Am just about to send in the letter below to editors/ journalists of the CA (California) Today section of the New York Times about how citizen journalists are covering the important Dana Rivers's trial because mainstream legacy media is unable/ unwilling to do so.
Dear Editors/Journalists of <CAtoday@nytimes.com>,
Don't know if you're aware that a small-in-number, but scrappy group of citizen journalists are covering the murder trial and subsequent insanity hearing of Dana Rivers, a prominent trans woman and early trans activist who received national press coverage approx. 20 years ago for being fired as a school teacher after transitioning.
Six years ago, Rivers, a M-t-F trans-identifying male, brutally murdered Charlotte Reed and Patricia Wright, a lesbian couple, and Benny Diambu Wright, their adopted son from Africa, in Oakland, CA; and, finally, on November 15, 2022, after a full six years wait, was finally tried and convicted of 3 counts of 1st degree murder and felony arson.
The trial proceedings are not completely over, however, as Rivers's insanity hearing* starts today, and should continue for at least the rest of this week.
So, why the need for a small, but scrappy band of citizen journalists to cover this case? Because, other than initial coverage immediately after the brutal murders and arrest of Rivers six years ago, and two recent articles in legacy media (one in "People" magazine, the other in The San Jose Mercury News), the mainstream media has almost completely ignored this story.
Why? Most likely because the mainstream legacy media, so thoroughly captured by gender identity ideology, is fearful of breaking free of the "trans women ARE women"/ "trans women are the most victimized people in the U.S." narrative...of giving prominence to a story that suggests that the concerns and behaviors of trans women who assert they ARE lesbian (as Dana Rivers did) and lesbians, adult human females...women such as Reed and Wright, two of Rivers's three victims who were same sex attracted, don't always neatly align.
And, so five citizen journalists, including Kara Dansky, a former ACLU lawyer and author of "The Abolition of Sex",** committed to covering the case and subsequent trial when mainstream legacy was unwilling/ unable to do its job.
Four of the journalists local to the Oakland/ SF-Bay Area also committed to ensuring that one of them was present during the trial every day, taking notes, and reporting those notes back to Ms. Dansky. One of them even hired a professional courtroom artist to illustrate the proceedings. Those notes and the artist's drawings can be found either on Kara Dansky's substack account or her website, which are both linked to below.***
Will a major mainstream legacy media outlet FINALLY fully cover the brutal murders of Reed, Wright, and Diambu, the subsequent trial and insanity hearing of Dana Rivers, and the corresponding societal concerns they raise (Is the LGBTQ+ movement trully intersectional? Where will Rivers serve out the prison term, whether or not convicted of insanity? Will Rivers, a male-bodied individual convicted of two femicides, ultimately share a cell with vulnerable female prisoners because of female/trans self-identification?****).
Or, will it continue to be up to committed citizen journalists to cover third rail stories that call into question gender identity ideology and its claims of radical intersectionalism?
*In a strange twist, Rivers's insanity hearing, which will determine the possibility of innocence by reason of insanity, came AFTER convictions for 3-1st degree murder and felony murder charges
****A side note: Kara Dansky, Lierre Keith of the Women's Liberation Front, and other people supporting women’s sex-based rights are protesting this morning at 10am (starting right now as I send this) at the courthouse where the Rivers's trial proceedings occur. Their signs will say "Dana Rivers is a man" and "NO men in women’s prisons. Trans activists groups have indicated that this protest will be met with a counter protest. Too bad that, once again, the mainstream legacy media will not be on hand to report on this event.
I would add the fact that Patricia Wright was a Black woman. In what universe is a white male brutally murdering a Black lesbian, her white wife and their Black son not considered a hate crime? This wasn’t a robbery gone wrong, he targeted them specifically. He was a TRA protester at Michfest, they were attendees who tried to #BeKind to him and this was how he responded.
The silence of mainstream and progressive media on this story is shameful.
Yeah...I went back and forth on whether to add that all of Rivers's victims were black and he is white. So much for LGBQT+s often lauded "intersectionalism". But the story is so explosive as it is...with just the trans-identifying man preying on lesbian women angle, I think the race angle needs to be covered fully in another separate letter.
Well, I believe one of the women were white, but I cant help but feel that part of it came from the fact that they were not just an ACTUAL lesbian couple, but an interracial one at that. Idk about the rest of you, but I've had experiences with insane racist white men harassing me for dating outside of my race when I've been in interracial relationships and way too many of these TIMs are """ex""" nazis.
I have to agree with this. In my experience, men are generally pretty shitty when it comes to lesbian couples in general.. but when it comes to interracial lesbian couples? Watch out. Good friends of mine have been harassed in a very liberal leaning city due to being in an interracial relationship.
I thought that they were an interracial couple, too, but in the courtroom it was revealed that both Charlotte Reed and Patricia Wright were black, despite the pale-ish-looking skin of the latter.
The only other coverage of the trial that I could find was an article from November 14th. It has a lot of interesting detail but mis-sexes the killer as expected, and lets about 1600 words go by before bothering to mention the fact that Rivers is a man ("had been born male", lol). His age at the time of the murders is mentioned almost as soon as his name, despite its being considerably less relevant to the crimes than his sex and trans identification.
Edited to add: by no stretch of the imagination is this source "the mainstream press".
Yeah, I was careful to use the words "mainstream legacy press". The Berkeley Scanner, despite the fact that she almost never attended the first portion of the court trial and used Rivers's preferred pronouns, did a good job in providing info from court proceedings and background info.
Bravo. Thanks for your letter and the update on the case.
It's so nice to see the revival of the "citizen journalist". I remember the boom that occurred online in the 1990s, when local news blogs popped up like mushrooms after a good rain.
But then again, necessity is the mother of invention... and we need unbeholden citizen journalists now more than ever.
Bravo!! Send to Michelle Goldman, her contact details are in her bylines for the NYTimes. she recently claimed the NYTimes was covering these issues and that she had covered them in the past for the New Yorker (she did cover it for New Yorker years ago, I read it). She needs this info.
Maybe Pamela Paul as well
Looked for Goldman's NYT email address: couldn't find it. Can you help?
I think it’s Goldberg not Goldman
Found a typo -- "trully" should be "truly."
Doh! Another friend just pointed out another error. Oh well... I never have been one to let the perfect become the enemy of the good.
It's a perfectly natural thing to have happen. This is why it's good to have others take a look -- fresh eyes catch things.