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NSVRC Blogs by Joan Tabachnick

 Dear Engaged Bystander:  For more than a year, I have focused this bystander blog on preventing sexual violence. As I complete this last blog entry, I hope to offer an equally compelling argument for us to extend bystander intervention AFTER the abuse has been perpetrated.


Dear Engaged Bystander:  This is Part II of my interview with Jackson Katz


Dear Engaged Bystander:  As my year as the NSVRC blogger comes to a close, I thought about who are the people who can provide insights to carry us all forward. Jackson Katz immediately came to mind. He is one of the first to apply bystander thinking, interventions and strategies to prevent sexual violence. So I am thrilled to have had a chance to speak with him and add his words to these last few blogging days. 

Dear Engaged Bysander:  I recently heard the keynote from the annual MASOC/MATSA conference and was moved by the research Ray Knight presented. I know that sounds odd to be “moved” by research, but I was. It was a fabulous presentation and what I loved about it was that he challenged us to base our prevention programs on research evidence – more than just good ideas.

Dear Engaged Bystander:  I often hear people question whether doing something (or saying something) will have any impact at all?  Maybe we have all been there... 

Dear Engaged Bystander:  With only one week to go in my blogging, I wanted to reflect back on some issues and articles I missed along the way.  Do you ever wish you had said something but didn't?  Well, there is one article that has stuck in my mind for a while now. A letter to the Ethicist appeared in the NY Times Magazine section a few weeks ago. 


Here is the letter and the response: 


Dear Engaged Bystander:  This week, I had the chance to go to New York City and saw the NSVRC public service announcement in Times Square. I grew up outside of NYC and this PSA had a lot of significance for me.


Dear Engaged bystander:  I absolutely believe that ALL of us have many bystander stories to tell. In fact, if we interact with people every day, we have a story would could tell every single day. If we look at a time in our lives where we were being teased, sexually harassed or worse and someone did something – there is a story to tell. Or if we look at a time in our lives where we saw someone else who was uncomfortable or teased, sexually harassed or worse and we said something or did something to stop what was going on – there is a story to tell. 

Dear Engaged Bystander: So I had my 15 minutes of fame on Monday. Through the NSVRC I got a call from Harpo Productions (yes the Oprah network!) asking if I would be interested in being a guest on the Dr. Laura Berman show. She is on their radio network and well, of COURSE I would want to be on the show. It is a great show and Dr. Berman is engaging, asks good questions and her approach is supportive rather than antagonist towards her guests. I was excited, actually thrilled and flattered to be asked!

Dear Engaged Bystander:  A few months ago, I had the pleasure and privilege to interview Cassandra Thomas , Director of the Houston Area Women Center for her incredible story of hope.  In her story, she certainly busted my own stereotype of a college fraternity when some friends at a fraternity literally pulled her from a car because she was drunk, with a guy she did not know and they also knew she was recovering from a recent rape.  Cassandra’s honesty about this event is both moving and profound.  She also takes this story and the commitment of these young men into her work today where sh