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Rev. Debra Haffner Headshot

What if You Gave a Revolution and CNN Didn't Come?

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You probably didn't hear about it. I thought perhaps I had just missed the television and press coverage, but when I Googled it, I didn't find any key national news stories. Entertainment press covered the benefit, local press covered the event, but such sources as the New York Times, CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and so on, just not there.

How is that possible? This weekend, more than 30,000 women gathered in New Orleans to transform the Superdome into what creator Eve Ensler named "SuperLove." Coordinated by V-Day, this extraordinary event brought women from around the country to the Super Dome to reclaim its space for women and to offer healing services to the women of the Gulf South. The weekend was a nonstop program of speeches, poetry, music, celebration of women, and a call to end the violence -- intimate partner violence, rape, harassment and torture of women. It ended with a celebrity studded performance of The Vagina Monologues where almost every seat in the New Orleans Arena was taken, and words for female genitals in red and pink neon lights surrounded us instead of basketball scores.

The stories stay with me. Stories of rape and abandonment in New Orleans. Jane Fonda said, "Katrina was not a natural disaster. It was a man-made disaster." Stories of rape and survival in the Balkans. Stories of rape and repair in the DRC. Stories of women coming together in every state and countries from the Philippines to Kenya to Guatemala to produce the Vagina Monologues against tremendous resistance to women's claming the power of their bodies. Oh, the stories -- of brutalization and of survival.

Every major newspaper, every major television show, every major radio show, every mainstream blog, including this one, should have been there and should have been talking, covering, about why violence against women must be televised. V-Day New Orleans was the perfect news hook, but no one came. And yet Britney Spear's car accident was covered incessantly. There is something fundamentally wrong with what's considered media worthy when it comes to women.

Thirty five years ago, Gil Scott Heron wrote, The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. Thirty five years later, it still isn't. Not enough. But let there be no doubt that it is happening. You only had to be in Superdome this weekend to feel it.

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