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In an April 29, 2014 essay for the Huffington Post, Emily Renda writes that her story (of her own supposed rape during her freshman year) is “ordinary, normal, average, not unusual and practically commonplace” – all that in just the first paragraph; if Renda is to be believed then, getting raped at U.Va. (or perhaps at any institution of “higher learning”) is hardly different in occurrence or frequency than getting a morning cup of coffee.
Just about the entire rest of her post talks about the importance of fellow victims and their caregivers/advocates hugging it out, giving comfort and burning candles, except where she nonchalantly mentions how all this extraordinary support from others allowed her to feel safe again, “so that it didn’t matter that I saw my assailant on Grounds”.
Though Renda’s claims of the ubiquity of rape seem a bit exaggerated, her credibility doesn’t really begin to come into question until one considers her Huffington piece in its entirety, and then comes across some of her other claims, found elsewhere.
In testimony given before a U.S. Senate Committee in June, 2014, Renda disclosed that during her own rape attack she was subjected to explicit force that included strangulation, loss of consciousness and injuries to her head and torso. In further testimony, she claimed she “resisted formally reporting and seeking disciplinary action after the assault because I fixated on the fact that my assailant had parents who cared about him”, and “I did not want to ruin his life over what I then viewed as a mistake.”
FOIA White House task force member, UVA employee and SOURCE for Rolling Stone story -> @emilyrenda Look at her avi! pic.twitter.com/3Pv8zbHyli
— =^..^= (@LibertyLynx) December 6, 2014
Renda, raped and attacked to the point of nearly being murdered, appears to have done nothing later to seek the incarceration of a man who might very well go on to injure or kill other women, even after she 1) already felt secure enough to be able to see her assailant walking around campus and feel that the University was “her place too”, and 2) knowing and telling others of the importance of coming forward to report incidents of sexual assault.
In addition to all the above, most recently Renda, who stresses repeatedly of the need to not judge, adjudicate, or investigate, but to believe and support unreservedly any individual who comes forward to report being sexually assaulted, said about “Jackie” and the Rolling Stone story, “I don’t know what I believe” [about the case].
Given Renda’s role in pushing for a reduction of due process rights on American college campuses it’s surprising that Jackie’s rape counsellor can’t keep straight details of her own rape story! There are dramatic differences between a Huffington Post article about rape – that she herself wrote – and her senate testimony transcript. That Senate transcript mentions Jackie’s fake rape as a reason to erode due process.
Others in the Twitterverse have noticed the role Renda played in the fake rape story.
— Title IX on Campus (@TitleIXonCampus) December 8, 2014
Renda was quoted here in a piece about how the Rolling Stone story calls into question other rape survivors.
— Molly Minturn (@Molly_Minturn) December 5, 2014
Renda hasn’t always been properly identified in the reporting.
Little mentioned in all of this is that Erdely failed to point out that survivor Emily Renda now works for the University. Puzzling omission
— Jennifer Mendelsohn (@CleverTitleTK) December 5, 2014