Luz Media l March 2, 2021

America Prefers Teachers Who Offer Themselves as Tribute

As the coronavirus continues to take lives, the lives of teachers and school staff included, the good-educator-as-unflinching-martyr trope is being used to shame those of us who express concerns about IRL instruction. Last month, New York Times’ columnist David Brooks penned a screed that all but accused educators critical of their working conditions of laziness,

Luz Media l December 9, 2020

From Persephone To Tara Reade, Rape Victims Are Relegated To Everyday Hells

As Wagatwe Wanjuki lip syncs, “Actual goals, AF!” her TikTok performance unfolds to the tune and lyrics of Eva Gutowski’s Literally My Life. Clad in athleisure, Wanjuki flashes a grin and a thumb’s up sign. Glitter splashes across the screen and she imitates a victory dance while this message hovers overhead: “Me finding out my rapist graduated law school and became a lawyer.”

Those of us who are the victims of rapists experience the ramifications of sexual assault across our lifespans. One of the ugliest and most painful dimensions of rape’s aftermath is exactly what Wanjuki so brilliantly communicated through TikTok. Rape culture requires the majority of sexual assault victims to co-exist in a society where our rapists do more than move freely. In a rape culture, our attackers thrive.

Luz Media l November 18, 2020

Racial Pretendians

After taking a sip of wine, Dad explained that certain Americans like inventing stories, especially tales that turn them into native people. Dad’s thesis illuminated nothing. The girl’s behavior still made no sense. “But why?” I demanded. “They think it’s exotic,” Dad over-asserted the word exotic to heighten its vulgarity, “and, it eases their conscience. It makes

Luz Media l October 29, 2020

When Pornography Invades Privacy

In my latest for Luz Collective I discuss Jeffrey Toobin, the myth of the “accidental assault”, and the pervasiveness of the ‘oops’ defense. “I taught high school for over a decade and my years spent working with U.S. teenagers taught me that many girls’ first experiences of sexual assault now happen through screens. One way