Although we may intellectually understand that it’s inappropriate to make fun of people with mental illnesses, we still have this continued knee-jerk reaction to mock Britney Spears for hers. It’s as if the public’s perception of Spears is frozen in time, where we’re unable to see past her breakdown to fully recognize her as a human being.
Captain Marvel is a powerfully moving story about a survivor, a heroine who embraces her newfound identity. Although her humanity is exploited by power-hungry warmongers, what’s groundbreaking about this film is that Carol Danvers refuses to see her victimization as a weakness, and instead uses this opportunity to break the cycle of violence and war.
Ariana Grande’s reaction to being called out for cultural appropriation was immature and disappointing. Instead of listening to criticism with empathy, Grande reacts from her sensitive ego, reminding us that she is, at the end of the day, a wealthy white woman with a ton of privilege and a deep spray tan.
The momentum of #MeToo shows the media’s power to help shift society’s views on sexual violence. Yet, in a society steeped in patriarchal values, the media often perpetuates rape culture. If we have any hope of creating a safe world for marginalized communities that’s free of sexual violence, the media must change the way it responds to survivors/victims.
Filipino culture heavily stigmatizes mental health — it is either ignored entirely, or minimized and mocked. Luckily for my parents and for my own mental health, I adopted 2 kittens and changed all of our lives.
Between #MeToo and the onslaught of survivors of sexual violence coming forward about being abused by powerful men, social media has been a nightmare for survivors.
Another week, another shitty, entitled white dude in the music industry enjoying success after violating a Black woman. If there’s anything that Amerikkka loves more than a bunch of men fighting over a ball made from animal skin, it’s caping for mediocre white men and shaming women and femmes for their sexuality.
I fell in love with my best friend last year - the first person I'd been vulnerable with since being raped in 2015. He made me relive the exact circumstances of my rape, and then had the nerve to threaten to kill himself when I asked for space. I stayed with him for a year.
Trump’s plan to erase the Obama administration’s policies will support a system that will continue to inflict trauma and perpetuate the informal legalization of rape.
As a Filipina woman and survivor of sexual violence, I was hesitant to engage with Taylor Swift’s countersuit alleging sexual assault, especially given her status as Queen Becky of the White Feminists. From her “girlsquad” of thin, able-bodied, cishetero women, to accusing Nicki Minaj of tearing women (read: Swift) down while Minaj called out racism, Swift only ever cries feminism when it benefits her.
When my friend Amber Discko announced her latest project Aloe, I was so excited to see it grow. As the founder of the Femsplain community, Amber has my full confidence and support. Femsplain came to me when I was at my lowest, it was like a lantern that I found while trying to navigate the darkness of trauma, and it helped me find my path to healing. I expect that many people will find Aloe has the same effect. I talked to Amber about her latest project.
Despite being a diehard stan, I was skeptical about Lana Del Rey's new album at first. Del Rey has often been gratuitous with her creativity at the expense of marginalized groups. One of her most iconic images as an artist is her appropriating an Indigenous headdress in the “Ride” video, and her portrayed herself as a Latina sex worker in “Tropico”. The hallmark of her music, along with a leaked clip filmed by Eli Roth where Del Rey stars in a horrifying visceral rape scene, is how she glamorizes and romanticizes domestic violence. Moreover, she’s made comments about how feminism just isn’t that interesting to her, and that she’d rather discuss our galactic possibilities.
Kesha's latest single shows that survivors who speak their truth come from a place of empathy and compassion. We act out of love for ourselves, and love for humanity. After all, if we don't tell our stories, how would we be able to affect the change society so desperately needs?
The Internet unearthed Whedon's 2006 take on "Wonder Woman" and phew, am I glad it never saw the light of day. The script reeks of the typical male gaze that is already rampant in mainstream media, and is just plain tacky.
Sexual intercourse with a condom is different from sex without, and there are different risks inherent in both of them. Removing the condom changes the context in which you consented to sexual intercourse. If that context changes, it is imperative that consent is reaffirmed.
I could never change the fact that I had been assaulted, or that my heart had been broken. But instead of letting those negative experiences change me for the worse, I pushed myself to channel that energy into creating positive change and into pouring love into my life.
An administrative tribunal in Ontario ruled that they believed my story, and in one of the most gratifying moments of my life, found me to have been a victim of a sexual assault perpetrated by the "alleged offender." It took about two months to receive the written decision and cheque in the mail.
Watching a woman who looks like me kick major ass helps me accept both my Asian heritage and identity as a survivor of sexual violence.
Survivors are expected to conform to an impossible standard of victimhood, and are faced with an impossible choice — speak up now and be deemed a liar, stay silent and/or speak up later and it never happened.
In the past four years, I’ve listened to Lana Del Rey over 21,000 times, and that’s just according to my Last.fm records. I’ve bought multiple copies of each of her albums, and I own way too many of her magazine covers. I really don’t mean to come off as a crazy stan because she has a lot of those, but her music helps me in a way that I feel it necessary to support her.
"Through engaging with experts in care provision, alongside those working to provide community supports and empowerment initiatives, the UTSU facilitated a stimulating conversation that addressed various facets of care, support, and experiences of and for survivors. This analysis included understanding what systems exist, what promises have been made, the lived realities of survivors, and determining what action can be taken to address systemic flaws to ensure accessibility for all."
After tweeting about almost being published in Teen Vogue on June 2, Toronto-based freelance writer, Roslyn Talusan’s call-out of the magazine went viral. Dozens of writers flooded her inbox with similar stories of being strung along and even ghosted by editors after successfully pitching and drafting personal stories and essays for Conde Nast’s supposedly most progressive, feminist magazine.
CityNews reported that the withdrawal rate of sexual assault charges are much higher in Toronto than anywhere else in Ontario. Roslyn spoke with Cynthia Mulligan about why this resonated with her.
After a protest led by Mandi Gray, Roslyn appeared on CBC The National to talk about the cost of sexual assault.