Sunday, June 28, 2009

Why Men Should Care About Sexual Assault

A Message To Men: The Reason You Should Care About Having A Sexual Assault Policy?

We are all influenced by sexual assault. Odds are that someone near to you has been sexually abused or sexually assaulted. This blog provides some information about how sexual violence affects men, in addition, offering ways on how to dwindle a man's likelihood to mar someone else and it also lists a range of organizations that men can get involved with to enlighten others about sexual assault preventions.

So why should men care about sexual assault, much less to care about a policy? MMMM???? Because men also receive benefits from having one! We must remember…..

1. Men can rape. The vast majority of all sexual violent crimes are perpetrated by males. Even when men are the victims, men are usually the perpetrators of such crimes.
2. Men are raped. Even though our society doesn’t like to acknowledge it, and we ourselves don't like to talk about it, the fact remains that men can also be victims of sexual violence. Studies show that a staggering 10-20% of all males are sexually assaulted at some point in their lives. It is baffling why people think that men are immune to the seemingly uncontrollable epidemic of sexual violence. Sadly enough, male survivors are habitually disbelieved, accused of being gay, or blamed for their own victimization when they report an incident of sexual assault. Some victims even begin to believe that they are gay themselves because of possible erection from a rape. Men frequently respond like many female survivors, by remaining silent and suffering alone. This may lead to severe depression or even suicide.
3. Men's loved ones, family members, friends are raped. At some point in every man's life, someone close to him will likely divulge that they were a survivor of sexual violence. Mens’ sensitivity, compassion and understanding is severely needed at this point in time. Victims need a male figure that they can run to in their time of need. It is important to have a male that you can trust, it will help with the healing process. Ignorance about rape can hinder the healing process while supportive male presence during a survivor's recovery can be invaluable.
4. Rape restricts men. It is unfeasible to differentiate men who you can trust from who you cannot. As a result of this dilemma, relationships become guarded and are sometimes approached with fear and mistrust. Some women are sexually assaulted by strangers, however, most survivors have been assaulted by someone they know, trust or even love. If there is someone in your life that has been a victim of any sexual misconduct they will have an extremely hard time trusting any man, which in turn will make living among this individual very difficult due to another man’s violence. More subtle things can affect a woman's ability to trust men as well, such as the fear of being raped, images of violence against women in the media and news stories about sexual assault. When 80% of those who are raped know the man who attacked them, it becomes virtually impossible to distinguish men who can be trusted from men who cannot. The result is a society that has to constantly have an iron wall up. This means relationships with men are approached with fear and mistrust, where intimacy is limited by the relentless menace of violence, and where all men are labeled as impending rapists.
5. Men can stop rape. Rape is an option some men make to use sex as a weapon of power and control. All men can engage in a vital role by challenging rape-supporting attitudes and behaviors in the men around them by raising awareness about the damaging impact of sexual violence. Whenever a man's voice teams up with those of women in speaking out against any injustice the results prove to be promising. So why not join to end the violations many suffers from being a victim of a sexual crime.
How can men be involved in fighting against Sexual Assault?

If you are emotionally, psychologically, physically, or sexually abusive to women, or have been in the past, seek professional help NOW. You can call Psychological Services and speak with a therapist and get help.

Approach sexual assault as a Men's issue. Try to see yourself not only as a possible offender but also as an empowered bystander who can talk to his peers and change attitudes of men of all ages and socioeconomic, racial and ethnic backgrounds.

Speak Up! If a brother, friend, classmate or teammate is being disrespectful to a partner or date by using derogatory or degrading names, call him out on his behavior. Don't just look the other way and don’t remain silent.

Be audacious. Look at your own attitudes. Think about how your actions may inadvertently hurt someone or perpetuate sexism. Work to change those attitudes and actions. Don't have sex with anyone unless they say yes or give you an overt signal. When in doubt … ask.

Help survivors. If a friend has been the victim of sexual assault, including acquaintance rape, listen without judgment. Gently ask what you can do to help.

Think critically about advertisements, articles, movies etc. Don't support products and places that perpetuate sexism or the sexual exploitation of children or adults.

Understand cultural differences. Don't stereotype people. Ask what you can do or if there is anyone else that you could help the survivor contact.

Mentor and teach young boys about how to be men in ways that don't involve degrading or abusing girls and women. Volunteer to work with gender violence prevention programs, including anti-sexist men's programs. Lead by example.

Be an ally to women who are working to end all forms of gender violence. Support the work of campus-based women's centers. Attend "Take Back the Night" rallies and other public events. Raise money for community-based rape crisis centers and battered women's shelters. If you belong to a team, fraternity or another student group, organize a fundraiser.

Recognize and speak out against homophobia and gay-bashing. Discrimination and violence against lesbians and gays are wrong in and of themselves. This abuse also has direct links to sexism. For example, the sexual orientation of men who speak out against sexism is often questioned, a conscious or unconscious strategy intended to silence them. This is a key reason why so few men speak out.

Learn as much as you can. Listen to survivors' stories. Attend programs, take courses, watch films, and read articles and books about multicultural masculinities, gender inequality, and the root causes of gender violence. Educate yourself and others about how larger social forces affect the conflicts between individual men and women.

Don't fund sexism. Refuse to purchase any magazine, rent any video, subscribe to any web site, or buy any music that portrays girls or women in a sexually degrading or abusive manner. Protest sexism in the media.

*****Please note that these suggestions are from other prevention policies that you may also have access to on the web*******

The Message

Men need to be sentient of languages that they use. Words are very powerful. We live in a society in which words are often used to put women down, where calling a girl or woman a "bitch," "freak," or "whore" is common. Such language sends messages that females are less than human. When men see women as inferior, it becomes easier to treat them with less respect, disregard their rights, and ignore their well-being. Sexual violence often goes hand in hand with poor communication. Distress with talking candidly and explicitly about sex radically hoist the danger of hurting someone. By learning efficient sexual communication, establishing consent, stating your desires clearly, listening to your partner, and asking when the situation is unclear; men would then make sex safer for themselves and others.

Here are some links that provides information of different programs for men.

Become involved! Email us at We currently have an immediate need for:

* A skilled technician with software to make jpeg files to post letters of support on the tracker
* A graphic arts designer to help our website designer
* Skilled media savvy persons to chronicle CUNY's progress for the students on campus blogs, radio and television.
* Organizations and individuals to endorse our cause (willing to sign a letter of support)
* Organizations and individuals to join Students for a Greater CUNY as a member

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Summer Sizzlers...

Dear Supporters,

Can you believe it, it's almost a year that the struggle for a prevention focused sexual assault policy for CUNY has been happening?!!!!!

While we have made great progress, we have a lot more to go.

SGC is vamping up to unleash its cross-campus awareness campaign, which will take place throughout the summer. We'll keep you posted.

In the meantime, if you would like us to present to your group, class, colleagues, etc, we would be happy to oblige. We can also train YOU to be more pro-active in spreading awareness too!


We can be reached at

Let's continue to work in lock-step to create awareness!

Lastly but certainly not least, we are working with other campuses to hold 2 additional town hall meetings. As we move further along in our plans, we will keep you abreast of our steps and opportunities to volunteer.

To building a Greater CUNY!

Elischia Fludd

Become involved! Email us at We currently have an immediate need for:

* A skilled technician with software to make jpeg files to post letters of support on the tracker
* A graphic arts designer to help our website designer
* Skilled media savvy persons to chronicle CUNY's progress for the students on campus blogs, radio and television.
* Organizations and individuals to endorse our cause (willing to sign a letter of support)
* Organizations and individuals to join Students for a Greater CUNY as a member