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Archive for Friday, October 5, 2007

Women, men rally against rape

Victims tell their stories at a Take Back the Night event at South Park

October 5, 2007

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Casey Pettit, left, a Kansas University senior from Topeka, and Nicole Tichenor, a KU junior from St. Louis, make their way along the Clothesline Project on Thursday at the Womyn Take Back the Night event at South Park. T-shirts decorated by survivors of rape or domestic violence or both were displayed publicly in the park and told their personal accounts with abuse.  "Theres is so much violence happening everyday on a very personal level," Tichenor said.

Casey Pettit, left, a Kansas University senior from Topeka, and Nicole Tichenor, a KU junior from St. Louis, make their way along the Clothesline Project on Thursday at the Womyn Take Back the Night event at South Park. T-shirts decorated by survivors of rape or domestic violence or both were displayed publicly in the park and told their personal accounts with abuse. "Theres is so much violence happening everyday on a very personal level," Tichenor said.

Take Back the Night

Rape survivor Robin Richards still fears the nighttime.

She warns women that the dark hours are when they are most vulnerable. It was 27 years ago, when she was 22 years old in a park with a boy she liked, when she was lulled into his friend's car and assaulted.

"It didn't ruin my life, but I still don't go out at night," she said.

Her strong will has carried her through life as she shares her message for women to be strong and speak up about domestic and sexual violence.

Her message was the essence of Thursday's Take Back the Night event, an annual international rally and march to promote awareness about domestic violence and sexual assault.

Richards, of Lawrence, spoke to about 70 people at South Park before they marched to Buford M. Watson Jr. Park for a candlelight vigil.

Through the years, Richards had learned that many of her friends have been raped and haven't reported it, she said.

According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, every two-and-a-half minutes someone in the United States is sexually assaulted.

"I don't think men realize the impact it has on women, or on men; it lasts forever," she said.

In recent years, Women's Transitional Care Services and GaDuGi Safe Center, who sponsor the event, have included men in the rally. This year, they wanted it to be even more inclusive for men and families.

"We wanted all genders and sexual orientations, anyone to feel welcome, because sexual assault and domestic violence knows no gender barriers," said Saida Bonifield, a WTCS outreach coordinator. "We also wanted men to participate and have an active role in this year's march."

WTCS, which has a women's shelter in Lawrence, recently began hiring men.

"I think it's very healthy to have a man in this field," said Jesse Jones, a male employee. "It sets an example. A lot of men think women's issues are only women's issues, but women's issues are men's issues as well."

The event included visual displays such as the Clothesline project, which gives voice to victims' messages about sexual and domestic abuse.

Comments

Sharon Roullins 7 years, 2 months ago

There is a "clothesline" of t-shirts in the Library and I found it to be a very powerful statement from these courageous women. I am so proud of them for sharing their stories and it is my sincerest prayer that they have received the support and love that they needed during this crisis in their lives. It also forces their assailants to face their cowardness; they may have thought they got away and won't have to deal with their crime ever again, but putting this in their face may have a lasting impact.

Cait McKnelly 7 years, 2 months ago

Why is it that the LJW doesn't mention these events until AFTER the fact. I would have loved to go to this but didn't even know it was happening!

bearded_gnome 7 years, 2 months ago

what about the male victims of domestic violence?????

male victims of sexual assault???????

oh, yeah, men baaaad, ferget the male victims.

Grundoon Luna 7 years, 2 months ago

That's an assinine comment, gnome. Sure there are male victims of domestic violence and they rarely report, especially if the perpatrator is a female and they risk being labelled a p*ssy for not fighting back. But those cases are rare and the exception and not the rule - by a HUGE margin - and males have a lot more resources available to them for escape than women do when they are victimized. @$$!

Ragingbear 7 years, 2 months ago

Azure, that is a horrendously misinformed statement. True, many crimes of assault and domestic violence against males goes unreported, but the rest of that garbage you spewed out was just you perpetuating what your preacher told you. It has been determined that up to 60% of all domestic violence and 40% of all sexual assaults are against men. Many go unreported. As for that crap you pulled out of your brain about such assaults being the exception and not the rule... That is only showing how misinformed and ignorant you actually are.

As for the rest, about how there are more options for men to "escape" such situations goes to show you that you don't have the slightest clue how such things work. It's not about sex, it's not about the individual incidents that happen over time, it's about control and taking power away from the victim. People in such situations feel trapped and powerless. Getting out of such situations is difficult as it not only requires you to get past the physical violence, but you also have to overcome the psychological warfare that is preventing you.

Many men have talked about "their psycho" ex girlfriend or boyfriend who stalks them, kidnaps their cat, makes constant phone calls and whatever. Cops and others tend to shrug this off if it is a woman, preventing a man from getting anything done about it. But if a man is the perpetrator, he will be promptly arrested and charged with stalking. I would suggest you actually go out and take a look at the information instead of just sitting at home watching Lifetime and moaning how horrid men are and how they should all be in prison from the moment they are born.

Grundoon Luna 7 years, 2 months ago

Raginbear, first you know nothing about me. I said nothing of the sort you attibute to me, haven't listen to what a "peacher" has said in a whole lot of years and I don't watch Lifetime, you hypocritical schmuck! And, what part of your arse did you pull those stats out of. You have no room to call anyone else ignorant, Clyde.

I know and have known of men who are being victimized by their spouses and the reasons they stay are different that women. They certainly have the resources to go: plenty of money, family support - what female victims don't have - but feel they have to stay. I sure hope it's not for the kids, but they are not at all being helped by the situation.

Haiku_Cuckoo 7 years, 2 months ago

what about the male victims of domestic violence?????

male victims of sexual assault???????

What about them? There's nothing stopping you and your battered brethren from holding a rally for male victims of domestic violence.

Bubbles 7 years, 2 months ago

gnome is talking about homos. The hidden crime of man on man abuse has gone unnoticed for far too long.

Ragingbear 7 years, 2 months ago

Men can, and have been sexually abused by women. Of course, Azure is too busy making stuff up and insulting people to acknowledge that. Probably the type of person that claims that men that are sexually assaulted by either sex were "asking for it".

towniejj 7 years, 2 months ago

I think it is sad how such an important issue has been turned into an argument about who is hurt more by sexual assualt and domestic violence, men or women. I don't think any, mildly-intelligent person could make a legitimate argument that men are victims of sexual assault and domestic violence at as high a rate as women. Of course there are lots of men (both children and adults) who are victims, but that issue is NOT minimized by the rally or the article. The true issue is that sexual assault and domestic violence hurts People...women, children, and men; and these groups are trying to bring attention to the issue and allow victims and survivors to have a forum. How is that a bad thing?

Frankly, the fact that you all feel the need to argue about how this issue hurts men and how men are unfairly ignored regarding the issue, is incredibly sad. If the rally focuses on women who have been raped and beaten, does that make it less important? Less of a reality? The reality is that many of your sisters, wives, mothers, and daughters have been abused and that fact alone should be enough to legitimize this event. What would be wrong with focusing on women and how violence impacts women? Don't you care about your mothers? daughters? sisters? I don't believe that men are harmed by events that draw attention to the impact of violence against women and children.

Violence and sexual assault are important issues in our society, and events that bring those issues to the forefront are needed and welcome. And if you have a better solution than those of WTCS and GaDuGi, then please, please start and organization and help...because I think the one thing we can all agree on is that more can be done.

Grundoon Luna 7 years, 2 months ago

Americorp, the reasons and repercusions I am sure are varied and I did not say that only women victims deserve sensitivity and respect.

Nothing I said indicates anything you all are trying to attribute to me.

Grundoon Luna 7 years, 2 months ago

Ragingbear says: Men can, and have been sexually abused by women. Of course, Azure is too busy making stuff up and insulting people to acknowledge that. Probably the type of person that claims that men that are sexually assaulted by either sex were "asking for it".

No, I leave the making stuff up to you, Rage. I never said they didn't get abused, only that they aren't abuse at the rate that women are and not even by a close margin - so acknoweledge I surely do. I certaily didn't make any implication that any man asked to be abused in any way, shape or form - you made that up.

kneejerkreaction 7 years, 2 months ago

Where's Sodomite? I'd hate to drive through there by accident.

Confrontation 7 years, 2 months ago

I think that a lot of people, especially men, seem to ignore the true trauma that comes from being sexually assaulted. Many believe that women and men who have been victims should just get over it and get on with their lives. For many victims, this attack(s) have a devastating impact on almost every part of their lives. This event is not a "useless rally." It's a time when victims, their families, and their supporters, can come together and share their stories with the hope that things will get better for them and future generations.

davidnta 7 years, 2 months ago

Domestic and sexual violence against anyone is wrong, but the labeling and bias that parkay does only shows that this person does not understand the issue at all. I can pull out my magic google search and find hundreds of domestic and sexual violence done by straight people to little children.

Now that's said, I don't think they should be label sodomites but instead sexual predator like everyone else.

kneejerkreaction 7 years, 2 months ago

davidnta, "sodomite" sounds worse than "sexual predator". This is one case where I would use the Muslim tactic and take the rapist outside the city gates and stone them to death.

kneejerkreaction 7 years, 2 months ago

Sodomite? Sodomist? Sodomizer? Sodom Hussein? Which is correct?

bolshavik_vw 7 years, 2 months ago

Domestic Violence is WRONG! No matter who the victim is or who the batterer is. It is wrong. And there are more places being opened up to help men out who are victims. Yes it is still a lot of pressure for men to tell. Although there needs to be more support for the men who do tell. And less guilt or shame put on them. I have worked, volunteered, been in shelters. Rallied to help stop this problem. I applaud those who can stand up and take action. And do not like to hear people bash us who want to end this problem. That is why I hope for Hillary Clinton in 2008, or Obama in 2008. Because as I was once a beaten women I would tell the person who was beating me. That someday we would have a Women or African American Presidente. And that changes would occur. Of course it made the person who beat me either more fearful. Or they would be in denial. Hopefully it happends so that the people who abuse others, or hate others. Get the message. That we are tired of bigotry and Abuse in this Country.

bolshavik_vw 7 years, 2 months ago

Another thing that should happen is that Those who commit Domestic Violence whether it be a Man, or Women. Should have to register on a National Website along with do more time in Jail then what they do now. Thank gosh for the laws that were passed during Bill Clinton Days. Victims Compensation Act 1996. Along with the clause that those who commit Domestic Violence should no longer be allowed to carry or purchase a Firearm.

Dorothy Hoyt-Reed 7 years, 2 months ago

Obviously again!!!! people who post on here did not read the story. Read it again slowly. Men are included.

"In recent years, Women's Transitional Care Services and GaDuGi Safe Center, who sponsor the event, have included men in the rally. This year, they wanted it to be even more inclusive for men and families.

"We wanted all genders and sexual orientations, anyone to feel welcome, because sexual assault and domestic violence knows no gender barriers," said Saida Bonifield, a WTCS outreach coordinator. "We also wanted men to participate and have an active role in this year's march."

WTCS, which has a women's shelter in Lawrence, recently began hiring men."

livingkate 7 years, 2 months ago

An "insufficiency complex" or "psycho ex-girlfriends" or "man-hating antagonism" is hardly what this march is about. Its about sexual abuse, women, men, children, whomever. Being raped by one of your friends' friends at a party or in a park or wherever is in NO WAY equitable to a girl calling nonstop after you break up. That is a weak, weak excuse to reduce this movement to something you can just blow off as insignificant. Grow up.

Charles L Bloss Jr 7 years, 2 months ago

I'm a retired male deputy sheriff from another county. During my job I have seen the effects of domestic violence on and by both sexes. Domestic violence calls are the most dangerous type of situation a law officer gets into. Assaults and batteries, however, do not always occur in domestic situations. What I have seen people do to each other is terrible, beyond belief. Like what happened to Robin, these things never go away completely. I ask Him for help when my own memories get too vivid. We can help each other, when we need it. I support any agency, public or private, that tries to stop the violence. Such as WTCS, and I applaud them for recognizing that men are victims too. I support law abiding citizens stepping in and helping when they see situations that require immediate action and to save a life. We should all work together to stop violence, to help each other. There are not enough law enforcement officers. Law enforcement agencies are understaffed. So until they get there, and even after if they ask, help each other. Thank you, Lynn

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