Starting Somewhere

by Colin Murray | 11/25/03 6:00am

To the Editor:

Mr. Banjeree, with regards to your Nov. 24 letter: First of all, thank you for fulfilling part of the purpose of the signs -- to keep the dialogue about rape and other forms of sexual assault open. It is a very stigmatized and touchy subject but one that requires sensitivity and accurate information. The best way to change that is to keep publicizing the facts about sexual assault and the availability of resources for people wanting to get involved in sexual assault education and prevention.

Now, you're correct in that not everyone is directly involved in cases of sexual assault -- both reported and not reported on campus. However everyone, regardless of their sex, can play a part in preventing them every day. The fact that the vast majority of rapes are perpetrated by men should not make anyone hate all men. It should make men pause, and think about what they can change in their life so that neither they nor any man around them commits an assault and contributes to the statistics students have seen on posters around campus. I feel like it should also make women think of ways to avoid being caught in a potentially harmful situation (such as not having the "20 beers" you speak of).

As far as your analogy about sympathizing with someone in an accident, I would hope Mr. Banjeree would be just as compassionate in both situations and be more critical of the negligent, dangerous driver than the person they mowed down (who should be supported and cared for, not blamed).

So thanks again for helping the signs achieve part of their goal, Mr. Banjeree. Perhaps eventually this dialogue will make Dartmouth a place where there are fewer sexual assaults and rapes. But it must start somewhere, even if that is with an anonymous poster from concerned students.

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