Statement from Kenyora Parham, Executive Director of End Rape On Campus and Tracey Vitchers, Executive Director of It’s On Us:
Last night, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat on the United States Supreme Court was filled by her polar opposite. To say we are enraged is an understatement. Justice Ginsburg was not only a feminist icon who paved the way for many women to sit in powerful positions such as her own, but she made sure every day to protect our rights to continue to fight for gender equity. Until her last day, she did not give up, we know you won’t, and neither will we. Her legacy has brought strength to the movement, and we will continue to fight against gender-based violence and discrimination.
Throughout our history, our country has struggled to uphold the ideals of its founding principles. This includes the struggle of the late 19th century’s women’s suffrage movement and its fight to gain women the right to vote. From what we know of our history of the women’s suffrage movement, women gained the right to vote in 1920, but not all women and not all people–Black people and people of color were not identified as equitable receivers of such a right until the Civil Rights Act of 1965. The roots of racism in this country are profoundly entrenched within and beyond its walls. Additionally, when it comes to reproductive and gender justice, the fight for women and gender-nonconforming people to have self-autonomy has been in constant strife. It wasn’t until 1972 with the passing of Title IX created a sea of change in gender equity within education. Yet, even this law, which was revised and published this year, has set a new dangerous precedent that protects assailants, while stifling the protections of student survivors at the intersections of their identities, who have endured campus gender-based violence and sex discrimination.
End Rape On Campus and It’s On Us come together in solidarity to condemn the confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett for Supreme Court Justice of the United States. Judge Barrett’s disturbing track record with respect to reproductive rights, racial justice, and gender-based violence demonstrates her polarizing views and how she will rule from the Supreme Court seat. Her hypocritical nature is appalling and insulting. There have been countless resources that have examined Judge Barrett’s way of ruling that isn’t impartial the way she has claimed:
- Judge Barrett is a rape apologist and defender of abusers and abusive institutions in cases of campus and prison sexual harassment and assault.
- Judge Barrett is a threat to reproductive health and rights, including her ruling against abortion in several cases.
- Judge Barrett defended overt racial discrimination in the workplace, by upholding the dismissal of a workplace discrimination case in 2019, saying that calling a Black employee the ‘n word’ does not make for a “strong enough case that harassment was occurring.”
- Judge Barrett threatens the rights of LGBTQIA+ people. Judge Barrett has long signaled she would rule in ways that deny the rights to LGBTQIA+ people, whether by repealing marriage equality or refusing to recognize the rights of transgender people.
At a time of a double pandemic of COVID-19 that has disproportionately impacted the BIPOC community and heightened awareness of systemic racism brought on by police brutality and white supremacy, just eight days before the election and over 60 million people that have already cast their vote, what we have witnessed is a flawed and corrupt democracy. We need a Supreme Court Justice who will protect the rights that we have fought for: Amy Coney Barrett is not the justice we seek.
Join End Rape On Campus and It’s On Us on Wednesday, October 28 at 4 PM, EST in collaboration with ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge for “The Power of Your Vote”. Register here: bit.ly/powerofyourvote. With less than one week left, we urge you to vote for your local local and state level officials.
We must protect the rights of those whose lives hang in the balance. Together, we continue the fight.
End Rape On Campus and It’s On Us