How to Help: The Last Sip, Episode Three, April 29
Good news from the Korean Peninsula.
After last year's drama (the United States' dear leader called North Korea's dear leader "Rocket Man", who in turn replied with 2017's most Googled insult, "dotard"), this week delivered some signs of hope that all-out nuclear war could be avoided. In a stunning show of unity, South Korea's Moon Jae-in and North Korea's Kim Jong-un talked it out. Then they gave us some of the best prom pictures ever when they hugged it out. The diplomacy suggests real progress toward denuclearization of the peninsula and a formal end to the Korean War.
On today's show, Imara speaks with Scott Snyder (Senior Fellow for Korea Studies and Director of the Program on U.S.-Korea Policy at the Council on Foreign Relations) about these new developments, and what they mean for the Trump Administration's diplomacy with North Korea. You can follow Scott A. Snyder on Twitter and check out his book South Korea at the Crossroads.
How to help keep the peace
While these developments are encouraging, peace isn't guaranteed. One thing Americans can do is try prevent our own leader from messing it up.
Also: support the people of North Korea by connecting with Liberty in North Korea (which helps North Korean refugees reach freedom and safety), the Citizens' Alliance for North Korean Human Rights, and the Database Center for North Korean Human Rights.
The Bill Cosby verdict.
For decades, sexual assault allegations followed “America’s dad”. But even with public accusations by 60 women, he has never been convicted. Until this week. Cosby was just convicted of three counts of aggravated indecent assault, which could land him up to 10 years behind bars. The verdict is a vindication for the survivors of his abuse, and a milestone in the #MeToo era. You can read 35 of the stories of the brave women who came forward about their experiences with Bill Cosby here.
On today's episode, Imara talks with several leaders in the field about the meaning of the verdict.
Treva Lindsey, Associate Professor of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at The Ohio State University, has written about how decades of activism by Black women laid the groundwork for the verdict. Read Prof. Lindsey's must-read piece in Vox with historical context for the decision, and find more of Prof. Lindsey's writing on Twitter.
Also check out a few of the groups she discusses: A Long Walk Home, Black Women's Blueprint, and INCITE! are all doing survivor-centered work to stop and overcome sexual violence against women of color.
Carolyn West, Professor of Psychology at the University of Washington, writes prolifically about violence in the lives of Black women. She talks with Imara about the history of the sexual economy of slavery, which commodified Black women's bodies and shaped long-lasting sexual stereotypes about Black women.
Dr. West explains that because of the unique American history of institutional rape, Black women have never been adequately protected from sexual assault, and the resulting societal images assigned to Black women have only worsened the risk. Trans women are especially victimized because they live at the intersection of multiple forms of oppression. Check out more of Dr. West's work here.
Aishah Shahidah Simmons, award-winning Black feminist lesbian producer of NO! The Rape Documentary, launched the Love With Accountability project, which prioritizes healing and justice for survivors of child sexual abuse and adult rape, primarily outside the punitive criminal justice system. Visit the Love With Accountability website and follow the #LoveWithAccountability hashtag on Twitter.
Here are a few things you can do to help stop sexual assault, and to find support if you're a survivor.
Connect with and support organizations working to stop sexual assault. Tarana Burke's me too movement supports survivors of sexual violence, and the Times Up Legal Defense Fund has raised millions of dollars to provide legal aid to survivors of workplace discrimination and sexual assault.
If you're a survivor, find help from: Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN, which also runs the National Sexual Assault Online Hotline), the National Alliance to End Sexual Violence, the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, End Rape on Campus, ReThink, Collective Action for Safe Spaces, the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence, and Hollaback. You can find a much longer list here.
Men: Explore and support ReThink's work with young men and boys to break down the cultural norms that underpin sexual violence. Check out Rethink Masculinity, a two-month men's consciousness-building group hosted by Collective Action for Safe Spaces, ReThink, and the DC Rape Crisis Center. (*Applications for the next cohort are due July 14th, 2018.)
Check out lots more ways to do something about the day's news on How to Help's main page.