Campus Sexual Assault

By Jess Taggart


Pitch – Sexual Assault on University and College Campuses Transcript

With all the allegations happening in Hollywood concerning the biggest and most influential men and women, more and more people are feeling comfortable coming forward to report sexual assaults and harassment, although there is a demographic that is overlooked and not really given a second thought.

University and college students are wildly underrepresented. Campus assaults are a huge problem in the United States and Canada, as they occur more often in this part of the world than anywhere else. In Margaret Wente’s The Globe and Mail piece, she mentions how campus assaults have become an epidemic in North America at basically every post-secondary institution. Wente also states that rape and assault are underreported. This has to do with the circumstances of the situation, which can be anything from the victim drinking underage and doesn’t want to get in trouble to victim blaming to the victims getting coerced into silence by authority figures or the perpetrators themselves.

Just because campus assaults are underreported doesn’t mean they don’t happen. I hear about my friends getting taken advantage of at least once a week in my residence of 250 people and it happens even more just a little bit off campus, in the village, at the frats. My friends and I have a lot to say on the matter and we’re just getting started.  

Atwood, Margaret. "Am I a bad feminist?" The Globe and Mail, 13 Jan. 2018

The article that Margaret Atwood published to The Globe and Mail a week ago where she shares her stance on the #MeToo and Times Up! campaigns as well as other lesser-known campaigns that deal with the same subject matter. She explains why she believes that campaigns of this nature have essentially turned into witch hunts and makes many other extremely bold comparisons. She also uses this article to defend her male friend who has been called out and her stance on the open letter directed at the University of British Columbia, a petition that she had signed back in fall 2016. 

Nolan, Megan. "The Problem with the #MeToo Campaign." Vice, 17 Oct. 2017

Megan Nolan published a piece to Vice where she talks about how the #MeToo campaign has become more of a negative than a positive, like when it was first created. She mentions how the original creator of #MeToo has been overlooked as it was popularized by others more recently. She details how it has become harmful towards the individuals being accused. She explains that she views the hashtag as a trend of sorts and way to easily demonize others without too much backlash. 

Edsall, Thomas. "Can Democrats Follow #MeToo to Victory?" The New York Times, 18 Jan. 2018

In this opinion piece, Thomas Edsall explains how the Democrats can use the #MeToo campaign for upcoming elections. The coverage of this issue within the Democratic party has put them at an advantage with votes against the Republicans, as the Democrats handle the matter much differently than their opponents. When it comes to voting, there is a stark difference in men to women, more men vote than women, especially in the last election and depending on the part of the issue at hand. Edsall also mentions how it looks like that there are more women getting involved in political parties. The campaign is also a hot topic among many people as it is the sixth most popular hot-button issue. 

Kipnis, Laura. "Has #MeToo gone too far, or not far enough? The answer is both" The Guardian, 16 Jan. 2018

In this article, Laura Kipnis discusses how she keeps getting asked whether or not #MeToo has gone too far. Her answer is a quite confusing one, as she says that the campaign is both. Kipnis mentions how because she has written a book on this subject matter previously, that readers and friends would assume that she would be interested in this. She also discusses what constitutes as going too far or overstepping boundaries and how it varies from time to place, even to person.   

Wente, Margaret. "Rape on campus - is it an epidemic?" The Globe and Mail, 12 Sept. 2013

In this article by Margaret Wente, she explains how assaults and rapes on university and college campuses have become a huge problem that needs immediate addressing. Wente interviews students at universities in Canada and the United States to get their take on the problem.  The some of the answers that she received are worrying and uncomfortable. The problem clearly lies within the environment in which the problemed ones are thriving in, like fraternities and other groups, that encourage this dangerous behavior. 

"Campus Sexual Violence: Statistics", n.d.

These stats are for the United States campus assaults and the like, which make up for much of campus sexual violence in North America. 

Kingston, Anne "The real danger for women on campus", MacLean's, 27 Nov. 2013 

This article by Anne Kingston talks about how campuses have essentially become "hunting grounds for sexual predators" and what could possibly lead to these. Kingston talks about the different campaigns that were created to help bring awareness to the issue at hand and help victims get the help they require. She also explains how a lot of the focus remains on the victim and the circumstances of the situation he/she was in. Kingston mentions some important statistics that really put this issue into perspective. 

"Sexual Assault Statistics in Canada", n.d.

These statistics are for Canada and covers all different types of assaults that occur in Canada. 

Heather M. Karjane, Bonnie S. Fisher, and Francis T. Cullen "Sexual Assault on Campus:  What Colleges and Universities Are Doing About It", Dec. 2005

This report by Heather M. Karjane, Bonnie S. Fisher, and Francis T. Cullen explains how people who attend university and college are actually more at risk for sexual assault than those who are not. It also explains how sexual assault is the most underreported crime in the United States and possible reasons why the victims do not report the perpetrators. The studies in the report reveal that there is hardly any attention paid to these crimes and that the laws and rules put in place by and/or for the universities and colleges are very weak and are hardly enforced by anyone.

Gunraj, Andrea "Sexual assault policies on campus: a discussion paper", 30 Oct. 2014

This paper talks about the growing concern about campus assaults in Canada. It mentions what post-secondary institutions in Canada have been doing to try to combat and possibly eliminate sexual violence as it is also a big problem in Canada. A big portion of this paper talks about the policies, rules, and laws put in place for these institutions by the schools themselves or other outside sources and how they are executed when these laws, rules, and policies are broken and how to get the help needed in situations likes these.  

"Reauthorizing the Higher Education Act: Combating Campus Sexual Assault", 29 Jul. 2015

This government document details how the United States is trying to fight sexual assault. The hearing that caused this document was to help figure out ways to prevent these assaults from happening. 

"Not Alone: The First Report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students From Sexual Assault", Apr. 2014

This government document was put together by the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault. It was put together because of the extremely high sexual assault rates on university and college campuses. The document covers identifying, preventing, responding and enforcement. 

"The Hunting Ground", Mar. 2015

  The main focus in this documentary is on 2 women, Annie Clark and Andrea Pino and how their Title IX complaints against their schools on account of rape have become a stepping stone for universities and campuses throughout the United States. The documentary looks at how schools handle these situations and how it affects the students. The film also makes mention of Jameis Winston, a university football player who was accused by a woman of assaulting her and how he was protected by his school and the victim was told to "drop it". 

Grigoriadis, Vanessa "What the Weinstein Effect Can Teach Us About Campus Sexual Assault", Nov. 15

With all the people coming forward in light of the Harvey Weinstein incident, it has created a somewhat safe space for people to come forward with stories of their own because they now have a support system of hundreds of thousands of people who will acknowledge them and understand what their going through. This article explains the similarities and differences of workplace assault versus campus assault. The one glaring difference between the two is the situations themselves. In Hollywood, it is normally someone of power or someone with lots of influence who targets their victims who rank lower in the social hierarchy of Hollywood. On campuses, these assaults normally take place in dorms and the like, after school hours.