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Leslie Lindsay: Thanks again for being with us today—it was quite illuminating! From Notes on a Silencing. Our fealty was total. The rector didn't have much to offer. In American terms, I was a junior. My father was a regular reader of the lessons and served on the vestry. Not then and not ever. This was not the game I'd thought it was, a civilized dance of virtue and discretion. Is it possible to face the fall semester of senior year without losing your mind? Only a fool walked into what I had walked into. I'd fought the dissolution of the lawns and classes and people I knew into a faceless institution, monolithic and cruel. Now my mother was looking at me imploringly. They also concluded that they would not abide by state law and report the incident to the police. They let the boys graduate. How do we create a person’s profile? Matthews went on. But nobody started that conversation, so we never did. The damage to me was done. As a 15-year-old girl, she was sexually assaulted. "Try again," she instructed. That a child is assaulted on that campus, and the school covers it up.". Lacy Crawford's new memoir, "Notes on a Silencing," details her abuse at St. Paul's boarding school in New Hampshire. I could not get past Prozac. His body seemed to pause in its animation, and he wore a look I had never seen before. He did not ask me if anything had entered or wounded my throat. Thus is the world, this world, made. He was the rook behind the queen. But she was viciously assaulted by two senior students, and then, she writes, her family learned hard truths about the citadels of privilege. They talked to the school psychologist, the school's lawyer, and the physician in the infirmary. The impact of this violation only sharpened with time. The school's characterization of me as a drug dealer was the boldest lie I had ever encountered. He looked over her shoulder at me and shook his head. But then the school went and did the same thing, denying my humanity, rewriting the character of a girl. I'd been so careful and so worried. Crawford entered the prestigious St. Paul’s School when she was 14. He talked about God and the church without irony or ambivalence. They just stood there, opaque, like a WASP update of that exhausted hardscrabble couple in American Gothic—graph paper instead of pitchfork clutched in Dad's hand. jQuery.extend(Drupal.settings, {"basePath":"\/","pathPrefix":"","ajaxPageState":{"theme":"paw","theme_token":"fJgHTdC6QySALkGzqHB2fpcn0skTQAMDnuQQeyvhezI","js":{"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/jquery_update\/replace\/jquery\/1.11\/jquery.min.js":1,"misc\/jquery-extend-3.4.0.js":1,"misc\/jquery-html-prefilter-3.5.0-backport.js":1,"misc\/jquery.once.js":1,"0":1,"https:\/\/www.googletagservices.com\/tag\/js\/gpt.js":1,"misc\/drupal.js":1,"1":1,"2":1,"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/admin_menu\/admin_devel\/admin_devel.js":1,"3":1,"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/google_analytics\/googleanalytics.js":1,"4":1,"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/field_group\/field_group.js":1,"5":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/js\/plugins.js":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/js\/headroom.js":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/js\/jquery.headroom.js":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/js\/jquery.flexslider-min.js":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/js\/tweetie\/tweetie.js":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/js\/script.js":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/js\/modernizr-2.8.3.min.js":1},"css":{"modules\/system\/system.base.css":1,"modules\/system\/system.menus.css":1,"modules\/system\/system.messages.css":1,"modules\/system\/system.theme.css":1,"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/date\/date_api\/date.css":1,"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/date\/date_popup\/themes\/datepicker.1.7.css":1,"modules\/field\/theme\/field.css":1,"modules\/node\/node.css":1,"modules\/search\/search.css":1,"modules\/user\/user.css":1,"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/youtube\/css\/youtube.css":1,"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/views\/css\/views.css":1,"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/ckeditor\/css\/ckeditor.css":1,"sites\/all\/modules\/contrib\/ctools\/css\/ctools.css":1,"https:\/\/fonts.googleapis.com\/css?family=Archivo+Narrow:400,700|Open+Sans:400,600italic,600,400italic,800":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/css\/compiled\/normalize.css":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/css\/compiled\/import.css":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/css\/compiled\/style.css":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/css\/compiled\/tabs.css":1,"sites\/all\/themes\/paw\/css\/compiled\/ie8.css":1}},"better_exposed_filters":{"views":{"inbox":{"displays":{"responses":{"filters":[]},"block_2":{"filters":[]}}},"exclusive_articles":{"displays":{"block":{"filters":[]}}}}},"googleanalytics":{"trackOutbound":1,"trackMailto":1,"trackDownload":1,"trackDownloadExtensions":"7z|aac|arc|arj|asf|asx|avi|bin|csv|doc(x|m)?|dot(x|m)?|exe|flv|gif|gz|gzip|hqx|jar|jpe?g|js|mp(2|3|4|e?g)|mov(ie)?|msi|msp|pdf|phps|png|ppt(x|m)?|pot(x|m)?|pps(x|m)?|ppam|sld(x|m)?|thmx|qtm?|ra(m|r)?|sea|sit|tar|tgz|torrent|txt|wav|wma|wmv|wpd|xls(x|m|b)?|xlt(x|m)|xlam|xml|z|zip","trackDomainMode":"1","trackCrossDomains":["www.paw.princeton.edu, old-paw.princeton.edu, www.old-paw.princeton.edu"]},"urlIsAjaxTrusted":{"\/article\/reading-room-lacy-crawford-%E2%80%9996":true},"field_group":{"div":"default"}}); I'd spit in the sink and then open my mouth again, wider, and peer down my nose until my eyeballs ached because there had to be something there. It would be more than 25 years before I learned what he'd written that cold afternoon. Then you could say whatever you wanted. "The lawyer for the school says that you are not welcome to return to campus. Anne, who is 27 and educated at Princeton and the University of Chicago, appears stoic and calm to her clients, yet flails about in her personal life. To which I'd reply: You'd be surprised what a kid can find it unimaginable to say. Another parent did summon Crawford to the house to review an essay the father had rewritten. The rasp terrified me. That feeling was not limited to my throat. If she could wave a magic wand to transform college admissions, she’d have colleges revert to their own, unique applications and essays, and require interviews. "Okay, you can close. I did not want to give up one thing more. It seemed to me that all I had ever done was try to give them what they wanted. I imagine I could have convinced a court I had never sold drugs. Mom and Dad called the school, worried and deeply upset, and assumed that the people they spoke to would share their concern: two boys on campus had assaulted their girl.” – Lacy Crawford. He did not tell me and he did not tell my parents and he did not tell my doctors. The daughter of socially ambitious upper-middle-class parents who believed in “the value of education,” she immediately felt out of place among her privileged, preternaturally sophisticated classmates. But my children are very small and I’m their primary caregiver, so I will see what bears out. When the boys did what they did to me, they denied the third person on that bed. The rector during my time there, Kelly Clark, had previously been head of the Berkeley Divinity School at Yale. Sitting small, I said, "What's up? What could be done to address this? All of that. I have files a few inches thick, each off-center page reproduced from the scanned originals, that record my passage from place to place, each time opening my mouth in the hope that someone would see. We collect and match historical records that Ancestry users have contributed to their family trees to create each person’s profile. I dragged my mind from the thought of being a Prozac dealer to the far less interesting accusation of teenage sex. Dad continued. That had felt to me too easy, too binary—what you would say if you'd never been a student there. These are the parents who have sought to enroll their child in the best preschool when they first find out that they are pregnant. He did not take swabs to culture. Then the blood ran free. She came at me with the tongue depressor. Follow-up as needed. Maybe, multiple physicians told me years later, it was just that the sores were so deep. In the boys' room, I had been unwilling to get caught and give up my perfect record and all I had achieved at school. "Basically," my father said, his voice rasping, "they're promising to destroy you." Parents only want the best for their children, and students are fighting for college seats that will give them a head start into work and adulthood. When Lacy Crawford was 14, her parents sent her to St. Paul’s, hoping for the best education money could buy. In 2017, during the New Hampshire state investigation into St. Paul's, I got hold of my records from the ear-nose-and-throat clinic in Concord. Mom and Dad called the school, worried and deeply upset, and assumed that the people they spoke to would share their concern: two boys on campus had assaulted their girl. He's been waiting ten years to go after St. Paul's.

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