Starting Your Dreams Later In Life and Embracing the Detour

Jenee Darden speaking at Creative Mornings I know it's been a while since I've posted anything but that's because of my job. I'm working as a reporter covering Oakland and I host an arts segment on the radio where I get to interview amazing artists from around the Bay Area. Plus I'm publicizing my book  and building my speaking career!  You know what's funny? I thought this would all happen by the time I was 27-30.  Nope. That wasn't God's plan for me. I'm finally beginning to do the things I've wanted to do and I'm almost 40 years old. Some people reading this who are 40 will say 40 is still young. But some younger people reading may think 40 is nearly ancient. But I'm writing this post for those who like me, thought their career and personal dreams would come true much early in life. I'm here to tell you not to give up.  You know, death inspires life. A number of my relatives and friends have passed away, ranging in

What's Most Disturbing About Al Franken Groping Leann Tweeden

Al Franken
Photo by Matt H. Wade/WikiCommons
Man, it's raining perps. And Sen. Al Franken is another drop in this storm of high-profile sexual violators being exposed for not keeping their damn hands to themselves. In Sen. Franken's case, he allegedly couldn't keep his tongue to himself.

KABC radio anchor Leeann Tweeden  recently came forward about then-Saturday Night Live writer Al Franken sexually harassing her and assaulting while on tour overseas in2006 to entertain U.S. troops. She said he forcefully kissed her during rehearsal for a skit. Read the details here if you don't know them already.

You've probably seen the photo of Franken groping Tweeden's breasts while she's asleep back. He's smiling like it's so cute and funny. It's not. His cockiness disturbed me. He didn't have to document the groping. But he knew nothing would happen to him.

That speaks to how the punishment for men, especially powerful men like Sen Franken, is light to none when they assault women. It speaks to his male privilege in knowing that he can grab a woman's breasts, in her sleep, without consent and pose for a photo because not a damn will happen to him.  Our rape culture that blames women, along with Sen. Franken's wealth, inlfuence and gender privilege has given him a pass.

Men will continue to feel entitled to women's bodies, because society doesn't harshly punish boys and men who do violate. The first time I recall being groped was by middle school boys. Boys (mis)learn early that a girl's breasts, ass, thigh, etc. are literally up for grab because they have a penis.

Al Franken was a writer for a legendary TV show and eventually became a U.S. senator.  Tweeden didn't say anything years ago because of his power. Like Tweeden said, who's going to believe her? She was a Playboy model. Posing on the cover of Playboy doesn't mean she wants any and every man to touch her.  Well, Leeanne Tweeden bravely came forward.

Good for her.

Sen. Franklin has issued an apology is willing to cooperate with an investigation.

I know a lot of women. Women of different races, cultures, sizes, sexualities, religious beliefs, economic classes, etc. I can't think of any who HAVE NOT either been sexually assaulted or sexually harassed.  I know a number of men who have been victims too.  Terry Crews is brave for sharing his story of a Hollywood agent groping him.

I hope none of these people's careers suffer. People thinking they can do this kind of stuff needs to stop.