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Misplaced Priorities March 9, 2011

Posted by jeneypeney in femme writes, i'm just sayin', the 'f' word, what the hell.
2 comments

I know it may seem like I am beating a dead horse when I bring up how much the University of Notre Dame has completely an utterly disappointed me in the worst way possible. But I cannot be silent about this…

Not once, but twice the University has failed to protect and bring justice to my Saint Mary’s sisters.

Not once, but twice they pushed their sexual assault cases to the side and brushed their sloppy investigations under the rug as if this all was an episode of the Chicago Code.

Not once, but twice the University that had become such an integral part of my life broke my heart.

Yesterday I came across an article about the football program installing remote video cameras in the football practice complex as a result of the death of Declan Sullivan. The article goes on to say that the family is very pleased that these steps are being taken to avoid another tragic accident like the one that killed their son.

News coverage of Declan’s death have continued to report that the University is “researching what caused the lift to fall” and “how this can be avoided in the future.” I guess the fact that winds gushed at over 50mph and the lift wasn’t supposed to be used if winds exceeded 35mph isn’t enough evidence for them. The University has been in contact with Sullivan’s family to assure that Declan is memorialized and remembered.

I do not want to belittle Declan’s death at all. I was once a member of the Notre Dame Football family, and his death hit me hard. He was far too young and had too promising a future to have his life taken away so suddenly and I doubt I will be forgetting this tragedy any time soon.

However, being a woman, a feminist, a survivor a sexual assault, and an alum of Saint Mary’s College – I cannot help but be outraged at the disparities between the actions the University has taken to handle the deaths of Declan Sullivan and Lizzy Seeburg as well as the second assault allegation revealed to have been poorly handled by Notre Dame.

The University has done everything in their power to investigate Declan’s death; rightly so. But their investigations of the two sexual assaults were minimal – and that’s a generous statement.

The administration has been in constant contact with the Sullivan family while the Seeburgs have all but got down on their knees and begged for Rev. Jenkins to return their phone calls.

Now, they are spending thousands of dollars on fiber-optic remote cameras to be installed on the practice fields to avoid another death like Declan’s. What are they doing to help avoid more sexual assaults of the women of both Saint Mary’s and Notre Dame? Nothing but trying to cover their asses for ignoring them in the first place.

While I do  understand that these three cases are all very different for the simple fact that Declan’s life literally ended, I simply do NOT understand why the sexual assault cases were handled with a completely disregard for decency, justice, and tact?

Is it because these girls were “SMC Chiks” and not “Domers”? Is it because the girls were drunk and “asked for it”? Is it because the administration is so blinded by their Catholic values and the need to keep their precious campus to absurdly guarded from the outside world? Is it because they think there is absolutely, positively no way in hell that the upstanding, intelligent, impressive men of Notre Dame could ever commit such a crime?

Whatever the reason is, I am disgusted by you, Notre Dame. I have no idea how you can live with yourselves and claim you are “good Christians” when you ignore the cries of your daughters and their families. The lives of those two girls have forever been changed by this and you’re  indifference to their pleas of help will not make their road to recovery any easier.

You should be ashamed of your ignorance and disregard for the lives of the women on your campus and the one across the street – I know I am.

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Emotionally Exhausted February 18, 2011

Posted by jeneypeney in all growed up, being appropriate is overrated, i'm just sayin', life, piss and moan, the 'f' word.
4 comments

I have always been a passionate person. I consider it one of my greatest strengths as well as one of my worst weaknesses. I can be a fiercely loyal friend, but sometimes it’s to an extent where I let your problems infect my own life. I will fight for what I believe in, but sometimes it’s to a point that I’m just beating a dead horse.

I am passionate and I am not sorry.

I am trying to pull this post together without going off on wild tangents or becoming so incoherent that I fail to get my point across – because this is important to me. I think I may have failed but bear with me…

For those of you who are friends with me on facebook, you may have noticed that I am have become one of those overly irritating “This is my cause! Read it!” kind of people. I just realized I had become this person late this week and for that, I am sorry.

But some of these bills that are being presented, supported, and pushed through all levels of government are honestly so terrifying and infuriating I cannot just sit back and let things happen. I need to stand up for what I believe in. I need to to use my little soap box to try and put a stop to the madness before life as know it falls apart. I need to let my passion come out.

First I heard about the GOP attempting to re-define the definition of rape to cut off federal aid of abortions to rape victims. Before you get up in arms about the abortion part, know this – regardless of whether you are pro-life or pro-choice, redefining what rape is and even considering that some forms of rape are not forcible is beyond repulsive. As a survivor of sexual abuse(s), this one cut me real deep.  [NOTE: I understand that the “forcible” wording was removed from the bill, but the fact that it was there to begin with is still terrible.]

Then I found out that the place I go to get all my lady-health care is on the cusp of being denied federal funding. Why do I go to Planned Parenthood rather than a gynecologist at my doctor’s office? Why do I care that funding for them is being cut? Because Planned Parenthood allows me to AFFORD my lady-health care. Simple as that. I don’t go there because I’m some kind of loose, baby killing left-wing radical. No.I go to Planned Parenthood because I have been able to get my yearly pap-smears, birth control prescriptions, and other services without have to forgo eating that month.

Third, I find out the new governor of Wisconsin is in the process of breaking down worker’s unions all in the name of fixing the budget (with the exception of police and firefighters clever bastard, eh?). Considering my father is a member of a worker’s union in Wisconsin (not by choice either – the company he worked at for over two decades was shut down and his position was moved to the new company which already had this system in place), is the sole bread-winner of my family, and struggles to support my mother and two brothers as it is? This bill Walker is trying to pass scares the hell out of me.

It doesn’t help that people in my facebook news feed who don’t even LIVE in Wisconsin and work at ‘white collar’ jobs are supporting what Walker is doing. To them I have one thing to say… Step out of your ivory towers and shut. the. fuck. up. Go outside of the little box of your own life and think about how these bills affects families like mine.

I feel as if my country is fighting tooth and nail against me because I am a woman and I am middle class. For the first time in my life, I feel like I have been failed by the system.

Between my spring sports travel schedules starting up, taking two extremely demanding grad classes this semester, trying to pay deposits for the wedding, waiting to hear back from The Actual’s new job about his passing the background check and finger prints, discovering that my alma mater and her brother institution has once again disappointed me to the verge of tears, and dealing with life in general? I’m tuckered out, folks.

I apologize if I offended anyone with this post or my incessant facebook updates – but I am not sorry for being passionate and standing up for my rights. Because if I don’t, who will?

Violenced UnSilenced December 20, 2010

Posted by jeneypeney in life, the 'f' word, Uncategorized.
1 comment so far

I’ve written a few posts regarding the sexual abuse I have suffered throughout my life – and Maggie’s blog, Violence UnSilenced is the reason I had the strength to do it.

I have mentioned certain instances and have made vague references to what has actually happened to me – but my post for VU goes into detail about one of the worst ones.

I submitted this post for the blog back in March; it is just now being published.

Even if you don’t care to read my post, please go read the other posts and comment. It’s so important for those women to know they are not alone.