public outrage turned things around, leading NYU to reject that part of the collection.
Case 3: DA Sends Abusive Texts to Abuse Victim
In the midst of prosecuting a man accused of domestic violence, District Attorney, Kenneth Kratz began texting the “hot, young” (as he put it) victim hoping to start a sexual relationship.
Experts called the messages disturbing and unethical, given the power differential between the prosecutor and the young victim. Not to mention heaping abuse on top of abuse.
At first Kratz seemed likely to avoid punishment. State legal regulators said his actions were not technically misconduct. The state crime victims’ rights board, which Kratz had chaired, wasn’t investigating. And Gov. Jim Doyle stayed silent.
Once again, publicity and shame came to the rescue: Kratz chose to resign.
When it comes to punishment, too often the powerful don’t have to worry as the powerless suffer. Except those rare cases when shock and publicity intervene.
What a sad state of affairs.
Source: “DA keeps jobs despite texting “hot, young nymph” violence victim.” San Jose Mercury News. September 17, 2010
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About BroadBlogsI have a Ph.D. from UCLA in sociology (emphasis: gender, social psych). I currently teach sociology and women's studies at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, CA. I have also lectured at San Jose State. And I have blogged for Feminispire, Ms. Magazine, The Good Men Project and Daily Kos. Also been picked up by The Alternet.
Posted on October 11, 2010, in feminism, gender, men, sex, sexism, violence against women, women and tagged cheerleader cheer rapist, culture, feminism, gender, growing, human rights, Kenneth Kratz, Larry Rivers archives, men, NYU, rape and sexual assault, sex, sexism, sexual assault, text message, violence against women, women. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.