My Year Ripping Off the Web With the Daily Mail Online

On July 11 of last year, I arrived to work at the MailOnline newsroom in New York City and saw Keith Poole, our managing editor, standing outside smoking a cigarette. Even from a hundred yards away, it was clear that Poole—a generally pleasant Englishman who was the managing editor of the Daily Mail at the time—was… » 3/04/15 5:50pm 3/04/15 5:50pm

Storytime With Mom: A Genealogy of Rape

"If two people come together," my mother began, "who've never had any power except by the way of abuse, it's going to be bad. Both of us had power exerted over us as children. I eventually learned that as an adult, I was still doing the dance, seeking out abusive relationships. That doesn't mean it was my fault. But… » 3/01/15 3:13pm 3/01/15 3:13pm

Students' Stories of Depressingly Common Run-Ins with Campus Cops

Saturday night, after reading Times columnist Charles Blow's account of his son's detainment at gunpoint by Yale campus police, I was transported back to my own run-in with UCLA campus police in 2009. It was a typically relaxed Sunday evening, and I was headed home from the library. As I passed Ackerman Student Union… » 1/27/15 4:49pm 1/27/15 4:49pm

How Should an Abortion Be?

A pregnant woman I didn't know struck up a conversation with me at a party recently. We chatted amicably about the weather (bad), the Golden Globes (fine) and the food at the party (great) before the conversation turned—inevitably, it felt—towards birth (hers). She told me she was nervous but excited, that she could… » 1/23/15 11:50am 1/23/15 11:50am

When the Opera Acts Like It's Never Seen a Black Person Before

The man at the opera tells me I'm disgusting, but in a lot of ways, he's lucky. There is no moisture in the air. I slept the night before in braids. It's a matinee, so I'm holding a very strong day vibe: more Tracee Ellis-Ross in Black-ish than Diana Ross's 1983 Central Park performance. My hair is being tame for my… » 1/20/15 12:10pm 1/20/15 12:10pm

My Vassar College Faculty ID Makes Everything OK

The fourth time a Poughkeepsie police officer told me that my Vassar College Faculty ID could make everything OK was three years ago. I was driving down Wilbur Avenue. When the white police officer, whose head was way too small for his neck, asked if my truck was stolen, I laughed, said no, and shamefully showed him… » 11/30/14 2:30pm 11/30/14 2:30pm

NYPD Harassment Stories: Feeling Helpless When an Officer Hits on You

Amid the police terror that has swept the nation these last few months, there has been a missing facet from the conversation: the fact that women are brutalized by cops just as severely as men. For every John Crawford and Ezell Ford there is an Ersula Ore or a Marlene Pinnock (you can view the footage of Pinnock's… » 9/16/14 4:59pm 9/16/14 4:59pm

The Things We Suffer

It's a Thursday night in August, just past 10 p.m., and my mother is texting me. This might seem like a harmless nuisance except my mother is not supposed to text me. Two years ago I asked her to give me space and not reach out. She responded with an "ok" and proceeded to respect my wishes for 13 days. Nobody's mother… » 9/09/14 3:13pm 9/09/14 3:13pm

Have a Horrible Christmas With This Insane Issue of That's Life! Mag

According to its website, That's Life! is "Britain's leading real-life magazine." Each issue is packed with "the most inspirational, emotional and incredible reads that will leave you stunned and surprised." And Christmastime is no different: 'Tis the season for adultery, betrayal and murder. » 12/09/13 1:50pm 12/09/13 1:50pm

Positivity is Bullshit When You Have Cancer

My eyelashes are mascara-less stumps and I’ve been commando in the same stained, hot pink sweats for 36 hours, but I don’t care. It’s 2011, and my mom and I are at my grandmother’s house in Michigan hoping for some rest after a hellish year spent cycling through chemo, radiation, and surgeries. » 11/23/13 3:14pm 11/23/13 3:14pm

Confessions of a Recovering Black Debutante

I'm a recovering debutante. I wouldn't go as far as saying a belle because I ain't with that frilly froo froo. Or girdles. I have a brain and I use it. I don’t own too many slips, or dresses, or wear much white. I don’t own a lacy parasol except for that one time where I had to accessorize with my lace ribbons for my… » 9/14/13 1:00pm 9/14/13 1:00pm

Amanda Bynes Appeared to Me Under the Supermoon Late Saturday Night

Once upon a time there lived a beautiful young woman, who flew east through the clouds following a series of vehicular crimes in order to develop a fashion line and a perfume line as well as many other exciting projects. Sadly, far away from the Pacific sun, her spirit hardened into something strange; a cold, bitter,… » 6/24/13 5:23pm 6/24/13 5:23pm

The Story of One Prison Rape, In an Inmate's Own Words

Today, the ACLU announced that it is filing a federal lawsuit on behalf of prisoners at the East Mississippi Correctional Facility, a private prison in Meridian, Mississippi. The suit alleges that EMCF is "hyper-violent, grotesquely filthy and dangerous." One example of the jail's dangers: this handwritten letter from… » 5/30/13 2:15pm 5/30/13 2:15pm