So yesterday I wrote about some acts and people that I considered to be ripples of hope.
These included the naming of Ugandan gay activist Kasha Jacqueline Nabagesera to receive the prestigious Martin Ennals award and the decision by a judge in Bangladesh to sentence 11 people to life in prison for the gang rape of a young woman.
This was the good news.
Unfortunately, today I’ve learned about some bad news about sports and sexual assault.
Bernard Lefkowitz wrote about this often toxic combination in Our Guys, a searing book about the rape in Glen Ridge, New Jersey-the home town of Tom Mapother, later more popularly known as Tom Cruise-of a mentally retarded young woman.
Yesterday I heard from friend and activist Cecilia Quinn, who sent the following article about a former cheerleader in Texas who was dismissed from the squad for refusing to cheer for Rakheem Bolton, the star basketball player she said had raped her.
According to the article:
Texas high school cheerleader who was kicked off the squad for refusing to chant the name of a basketball player – the same athlete she said had raped her four months earlier – lost a U.S. Supreme Court appeal Monday.
A federal appeals court ruled in September that the cheerleader was speaking for the school, not herself, and had no right to remain silent when called on to cheer the athlete by name.
The Supreme Court denied review of the case Monday without comment.
The article goes on to say that the girl was acting as a mouthpiece for the school. The court said the woman’s family had to pay the district $45,000 in legal fees for the costs it incurred in the original lawsuit.
The decision has already generated some fierce commentary on Cecilia’s Facebook page:
Nancy Rivera A “mouthpiece”?!!!! Seriously? That was what an appeals court ruled? That was their defense!?!? This is disgusting. I am with you on this! Did she sign something saying she was a “mouthpiece” for some insignificant high school footbal…See More
Cecelia Quinn I feel like suing the “school”-but seriously no learning institution would allow for such blatant misogyny & torture of a survivor of sexual violence…
Maureen Glynn Quaid Un be liev a ble
Regina Edmonds that the player was not really punished is sadly the outcome most of the time – sports rule in the USA and other places as well and why should the rape of some “snotty girl” upset the money making process of sports and the rights of male athletes to do pretty much whatever they want – it is so upsetting!!!!
Maureen Glynn Quaid Exactly why we need to have more women in power. Sadly, we live in a meathead dominated world.
Jeffrey keep your head up Man of God your church family loves u! Your Evanston Community is praying for the blood of Jesus ove this situation, we got your back T.I.G.H.T. youth ministry loves you!