A UVA student writes in support of “Jackie”

A UVA undergraduate who was a suite-mate of “Jackie”, the woman at the center of the ongoing controversy surrounding Rolling Stone’s story about rape at UVA, has written a letter defending her friend. She writes:

I fully support Jackie, and I believe wholeheartedly that she went through a traumatizing sexual assault. I remember my first semester here, and I remember Jackie’s. Jackie came to UVA bright, happy and bubbly. She was kind, funny, outgoing, friendly, and a pleasant person to be around. That all notably changed by December 2012, and I wasn’t the only one who noticed. Our suite bonded that first semester and talked many times about the new troubles we were facing in college. Jackie never mentioned anything about her assault to us until much later. But I, as well as others, noticed Jackie becoming more and more withdrawn and depressed.

And continues:

While I cannot say what happened that night, and I cannot prove the validity of every tiny aspect of her story to you, I can tell you that this story is not a hoax, a lie or a scheme. Something terrible happened to Jackie at the hands of several men who have yet to receive any repercussions.

Whether the details are correct or not, and whether the reporting was faulty, or the hazy memories of a traumatizing night got skewed…the blame should never fall on the victim’s shoulders. Jackie is a victim, as are so many others, men and women, young and old.

Meanwhile, because the internet is disgusting, a conservative pundit (I refuse to call him a journalist) has released on twitter what he claims is Jackie’s real name, her pinterest account, photos of her, and her home address. (He released the latter pieces of information after giving her an ultimatum and demanding that she immediately say her story was a lie.) Jezebel has more information.

Open Letter on U Oregon strike

The University of Oregon is using some extremely disturbing tactics for dealing with its strike by Graduate Teaching Fellows, including a threat of deportation. There’s an open letter protesting this by philosopher Mark Alfano, which you can sign here. Readers of this blog might be especially interested to note that a key issue in the strike is the university’s unwillingness to grant GTFs a measly TWO WEEKS leave for childbirth or illness.