This is live coverage of “Storying Violence: A Cross-Disciplinary Conversation at the Top of City Hall,” a “Three Weeks in January” event. A private conversation about rape and the ways in which the narrative of rape is shaped by society is currently taking place at the top of Los Angeles City Hall in the Tom Bradley Room on the 27th floor. Guest speakers include Gail Abarbanel (Rape Treatment Center Director), Aileen Adams (Deputy Mayor), Chief Charles Beck (LAPD), Jodie Evans (Code Pink co-founder), Julie Hebert (writer and director), Dr. Jackson Katz, Professor Rose Monteiro, Dr. Francesca Polletta (UCI faculty) and Suzanne Lacy (artist). The conversation is being moderated by veteran journalist Ana Garcia.
Amazing conversation – let us hope that we one day live in a society in which such a discussion is no longer necessary
“I will not say ‘the victim is ok’” – NBC Reporter Ana Garcia
“When the police are called we’ve already failed” – Jackson Katz
Women’s leadership has grown over the years and we need to make sure that this continues
Just because the woman doesn’t look like she’s been harmed doesn’t means hasn’t been – we need to talk about the longterm effects of rape
Penn State could have had a sexual violence awareness program years ago – every school should have one and it should be publicized if the school resists
Why isn’t more money spent on prevention programs? Why don’t we teach rape education in school?
The reporting rate amongst college women is the lowest of any group. Date rape is all too common and mostly goes unreported.
Ana Garcia from NBC couldn’t even get her station to cover this event
How do we change the cycle of abuse? How can we look at this in a way that doesn’t include a sense of inevitability?
When a rapist hears other people joke about rape, it makes him believe that his actions are okay.
We as a society are responsible for calling out each other’s behavior in order to change the climate
Jackson Katz is talking about the crucial fact that there are male rape victims. Is there more sympathy for the Penn State rape victims because they are boys?
Can men have the same amount of compassion as women?
When most of the people controlling tv and film are men, how can you make sure that the story isn’t only told from the male point of view?
What can we do about the ways in which rape is portrayed in pop culture?
“What’s the twist? What’s interesting about it?” This is the way in which reporters will approach a story about rape
Chief Beck has moved from using the word “suspect” to “rapist”
We need to make sure that victims are humanized rather than seen as statistics – Chief Beck
Can we define rape as domestic terrorism?
“Accuser” vs. “victim” – the choice of language is important when a story is reported
Ana Garcia: television journalism rarely covers rape unless it can be sensationalized – “We do a poor job at reporting most stories.”
Women need a safe place in which they can tell their stories without worrying about the repercussions
Dr. Jackson Katz emphasized the importance of talking about rape in a way that involves men in the conversation
A woman from UCLA was once raped by a bus driver who locked her in the bus. The man could not be prosecuted because the woman had been so shocked that she hadn’t resisted in the way the law required.
The victim has no control over the way the story is told once (s)he reports it to the police
Talking about fiction and storytelling: the issue with talking about rape as a tragedy is that it gives one the sense that the outcome was inevitable
“It’s important to look at what motivates primarily men to do this (rape) and what society can do to reduce the instances of rape.” – Beck
20% of LAPD officers are women
“We call women victims and we call women survivors” - Gail Abarbanel (Rape Treatment Center Director)
Ana Garcia has started the discussion by asking about the importance of the words used when discussing rape
Lacy just emphasized the purpose of this conversation: to discuss the narrative of rape and the issues that exist in the way these stories are told
Suzanne Lacy just took the podium
“A conversation on how rape is shaped in our society and by whom.”
The Deputy Mayor is currently welcoming us to the conversation and introducing the speakers