December seven, 2015
Not long ago the trial of Owen Labrie, a previous college student at St. Paul’s University in New Hampshire, came to a close when he was observed not guilty on counts of felony sexual assault but guilty of obtaining sexual intercourse with another person beneath the age of consent and making use of a pc to solicit a slight. The scenario began immediately after the accuser approved Labrie’s invitation to the “senior salute,” a tradition at the school in which graduating senior males compete to hook up with as many more youthful woman college students as attainable. In the girl’s account, she states that she did consent to some sexual conduct but claims that Labrie pressured her into further more sexual functions immediately after she said no.
The entire strategy of the senior salute, with more mature boys “scoring” (in their words and phrases) with more youthful women and making use of them as pawns in a game, would seem to advertise and normalize the strategy of sexual assault. As a substitute of an natural environment emphasizing regard, this apply implies that preying on women and observing them as sexual objects is someway great.
Gender and electrical power dynamics also arrive into participate in. The senior salute has apparently been a well-known tradition amongst the school’s male college students, and the woman in concern might have been pressured into collaborating. She has said that she turned down Labrie’s to start with give to fulfill up, but immediately after he presented yet again, a good friend inspired her to take into account it. She eventually said indeed since he was “one of the most well-known boys” and “It would be great.” In large school, there is generally strain to conform she said she “didn’t want to arrive off as an inexperienced tiny girl” and “didn’t want him [Labrie] to laugh at” her. Take into consideration how the social hierarchy at the school, the seniority and popularity of Labrie and the girl’s wish to suit in might have shaped how these functions unfolded.
Hopefully, this girl’s expertise will make colleges and modern society at significant continue on (or begin, in some conditions) to confront the difficulties of sexual assault, rape culture and gender politics, and educate college students on consent and regard.