Friday, September 11, 2009

Men against Rape: SL Opportunity!

Get your Service Learning hours with the hottest new movement on campus! Several of you have approached me with questions and suggestions, so thank you for the interest. I’d like to invite everyone to Men against Rape’s first meeting. What will we discuss? That’s largely up to you.

The first half of the meeting will be ideas: what the club should be about, what it should do and how it should be organized. I’ll share my ideas with you, and you’ll share yours with everyone else. Everybody’s thoughts will have equal weight without exception. Then we’ll reach a consensus through some good old fashioned face-to-face democracy.

The second half of the meeting will be action. We’ll divide up the things we’ve decided need to be done among individuals and groups. Hopefully by the end we’ll have some reasonably defined long-term goals, sort-term objectives and organizational structure.

Where and when? I’m happy to host at my sweet pad. I live in Riverwind Apartments at 120 Riverbridge Circle. It’s on the East side of Alafaya right after you enter Oviedo. As for when, I thought that throwing out a date and time right now would just conflict with everybody’s busy schedules. If you’re interested, please post when you are available so we can choose a time in the coming week that’s good for everyone. And please, bring a friend who’s interested!

Food for thought: Having such an active feminist scene at UCF is great, but it puts this club in an awkward position. More women want to join than men! What should women’s role be in Men against Rape? Should we just ignore the question and swallow the irony of the name (or change it for that matter) and become just another anti-rape group? Should women be relegated to an unequal, supportive role in order to preserve constructive male space? Should this become a United Front against Rape with a male caucus and a female caucus? I favor the last option, but it’s for everyone to decide. Please think about this, and feel free to post any other options that you can think of. This is the most important topic we need to address starting out.

Thank you again! Post anything: ideas, comments or interest in attending. Especially let me know what time is best for you.


Kelly T said...

Ross! I would LOVE to help out with this. If you all meet on weekends I can most likely be there. I can't always be involved so I won't be "joining" the club, but you can bet I will help out where I can, come to meetings and attend actions. So my time is sometime next weekend haha.

As for one of the last paragraphs you posted. If it remains Men Against Rape there definitely needs to be a discussion concerning the role of women in this club. I agree with you that majority (so far) of people interested are women, and that creates an issue between the members of the club and the name of the club. Although, I had never thought of the United Front against Rape with different male/female groups I think it's cool. But at the same time it upsets me that Men Against Rape would have to change because so many women want to be involved when there are already a few anti-violence organizations on campus women can go to help out and give their time/energy to without infringing on the "guys'" space.

I don't know... I'm torn, but those are my thoughts for now. At least until I hear input from others!


Merritt Johnson said...

I would loveeee to join this SLP! i think it's a great idea and cause! Having different types of people helping out, races, sexes, groups,would be helpful also. I think we could make a blog or facebook gorup to let people know about the group. I am free m/w/t after 2:20 and t/t after 2:45.

Ani Reina said...

I really like this idea but my schedule is supper crammed so my only days free are wed nights and friday all day. :(

Kelly T said...

so... thinking about this a bit more. I think that this group needs to remain just for men and maybe figure out a role for women to play "on the sidelines" if you will. There are seriously so many places for women to give their time and effort against sexual/domestic violence. Why when it's called "Men Against Rape" are more women now interested rather then when it's called "Victim Services"? I don't know, this is all really weird to me and it seems like we're not letting men have their space to help out in the struggle, once again we're barging in because it's a "feminist" issue and that's weird. That's like having a GLBTQ group barging in on us during our fight for same sex marriage just because it's "their cause" you know?

I'm not trying to be a negative Nancy here... just my opinion :D

Kevin Alvarez said...

Ross, I would love to be involved in getting this organization off the ground. This could be a great project for all of the men-identified people in our class to participate in. Especially since we had that discussion about the importance of male-centered spaces.

I agree with Kelly. There are several organizations that work on sexual violence issues that are filled primarily by women (Victims Services, National Organization for Women, UCF PD, etc.). I'm not trying to justify ostracizing the women who are interested in this project but I feel that the male-identifed people in the course should be the ones spearheading this project.

Ariel Dansky said...

I am interested! So is Jorge.

He's available Friday afternoon/nights and Wednesday afternoon/nights.

I do agree that it needs to be a predominantly male space if it is to remain "men aginst rape." I still would like to be involved in some way, though, if possible.

Maybe the women can help recruit members? If we all bring at least 1 guy, maybe it can remain a predominantly male space? Just an idea.

Ross said...

Thanks for the response! I see that a lot of people agree with Kelly's view on keeping the club mostly male. I have strong reservations towards that, for practical and egalitarian reasons, but the fact that we have a dialogue going is great.