On Friday, University of California Feminist Studies Associate Professor Mireille Miller-Young pled not guilty to misdemeanor theft, battery, and vandalism. To bring those who missed the two previous related posts up to speed: A video at the YouTube site of the Survivors of the Abortion Holocaust (warning: profanity) shows Miller-Young taking a sign away from a participant in a campus pro-life outreach effort. Accompanied by two students, she took the sign back to her office and destroyed it.
Her attorney entered the not guilty plea on Miller-Young’s behalf despite documented admissions to police that, in her words, “I’m stronger so I was able to take the poster,” and that she, in the police report’s words, “was ‘mainly’ responsible for the poster’s destruction because she was the only one with scissors.” Various searches on Ms. Miller-Young’s full name indicate that only three local outlets, the Santa Barbara Independent and two others, filed stories on her plea. No one, as far as I can tell, has noted that Miller-Young continues to carry on without sanction as a $125,000-per-year researcher of “black cultural studies” and “pornography and sex work,” and that her tweets betray no remorse for her destructive actions.
As to the former, this past weekend Miller-Young was a panelist at the University of Toronto’s Feminist Porn Conference. The event “brings together academics, students, cultural critics, sex workers, activists, fans, performers, directors, and producers to explore the intersections between feminism and pornography as well as feminist porn as a genre, industry, and movement.”
Miller-Young participated remotely, and received high praise in a tweet as “So brilliant, brave, irrepressible.”
The four-person panel’s topic:
Running Race: Sexual Consumption, Labor, and Expressions by Women of Color
This panel explores women of color’s engagements with pornography and various forms of sex work. Ranging from performance to fandom to sex industry labor issues and identity politics, this panel examines how race, gender, class, and sexuality intertwine to shape the unique experiences of women of color in commercial sexual culture. In light of the potential for feminist and queer porn to open up new opportunities for women of color in the industry, the panelists will discuss the significance of women of color feminist and queer politics to their sexual consumption, labor, and expressions in porn and beyond.
As I have previously noted, UCSB “clearly either charges far too much in tuition, gets far too much money from the state, or both.”
When an more serious act of vandalism — but without assault — occurred at Northern Kentucky University in 2006, Sally Jacobsen, the NKU prof involved, was suspended and barred from the classroom, forced to compensate the pro-life group involved for the costs of her destruction, and “retired and moved to Portland, Oregon.” She appears not to have served any time in jail, and in my view got off far too easy.
Thus far, UCSB’s Miller-Young, facing more serious charges, is undeservedly getting far more lenient treatment. The more the press ignores the story, the more likely it is that she’ll suffer no meaningful sanctions. Excuse me for believing that they would consider that an eminently desirable outcome.
Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.