sexual assault

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman resigned just hours after the New Yorker published a piece containing allegations of physical and sexual abuse. It's a #MeToo case that further shakes the public trust in elected leaders. After all, Schneiderman has consistently praised women for coming forward, and vowed to be an ally in the movement.

Our guests discuss it:

The Black Cinema Series at The Little Theatre continues this month with the documentary, The Rape of Recy Taylor. Oprah recently mentioned Taylor’s name during her acceptance speech at the Golden Globes, saying Taylor never got justice after she was raped by six white men. Taylor’s case – and others like hers – helped spark the civil rights movement.

We discuss Taylor’s legacy, race relations in 2018, and issues surrounding sexual assault. In studio:

  • Kevin Hicks, journalist and vice president for print for the RABJ
  • Allison O'Malley, chief executive officer of RESOLVE
  • Moiet James, development administrative assistant for WXXI, co-coordinator for the Black Cinema Series, and member of the RABJ
  • Ericka Wilson, producer for WHEC-TV, co-coordinator for the Black Cinema Series, and member of the RABJ

Why are women occasionally abused on movie sets, ostensibly for the sake of genuine art? The question was raised this past weekend, when Uma Thurman told the New York Times about abuses she has suffered. She says director Quentin Tarantino spit in her face and choked her with a chain on the set of Kill Bill.

Maria Schneider famously felt "a little raped" during filming for Last Tango in Paris when she was not warned about a scene in which her character was assaulted. Director Bernardo Bertolucci later said he "wanted her reaction as a girl, not as an actress."

But men rarely suffer such abuses. We discuss the double standard, and we discuss what lines should never be crossed for the sake of art. Our guests:

Actor and comedian Aziz Ansari is dealing with allegations of sexual misconduct. Those allegations have set off a debate about consent and communication during sexual interaction. Many women have said that the Ansari story offers an instructive parallel to their own experiences with men.

Our panel debates the lessons. Our guests:

  • Nicole Trabold, Ph.D., LMSW, National Research Service Award Fellow at the University of Rochester School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry
  • Allison O’Malley, chief executive officer of RESOLVE
  • Jenna Weintraub, sexuality educator
  • Lauren Berger, education and outreach specialist at RESTORE

As more women across the country feel empowered to share their experiences of being sexual harassed or sexually assaulted -- often in the workplace -- some people are asking the question, "What could detail the #MeToo movement?" A piece in the Daily Beast addresses that and offers a warning. We discuss it with our guests:

  • Vanessa Cheeks, reporter for Open Mic Roc
  • Erin-Kate Howard, co-founder of Lady Parts Theatre Company
  • Kelsey Claire Hagen, comedian

Harvey Weinstein's fall has reignited conversations about abuse of power, and how men in power tend to be protected in various ways.

We discuss a range of related issues: how employment agreements can impact victims; what recourse victims have; how to change the culture of protection for predators. Our guests:

Part of a presentation about sexual assault awareness at a local college has led to heated discussions about how the subject is taught. The presentation, which took place during a freshman orientation at RIT, included the Disney character, Roo, and the caption, "self-gratification can prevent sexual assault.” Critics say the graphic sends the wrong message. We’ll hear from a number of local colleges about how they educate students about the dangers of sexual assault. Our guests:

On May 1, the Department of Defense released new information about a troubling subject: cases of sexual assault in the military. The data shows that 14,900 service members reported being sexually assaulted in 2016. That’s down from 20,300 reported cases in 2014. Despite the reduction in those numbers, the DoD isn’t confusing progress with success. The vast majority of cases go un-reported, with many victims choosing silence out of fear of retaliation. They struggle with PTSD, and sometimes, cannot find access to counseling services.

All of these issues are at the heart of a compelling new play now on stage at Geva Theatre Center. It’s called Other than Honorable, and it tells the story of Grace Rattigan. Now a private attorney, Grace served in the military in her 20s and was a victim of sexual assault. Even though she left active duty, her experiences continue to haunt her – she suffers from PTSD, nightmares, and the added stress of her husband being deployed to Afghanistan. But her life takes on new meaning when she accepts a military sexual assault case.

The play was 10 years in the making, but, of course, remains relevant today. We discuss Other than Honorable, and how to help victims of sexual assault.

  • Jamie Pachino, playwright
  • Jessiee Datino, actor who plays Grace Rattigan in Other than Honorable
  • Kinga Kondor-Hine, licensed mental health counselor at the Veterans Outreach Center
  • Pat Bishop, art therapist at the Veterans Outreach Center

File photo

Local supporters are reacting to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s decision to step forward and assist child sex abuse victims.

Cuomo unveiled his 2017 policy initiatives in a book, which included a plan for the Child Victims Act. The proposal would do away with the statute of limitation on prosecutions of those who abused children.  Further, it would allow victims to bring civil lawsuits for 50 years from when their attacks took place.

Surrogates of Donald Trump have broadened their explanations for why Trump's boasts of sexual assault are not a big deal. Ben Carson lectured a CNN anchor that maybe SHE is the problem, because she hasn't heard men talk like that. And former New York State Lieutenant Governor Betsy McAughey said that rap music has worse lyrics, so can't we focus on that?

Our panel discusses the impact of a presidential candidate who assesses women almost entirely on looks, and seems to assume that his power gives him the right to treat them as he pleases. In studio: