Help prevent domestic violence, abuse in society

Emily Burney

Every nine seconds a woman is assaulted or beaten in the U.S.

One in three women have been victims of some form of physical violence by an intimate partner at some point in their lifetime, according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

While those of all gender identities could experience abuse, men commit the majority of intimate partner abuse and sexual violence against women, according to the World Health Organization.

Globally, 35 percent of women have experienced either physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence or non-partner sexual violence.

This is perpetuated in part by unhealthy ideas of masculinity and what it means to “be a man,” with society teaching men and boys vilification of anything it considers “weak” and the ostracizing of those who do not conform. With this mindset, disrespect and repression become the norm, leading to violence as an easy answer.

And with women between the ages of 18-24 at the highest risk for violence, this stance is key on college campuses when it comes to preventing abuse and assault.

However, men who choose to stand in solidarity with survivors and against violence can bring an end to this epidemic.

The White Ribbon Campaign enables men to take that stance by pledging to never “commit, condone, or remain silent about violence against women or girls.” Started in 1991, the White Ribbon Campaign is an international movement of men and boys working to end violence against women and girls, promote gender equity, healthy relationships and a new vision of masculinity. This movement is now coming to the Oregon State University campus.

The Associated Students of Oregon State University Women’s Affairs Task Force is putting on a White Ribbon Campaign Week, from Feb. 15-19, as a week of raising awareness and promoting activism for the prevention of violence against women.

This is the first time that the campaign will make its presence known at OSU.

Throughout the week the campaign plans to provide exciting opportunities for members of the Oregon State community to get involved with efforts to address this issue and bring an end to violence against women.

Tabling will be held in the Memorial Union Quad from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday of the week, enabling students to learn more about the campaign and take the White Ribbon Pledge.

Resources and organizations both on and off campus with opportunities for young men to get involved in will also be present. Then on Thursday, Feb. 18, speaker Logan Denney will present his workshop “The Fury: Discussing Unhealthy Masculinities and the Importance of a Masculine Heart and Mind,” in the MU Horizon Room at 6 p.m.

All members of the OSU community are welcome and highly encouraged to come to any and all of these events to learn more about their role in ending violence against women.

White Ribbon Pins will also be available throughout the week at any Cultural Resource Center and at our table in the quad.

Emily Burney is a member of the Women’s Affairs Task Force at ASOSU and a guest columnist for The Daily Barometer

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