What’s Current: 16 women tell their stories of sexual harassment and assault by Trump

What’s Current is Feminist Current’s Daily news roundup.

Image: bravenewfilms.org
  • A new short film features the stories of 16 women who have reported that Donald Trump sexually harassed or assaulted them. The filmmakers say:

“In the post–Harvey Weinstein (or Roy Moore, Louis C.K., etc.) world we live in, we cannot ignore 16 women who over the course of decades in a broad range of situations encountered the same pattern of manipulation, misogyny, harassment and abuse. ”

  • Canada’s MMIWG Inquiry has recently fired three staff members. Two of them — Morene Gabriel and Melissa Carlick — both community liaison workers, are speaking up about their abrupt terminations and criticizing the way the Inquiry is being managed.
  • In the UK, two men are on trial accused of manslaughter by gross negligence for the death of Megan Bannister, 16. The jury heard that Jason Burder, and Adam King, both 28, drove around for hours making “calls to escorts — working girls — and websites” while Bannister died in the backseat of the car.
  • According to a new study, feminist theory can help treat anorexia.

“Researchers at the University of East Anglia trialled a 10-week program with seven inpatients at a centre in Norwich. They used Disney films, social media, news articles, and adverts to talk about the social expectations and constructs of gender, how we view women’s bodies and how we define femininity. They spoke about the way we portray appetite, hunger, and anger, as well as the ways we objectify women’s bodies.”

  • Autopsies on the bodies of the 26 Nigerian teenage girls recovered from the Mediterranean Sea earlier this month have confirmed that they drowned.
Lisa Steacy
Lisa Steacy

Lisa Steacy is an Assistant Editor at Feminist Current. She has a B.A. in Women & Gender Studies from the University of Toronto. However, the women she met in her five years as a frontline worker and collective member with Vancouver Rape Relief & Women’s Shelter deserve almost all of the credit for her feminist education. She lives in Vancouver with her partner and their cats.

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  • Cassandra

    Bill Clinton was a predator. It has never been “debunked.”

    • Alienigena

      Yeah, I don’t understand why people constantly make excuses for Clinton. When a group of ‘feminists’ defended him when the story broke and derided the female accusers I was really disgusted. I am Canadian and really didn’t know who the majority of these women were at the time.

      https://www.vanityfair.com/magazine/1998/05/williams199805

      At the very least Bill Clinton abused his power by giving a political appointment to a former lover and he exploited young women (Monica Lewinsky) the way Weinstein did. Who knows what promises Clinton made to Lewinsky? Susan Faludi suggested Lewinsky put the moves on Clinton. Who would suggest that a prominent woman saying such a thing about Weinstein’s victims should just getting away with making such statements. Why is it acceptable to deny that women you may not like were abused by powerful men or just abused by a man (their husband, boyfriend, father, brother, uncle, etc.)?

      This is what makes me feel that women en masse are just handmaidens. I mean, if you don’t mindlessly grin at men you are somehow being abusive towards them. This is the feedback I have gotten from other women. If your life’s work is to make the world easier for men, including men who abuse, just state that as your truth, so we are clear.

      • Cassandra

        Well, there are reasons so-called feminists did what they did back then. Clinton was supposedly a defender of women’s rights, so women will often defend lib bros if they say they agree that a woman has the right to control her own body.

        Forgive me if I get this muddled, but I think there’s a failed attempt with lib fems in regard to “agency” (in order to “answer to” patriarchy) in that if we say we should have the “agency” to control our reproductive lives, then why can’t/doesn’t that apply to our sexual encounter decision making? If we can make the decision about abortion and have the judgment for that, then why can’t we be held accountable, for lack of a better word, when it comes to falling prey to predatory males? It’s a tough one to explain to people because they think we’re being hypocrites, or something like that. So lib fems jumped on this bandwagon because men (especially conservative men) like to trot out this seemingly contradictory position — that men should be held 100% accountable for being fuckface predators, AND/BUT we have the right to control the contents of our uteri on demand.

        We as radfems understand that both are true at the same time, but many, many people can’t.

        The 90s was also the beginning of third wave feminism and so many women got caught up in it, politically speaking. As far as I’m concerned the women who defended Clinton back them have a special spot in hell waiting for them.

        As far as Susan Faludi saying that Lewinsky put the moves on Clinton (or anybody who says this), my answer is SO WHAT IF SHE DID? She was a KID. Young girls test out their powers of seduction because this fucking stupid culture tells them it’s POWER, which is how young girls are groomed to be victims. He was almost 50 and had tremendous REAL power. It was HIS responsibility to nip it in the fucking bud, to understand Lewinksy’s lack of life experience in comparison to his own. But then here we go again, around and around — if she doesn’t have the judgment to know that fucking around with the president is ill-advised, then how can she have the judgment for anything else?!

        My answer to that in regard to abortion (and I’m not the first one to say it) is always, “So instead of having an abortion she should have a kid? Motherhood is all about having good judgment, riiiiight?”

        This whole choosey choice/consent agency bullshit comes straight out of the abortion issue. It’s a fantastic way for male predators to go to fucking town, which is exactly what has happened.

        • Kiwipally

          I agree. It is not possible to consent to abuse. Ever.

  • fragglerock

    It’s my belief that feminism can heal many things–PTSD, depression, anxiety…etc
    Radical feminism helped me leave an abusive relationship and is still helping me heal.

    • Kiwipally

      I’m sorry you were in an abusive relationship and I am pleased you were able to leave.

    • Robert Gonzalez

      It helped to heal me. And though I often still feel crazy these days, I do know it would have been worse if I had not seen another voice out there that agreed with me like radical feminism does.

  • calabasa

    Where is your evidence for this? What an insult to Juanita Broaddrick and all of Bill Clinton’s other victims.

  • Hekate Jayne

    Did you see the picture of Franken holding his hands up over the woman’s breasts? While she was sleeping?

    Photographic evidence.

    I can’t understand what you are talking about with always defending Clinton. You seem to think that he is some kind of champion of women, or something.

    So only right wing males are pervs and sexists? And left wing males are wonderful?

  • Hekate Jayne

    Mancheeze has a video up on YouTube about the whole al Franken thing. It is only about 20 minutes, and really worth a look.

    That is a FABULOUS article that you linked. I hope that everyone takes a few minutes to read it.

    You know, there is no patriarchal politician that cares about women. At most, we are a bargaining chip. At worst, we are bleeding incubators that males legally control.

    I don’t know how anyone can ever defend bill Clinton for any reason. He GUTTED welfare, which hurt millions of women and children, especially WOC. That is just one policy that he created that horribly harmed women. In addition to being a predator.

    Whenever Clinton comes up, my mind goes to Lillie Harden first, and his rapey behavior second. He used her (and her kids), and he created and enacted the policies that ultimately resulted in her death. And then he ignored her when she begged for help.

    But that is patriarchy. Great for white dudes. Bad for the women. Too often, it is deadly.

    • OldPolarBear

      Thanks for mentioning the Mancheeze video, found it and watched it and she nails it. I read her and watch her videos and then forget to look for a while. I watched three or four more of her videos as they came up on autoplay, just didn’t want to stop. Totally OT, but I love her account of how she lets the mice that get in her house alone and they come out and get sort of tame and hang out with her. I don’t go quite that far with mice, but reading that a while back is part of what got me switched over to a Havahart live-catch trap for them, followed by outdoor release.

  • calabasa

    Yup, I had to unfriend a female edm DJ I know who is always talking about how hard her industry is as a woman (never talking to her again, online or otherwise) who said that Louis CK’s accusers were “social climbing sluts who went to his hotel room and were prolly doing coke anyway.” Jesus fucking Christ.

  • Cassandra

    That piece by Caitlin Johnstone is FUCKING FANTASTIC.

  • Cassandra

    I’m a huge Mancheeze (House Mouse Queen) fan as well. I used to comment on her blog but she doesn’t write much anymore… she’s focused on YouTube, which seems smart for her.