Sunday, April 02, 2006

Duke, the Durham community and the Nation....

The entire nation has taken notice of the horrific sexual assault incident involving the Duke lacrosse team that recently took place on campus. Many months ago we were booked to speak at Duke to kick off the Duke Women's Center sexual assault and violence prevention week. Our arrival and presentation just happened to be more timely than one could ever expect. Instead of this important week being a time of prevention and awareness, it was a time of tragedy and outrage, but also a time of campus unity and overwhelming support. Being on campus amongst multiple media vans, reporters, camera crew tents,campus safety folks--multiplied, students, faculty, staff and members of the Raleigh- Durham community was a bit surreal. In the midst of one of the most beautiful campuses we have ever visited was an overwhelming presence of controlled chaos. There was an abundant outcry of support from the Duke community. Members of the community who wanted to be heard...who wanted to "talk about it!" Now that we have the nations attention, it's time to take action. We respect and admire this courageous woman for coming forward. We are heart-broken over the community and what they're going through, what we're all going through. We can't go backwards and change what has happened. We need to move forward, take action and be a part of the solution. It's time to talk about "it". To face the issues of sexual assault on campus and in the community. This particular incident happened at Duke, but it could have been anywhere.

Please feel free to check the article that appeared on the cover of The Herald Sun the day following our program at Duke University:

PS- The Duke Women's Center ROCKS THE say the very least. Mad props to the staff, student volunteers and all of their hard work not only this week but throughout the year.

1 comment:

JanetF said...

Dear Ms. Addington and Ms. Tieder:

Now that the Durham alleged "rape" hoax has been exposed I can't help but wonder about your own less than prudent, fair, or even reasonable comments concerning this preposterous charade perpetuated by Mike Nifong, Crystal Gail Mangum, Nancy Grace, Wendy Murphy, the Group of 88 and many others too numerous to mention.

As a law school graduate, a criminologist and a feminist I am appalled at the smug assumptions, detailed in your April 2, 2006 post. At that time less than two weeks had elapsed between this alleged incident and your post. Yet you announce, with absolute certainty, that a "horrific sexual assault" has taken place. On what did you base your information at such an extremely early stage of this investigation?

It is true that millions of people in the nation followed the Duke Lacrosse story. The difference between you and most of the other observers is that they realized that these were simply allegations and felt that privileged white males or not these young men still deserved due process.

If you have enough courage to actually answer some of my questions please don't announce that you really never meant to suggest that these men were axiomatically guilty. Your sobbing over the "time of tragedy and outrage" pretty much presents your obvious agenda.

And then, of course, there was your munificent praise for the totally untrustworthy and completely untruthful Crystal Gail Mangum. In your post you announce that you "respect and admire" this woman about whom, I suspect, you knew absolutely nothing at the time, including whether there were any questions as to her credibility [there were many!].

In addition, I believe that Ms. Addington appeared on the March 31, 2006 broadcast of the truly rebarbative Ms. Grace. During that telecast Ms. Addington exhorted the community to "embrace" this woman for her alleged strength and courage. May I ask if you are still major fans of Ms. Mangum now?

I think my point is that I could take you and your campaign a great deal more seriously [1]if you would bother to actually get some facts straight before making set-in-stone comments that seem extremely foolish after the fact [2] if, when you embraced a victim, you first ascertained that he or she actually was a victim and [3] you disabused yourself of the assumption that being a male always means you are a perpetrator and being a female always means you are a victim.


Janet Freiheit