Oklahomans for Reproductive Justice

Oklahomans for Reproductive Justice (OK4RJ) consists of a group of young Okies dedicated to caring and advocating for Oklahomans, using community and grassroots approaches to raise awareness and advocate for access to full reproductive freedom for all, regardless of race, class, ability, gender identity, or sexual orientation. We believe that social justice issues are inseparable from reproductive issues and advocate for a holistic view of reproductive justice Visit our site at ok4rj.org
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Posts tagged "sexual assault"

In Oklahoma, freakin’ Scott Pruitt just can’t stop wasting people’s time and let poor and/or uninsured folks get some semblance of health care already. Rep Jackie Speier summed it up nicely when she said Pruitt’s success would mark “a terrible loss for the lower-income people of Oklahoma who pay the attorney general’s salary and whose taxes are even underwriting the very lawsuit that would deny them benefits.”

2012 was a banner year for Oklahoma, and by that I mean marked by an increase of crime reports. That includes a 15% rise in rape reports, totalling out at 1,676, the highest in over a decade. Aggravated assaults were also on an upswing. Some folks want to think that this is a sign that more people are reporting their assaults, but, there’s no way to actually tell that at the moment. Additionally, that’s not a positive when the system clearly gives no shits about the survivors that do report. So. Oooooooo-k. You can get back to me on that one.

[TW: Rape Culture] But humor loses all potential for redemption when it is used in a way that makes marginalized, victimized people feel unsafe, unwanted, and invisible. That is how I feel when you make a rape joke. You made the worst, most heart-breaking, most disempowering trauma I have ever been through, and you made it into a joke. You made my suffering into a punch line. I hope that was not your intention, but those are the impacts of your words that you could have just as easily kept to yourself.

ok4rj in this post

I actually just sat at my desk and cried when I read this. This is everything I’ve been wanting to say the past few days, and now I feel so overwhelmed and happy that I found it. Oh god, thank you. THANK YOU.

(via writeoutoflove)

(via writeoutoflove)


On The Recent Failures of Law Enforcement in Oklahoma

Another piece I read for the OK4RJ Open Mic Night sponsored by OU Write Club

(tw: rape, law enforcement)

Investigations concerning a women’s prison in Kansas have confirmed a high rate of sexual assaults occurring at the facility. From the AP: 

The department said in a letter Thursday to Gov. Sam Brownback that the problems have continued since it began investigating the Topeka Correctional Facility in April 2011.

The prison population is a vastly underrepresented demographic in the United States, and  sexual assault is widely underreported or, if reported, misrepresented by law enforcement  and mismanaged by the criminal justice system (unless the perpetrator is a young man of color). In this particular instance, rape culture and willful-ignorance-of-problems-in-our-criminal-justice-system culture combine to create a very dangerous situation. 

From a 2007 piece on RHRealityCheck:

While guard-on-prisoner sexual assault is common, putting a number on the instances is difficult because so many assaults are unreported. As with sexual assault on the outside, many survivors in prison are ashamed and embarrassed to come forward, fear that their claim will be hard to prove or fear that their attackers will retaliate. In prison the fear of retaliation is heightened, as the prisoner continues to live with her attacker controlling her daily life. 

Read the rest of the piece here (although it dates from several years ago, it is still relevant to this story).

(trigger warning: extensive discussion of rape and consent regarding alcohol, rape apologism, rape denial)

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The US must stop sexual violence against immigrant farmworkers.

Hundreds of thousands of immigrant farmworker women and girls in the United States face a high risk of sexual violence and sexual harassment in their workplaces because US authorities and employers fail to protect them adequately.

In a new 95-page report, Human Rights Watch documents rape, stalking, unwanted touching, exhibitionism, or vulgar and obscene language by supervisors, employers, and others in positions of power. Most farmworkers interviewed said they had experienced such treatment or knew others who had. And most said they had not reported these or other workplace abuses, fearing reprisals. Those who had filed sexual harassment claims or reported sexual assault to the police had done so with the encouragement and assistance of survivor advocates or attorneys in the face of difficult challenges.

Farmworkers described experiences such as the following:

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(via america-wakiewakie)


[trigger warning: discussion of rape and violence]
Artemisia Gentileschi is an amazing historical figure.  A survivor who endured torture and humiliation when she tried to convict the man who raped her, she is famous for her beautifully rendered paintings of defiant women enacting violence upon men.  Above are Judith Slaying Holofernes, Judith and Maidservant, and Jael and Sisera.  It is rumored that Judith Beheading Holofernes is a self-portrait, in which Judith was painted in Gentileschi’s likeness and Holofernes was modeled after her rapist. 

(via riotnerd-deactivated20140730)


Hey y’all, one of the OK4RJ bloggers requested that we signal boost this petition. Because it’s for such a specific and achievable cause, it really, really is worth your time to sign the form, signal boost here and throw out a tweet for them. Survivors NEED these care communities, and it is seriously heartbreaking that people at BU don’t have access to what is, in my mind, such a basic and vital campus resource.

Text from the petition:
“In light of recent events, the establishment of a rape crisis center at Boston University is fitting and necessary at the university. This center would include a physical space, paid employees for both counseling and preventive work, and a budget to do outreach on campus and education programming for both students and staff. A rape crisis center would help Boston University to better serve its students by providing them with tools to prevent and cope with sexual assault crises, and to lead the way in providing a safe and healthy environment for all members of the Boston University community.

It’s been made clear, through recent events as well as in the undercurrent of a culture that excuses attackers and makes many students feel unsafe both on and off campus, that this center is both a necessary and obvious step for Boston University to create. Outside an understaffed Behavioral Medicine department, we lack safe spaces for survivors of assault to seek help, counseling, referrals, and guidance. And, clearly, our prevention measures are not enough. We all want Boston University to be the safest learning and living environment for our students that it can be, and I believe that this center is a large part of achieving that goal.


Tweet at the Center @bucgsa, or about the campaign with the hashtag #BUfightback. Shoot us an email at cgsa@bu.edu!”

Trigger warning: discussion of sexual assault, law enforcement

So my neck of the woods was rocked again this week by reports of a serial rapist confessing to victimizing multiple people, many of them OU students, over a period of 15 years while he was a student and after he left the University. Some of the details of these assaults are available, like that he ambushed his victims, broke into their houses, and used chloroform to incapacitate people. Robert Howard Bruce is, by his own admission, responsible for raping at least a dozen people in Oklahoma and other states before his incarceration for other violent crimes in 2007.

What’s really chilling about this case is not just that a serial rapist was at work in Oklahoma for over 15 years (that we know of) before he confessed to the crimes we’re hearing about now. It’s becoming clear that several organizations, including law enforcement, may not have done due diligence in warning the community about recurring attacks with similar details.

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