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Monday, 18 March 2013

Open Letter to CNN

By: Liberate Zealot

As many people are well aware, the primary Steubenville Rape Trial is over, and the rapists were convicted (and will likely serve 3 year or less between the two of them).
Justice is served?
Hardly, but that hasn't stopped CNN, specifically Fredricka Whitfield, Paul Callan, Candy Crowley, and Poppy Harlow for feeling bad for the rapists.
One way to fight this horrible example of rape apology and rape culture is to publicly call in out in the broad sense, another is to personally call out the people responsible.  I'm attempting to kill two birds with one stone.

"I'm writing to you because your reporters commentary over the Steubenville Rape Trial and its verdict has been absolutely reprehensible.  Reporter after reporter bemoaned the fate of the rapists and how their "promising lives were ruined" for being held responsible for the crimes they committed.  Whitfield, Harlow, Callan, and Crowley all expressed sympathy for the rapists and much of the footage was focused on the rapists and their families crying after the verdict was read.
I can think of no other instance where reporters try to heavy handedly drum up support and sympathy for people convicted of serious crimes. Certainly the other stations did not engage in this.  And the actions of CNN's news teams are especially inappropriate considering the ubiquity of rape and the lack of rape convictions that exists in the United States.  The commentary of your reporters and film shown not only speak poorly of your ability to show serious news without bias, but also perpetuates this serious rape culture.  Such actions are inexcusable.
I expect CNN and it's specific reporters and news hosts to issue public apologies for their inappropriate and harmful language while reporting on the Steubenville Rape Trial.  I also expect CNN to feature an expert on rape and rape culture so as to fight against the harmful ideas that you and your representative perpetuated.  I will continue to boycott and publicly call out CNN, and encourage all of my friends and colleagues to do so, until CNN, Whitfield, Harlow, Callan, and Crowley all apologize and explain why such coverage was inexcusable." 

Please feel free to copy and share the letter, and use it yourself when calling out CNN.


You can contact CNN on-line

Or tweet them and the responsible reports:
@CNN
@FWhitfield
@crowleyCNN
@PoppyHarlowCNN
@PaulCallan


Sign the Petition

And a follow-up, considering it's been five days with no apology:

I'm absolutely horrified that CNN and its reporters have refused to apologize for their abhorrent rape apology during their reporting of the Steubenville Rape Trial Verdict.  I cannot believe that any station with the pretense of serious reporting would not only engage in such behavior, but refuse to make restitution for their perpetuation of rape culture.
You had the opportunity to show growth and to educate America on a topic that we desperately need enlightened.
For too long has rape been framed as something that just happens, with rapists less than culpable.  Where making reports against rapists is treated as "ruining their lives", with no regard to the fact that the rapist is the active person, the criminal.
You've had the chance to apologize.   To turn this into an opportunity to educate America on consent, rape, and rape culture.  Instead you give us nothing but silence.  On top of the sickening dose of rape apology you've already spewed.
You and your reporters are completely unacceptable. 

1 comment:

  1. Disgusting, and not nearly an isolated event in the States. Are male gang rapists somehow exempt if they are also athletes? Sure seems like it.
    I'm glad I don't live there anymore.

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