Chanel Miller, Writer, Assault discussed on Call Your Girlfriend


Many of us became aware of Chanel Miller's gifts as a writer before we learned her name after she was assaulted at Stanford the perpetrator Brock Turner stood trial and at its conclusion Chanel who had remained anonymous throughout read a victim. Impact Statement to the court that echoed around the Internet now that she has shared her identity publicly and written a book under her own name. She has also recorded herself reading that statement. And here's an excerpt hurt. Instead of taking time to heal. I was taking time to recall the night in excruciating detail in order to prepare for the attorneys questions that would be invasive aggressive in designed to steer me off course to contradict myself my sister phrased in ways to manipulate really my answers instead of his attorney saying. Did you notice any abrasions. He said you didn't notice any abrasions. Rate this was a game of strategy as if I could be tricked out of my own worth the sexual assault had been so clear but instead here I was at the trial answering questions. Like how old are you. How much do you weigh? What did you eat that day or would you have for dinner? Who Made Dinner? Did you drink with dinner. No not even water. When did you drink? How much did you drink? What container did you drank out of love? Who gave you the drink? How much do you usually drink? Who dropped you off at this party? At what time. But where exactly what were you wearing. Why why are you going to this party what you do when you got there? Are you sure you did that. What time did you do that? What is this text mean? Who are you texting? When did you urinate? where did you urinate? With whom did you urinate. Outside was your phone on silent when your sister called. Do you remember Knbr. Silencing it really because on page fifty three I'd like to point out they you said it was set to ring. Did you drink in college. You said you were a party animal. How many times did you blackout as you party at frats? Are you serious with your boyfriend. Are you sexually active with him. When did you start dating? Would would you ever cheat. You have a history of cheating. What do you mean? When he said he wanted to reward him? You remember what time you woke up. Were you wearing your card again. What color was your Cardigan? Your member anymore from that night. No okay. Well we'll let Brock Philip fill it in. I was pummeled with narrowed pointed questions that I suspected my personal life. Love Life Past Life Life family life. Inane questions accumulating trivial details to try and find an excuse for this guy who had me half naked before even even bothering to ask for my name after physical assault. I was assaulted with questions designed to attack me to say. See her facts. Don't line up. She's out of her mind. She's practically an alcoholic. She probably wanted to hook up. He's like an athlete right. They were both drunk. Whatever hospital staff she remembers is after the fact why take it into account brock as a lot at stake having a really hard time right now and finally to girls everywhere I am with you on nights when you feel alone I am with you when people doubt you or dismiss you? I am with you I every day for you. Never stop fighting. I believe view as the author and the Mart Once wrote lighthouses. Don't go running all over an island looking for for boats to save they. Just stand there shining. Although I can't save every vote I hope that by speaking today. You absorbed a small amount of light a small knowing that you can't be silenced. A small satisfaction that justice was served a small assurance that we are getting somewhere and a big big knowing that you are important unquestionably. You are untouchable. You are beautiful you you are to be valued respected undeniably. Every minute of every day you are powerful and nobody can take that away from you girls everywhere I am with you and now here's on me not to talking to Chanel about that time in her life about the years since which she's written about in her new book no my name my name is Miller and I'm the author of no my name. Hi Chanel thank you so much for coming on. Call your girlfriend today. Hello Amina Gina. Thank you so much for having me. It really means a lot that you are here. I really really really really really enjoyed your memoir. Not It was such a both like a beautiful and powerful piece of writing so thank you thank you. Yeah I mean where do where do we even start. Yes can you. You Walk me through the process of deciding to write this book. Oh yeah I mean writing something. I've always wanted to do. No question from a very young age so I was blissed out by the opportunity at the same time I was really nervous to immerse myself back inside the case again and I think in Western culture especially Salihi people pride others for moving on and I felt like I was supposed to be moving on and mm focusing on different things but I realize the best thing for me was actually to go backward and to revisit my passed and spend a lot of time there and to make sense of it so that I could fully move on so a lot of writing was accepting that I I would be backtracking lot and being okay with that and realizing that that's progress You know when I watched got sixty minute interview that you did yeah. It was It was powerful for a lot of reasons for me but I think the two things that struck me the most were thinking like Oh of course. He's a writer we. We all heard that beautiful letter that you wrote to the judge and I was like I can't believe that I had not occurred to me that you are a writer and I think that the other thing too that like really kind of knocks me on my ass as seeing your presentation and being like Oh this a person is white and Asian American. No and I just. I don't know like it's surprise me that I was surprised and it surprised me. I was feeling the feelings that I it was feeling. And you know and I think that's so much of that for me was also just like in my head like who is emily. Oh you know. And and Emily Darrow is is a white woman for you know for for many constructed reasons that are both fair and unfair and I think that even just like inner like having you on your own terms like present who you were with something that was really It was a really powerful experience for me and so I you wonder how that felt for you. Yeah I think you know looking through court documents and seeing the form I I believe the probation officer had filled out seeing that she had checked that the victims ethnishity was white without even bothering to ask me or four even wondering that it could be different or seeing my last name Miller in assuming that I'm only white it just I spoke to the fact that she wasn't taking the time to understand or to truly know the person who was inside this case So I did feel like it was important to be visible. You know struggled a lot with the decision to come forward on on one hand. I had achieved privacy and safety. And you know that's what we're trained to want you know it's like any victim is lucky to have her identity preserved at the same time. I thought that's not enough. What I really want is to be able to be fully scene gene and still accepted and to still feel proud of myself and safe? We should be able to be visible and safe. We shouldn't didn't have to conceal everything about ourselves just to move on in life so I wanted to be seen and I and I wanted people to know so that a multifaceted that I'm much more than people may have even been able to imagine at the time you write in the book that like growing up. Asian American made you feel used to being unseen two never fully being known not outfield possible that I could be the protagonist and you know I think that you are really touching on something that is so is both like very painful and also very real this idea. You know for Asian American women that intersection of racism and sexism. Is You know it's something that is shared by probably a a lot of people of color but it's also like very unique to your own personal experience rate totally. I think you know for people people of Color. It's much more common to be dismissed and for others to assume that we won't make a fuss that we won't have the power or resources to push back or to make others care. I felt throughout the process that I was being underestimated estimated that I was being perceived as someone who is soft spoken. Who wouldn't put up a fight and maybe in the end that served me They didn't know what I was capable of. But you know of course we are. We are allowed and we will not go down down quietly and really tired of others thinking that just because I'm quiet or because I cry. It means I'm soft or a pushover. That's it's not the case I think we have a fierceness and we will use it when necessary even if we're not employing it all the time time. Yeah you know when I was doing research to speak to you I found out a lot of stuff that was very surprising though is now either in twenty fifteen. The Asian Asian Pacific Institute on Gender based violence found that like somewhere between twenty one and fifty five percent of Asian American women experienced physical and sexual violence from their intimate partners winners and also that dot is the demographic that has the least likely to report rape or any kind of form of sexual violence. Mike Lesser them other races says and so just thinking about how like you know. It's like there are structural reasons that we experience the things that we experience but also those things all have very personal ramifications nations. And when I think about you using your voice in the background of like this what the system says supposed to happen I think that got it reverberates throughout much louder. Yeah absolutely yeah I think you know my mom is even stereotypes about Asian moms is.

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