1. Gender and justice in Bangladesh.
Kristy Crabtree comes across countless news items in her career as a journalist — but she just couldn’t let go of this story.
"Hena was 14 years old when she was whipped to death in a town outside Bangladesh’s capital city, Dhaka," writes Crabtree. "Her crime: being raped by her 40 year-old cousin."
Hena’s extra-judicial punishment was already illegal under a High Court ruling passed more than five months before her death. Yet, despite this legal protection, it remains extremely difficult for female survivors of violent crimes to achieve justice through the unofficial system of village arbitration. Hena’s case is just one particularly tragic example.
Crabtree has lived and worked in Bangladesh, established relationships with community organizers, and speaks fluent Bengali. Her new Kickstarter project will fund a major research project on women and the justice system in Bangladesh, focusing on the dynamics of small, rural communities. Backers can help bring this underreported story into the world, while receiving photos, letters, and dispatches from Crabtree in the field.

    Gender and justice in Bangladesh.

    Kristy Crabtree comes across countless news items in her career as a journalist — but she just couldn’t let go of this story.

    "Hena was 14 years old when she was whipped to death in a town outside Bangladesh’s capital city, Dhaka," writes Crabtree. "Her crime: being raped by her 40 year-old cousin."

    Hena’s extra-judicial punishment was already illegal under a High Court ruling passed more than five months before her death. Yet, despite this legal protection, it remains extremely difficult for female survivors of violent crimes to achieve justice through the unofficial system of village arbitration. Hena’s case is just one particularly tragic example.

    Crabtree has lived and worked in Bangladesh, established relationships with community organizers, and speaks fluent Bengali. Her new Kickstarter project will fund a major research project on women and the justice system in Bangladesh, focusing on the dynamics of small, rural communities. Backers can help bring this underreported story into the world, while receiving photos, letters, and dispatches from Crabtree in the field.

    View on Kickstarter
  2. A grower’s life goes to pot.
It’s been a big week for weed. Last week, Colorado and Washington voted to legalize marijuana, while Massachusetts voters approved medical cannabis. The passage of these ballot initiatives marks the latest in a string of victories for drug-policy reform on the state level.
However, despite major shifts in both public opinion and state law, the federal government continues to prosecute marijuana growers as felons. As the gap between federal and state drug laws widens, pot growers are increasingly vulnerable. In the case of a Montana grower named Chris Williams, that legal contradiction could put him in prison for the rest of his life.
Code of the West is a documentary about Williams, a single father and marijuana farmer whose facility conformed to Montana state law. After a federal raid shut down his operation, Williams now finds himself facing 80 years in prison.
Filmmaker and journalist Rebecca Richman Cohen just updated her Kickstarter backers with an Op-Doc video from the New York Times, detailing the story behind her film and introducing viewers to Williams. Since posting the video last week, her work has been retweeted by politicians, rockers, and a porn star — drawing some valuable attention to her Kickstarter project. There are still 22 days left to help fund Cohen’s work and spread the story of a Montana farmer and his ultimate fate.

    A grower’s life goes to pot.

    It’s been a big week for weed. Last week, Colorado and Washington voted to legalize marijuana, while Massachusetts voters approved medical cannabis. The passage of these ballot initiatives marks the latest in a string of victories for drug-policy reform on the state level.

    However, despite major shifts in both public opinion and state law, the federal government continues to prosecute marijuana growers as felons. As the gap between federal and state drug laws widens, pot growers are increasingly vulnerable. In the case of a Montana grower named Chris Williams, that legal contradiction could put him in prison for the rest of his life.

    Code of the West is a documentary about Williams, a single father and marijuana farmer whose facility conformed to Montana state law. After a federal raid shut down his operation, Williams now finds himself facing 80 years in prison.

    Filmmaker and journalist Rebecca Richman Cohen just updated her Kickstarter backers with an Op-Doc video from the New York Times, detailing the story behind her film and introducing viewers to Williams. Since posting the video last week, her work has been retweeted by politicians, rockers, and a porn star — drawing some valuable attention to her Kickstarter project. There are still 22 days left to help fund Cohen’s work and spread the story of a Montana farmer and his ultimate fate.