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Delivering News From The Source

Rape Culture ia a real thing

Asmita KC promoting the "It's On Us" campaign. Photo by Nathan

Asmita KC promoting the “It’s On Us” campaign. Photo by Nathaniel Taylor

By Nathaniel Taylor

The Rape Culture presentation, set up by Waldorf Amnesty Club, was an eye-opening experience for many people in the audience. There were about 30 people in attendance, and most of them came away with a new view of our culture, and a new understanding of how seemingly little things can affect us, disassociating us from what is important.

The presentation began with Heather Yoeman showing a slideshow and talking about some of the many things that affect us that we find normal in society today.

“Some of you may leave this presentation depressed, while some of you will leave empowered. I hope that most of you leave empowered,” Yoeman said.

Some of the things she touched on were video games, music and advertisements. One clothing magazine published an ad this year titled, “Spike your best friend’s egg nog when they’re not looking.” Some responses on social media included posts like, “That Bloomingdales ad is horrific. How was that ever approved yet alone thought of as a good idea?! Despicable.” The public outrage has forced Bloomingdales to issue public apologies.

After Yoeman’s presentation, she gave her own, more personal version. She talked less about rape culture, and more about rape and consent. She talked about her childhood, the uncomfortable experiences she had with her father, how it lead to her being raped in college, and why she didn’t tell anyone. Her main focus was about the victims “voice.” Yoeman talked about trying to stand up to her father in front of her mother, and neither of them cared. She said it took away her voice, and she felt like no one cared when she was raped. Confiding in her roommate about some of the things that had happened gave her the ability to start getting her voice back. She ended her part of the presentation by showing a video about consent on YouTube called “Consent is like Tea.” The video basically said if you wouldn’t give them tea in the position they are in, don’t have sex with them. If they are sleeping or say no, would you give them tea? No, so don’t have sex with them because that is rape.

The last presentation included Waldorf’s Crises Intervention Workers (whose office is down the hall from the Career Center) told the students if they know someone who is affected, they could help. The workers will help with emotional and legal issues if that’s what the student wants, and the service is free and confidential.

They also brought up the question, “What percentage of rape cases do you think are falsely reported?” One of the students, who wanted to stay anonymous, said, 50 percent. They said most policeofficers thought it was closer to 60 to 70 percent. According to statistics, under 2 percent of reported rape cases are false because of how intimate the crime is. They also said stranger danger is misleading because over 90 percent of rape comes from people the victims know.

Overall, the presentation was very eye opening to the audience, and much of the audience found it a really good experience. After the presentation, some of the students signed the “It’s On Us” petition, which Waldorf Amnesty Club had promoted the week before. Waldorf Amnesty Faculty member Dr. Suzanne Falck-Yi concluded the presentation with a thank you to the speakers and audience.