On Feb. 8, 2017 at 1:30 p.m. Olivet College students gathered inside of Mott Auditorium on Olivet’s campus to listened to a presentation called ‘The Hook-up’ addressing the social issue of sex on college campuses.
The presentation was presented by Paula Ramirez of Catharsis productions based out of Chicago, Illinois.
“I am an actor that is my background. Seven years ago I started combining theater and acting with social issues and immediately I got hooked, and when I found Catharsis I knew that this was the path for me right now. Being able to combine the skill of performing with also a subject that I really care about is important to me,” said Ramirez in a recorded interview after the show.
Ramirez’s’ style of presenting involved a lot of interaction with the crowd. She stood next to two average size whiteboards that Ramirez used as props to make illustrations and to better explain her message.
‘The hook-up’ focused on many sexual issues common on college campuses such as: Common stereo types of both men and women, alcohol and drugs, sexual assault and the differences between a good hookup, a bad hookup and rape.
Right from the beginning Ramirez asked primarily to the male audience to say some common phrases about women who are perceived to having a lot of sexual partners. The names that the crowd shouted out were, “Slut, whore, ho, floozy, easy, chicken head and thot.”
The meaning of these words vary, but they all generally explain a women who is discussed or applies herself in sexual actions. These words are most commonly said as result of reputations given in a particular community, but these words are also used as an insult without evidence to realistically classify someone with one of these particular titles.
As Ramirez turned to the other whiteboard it was the women’s turn, as they describe men perceived to having multiple sexual partners. “The man, dog, man whore, douche bag, tool and stud,” were all the names said by the audience, but they were perceived as having somewhat of a positive meaning within a group of male friends.
All these terms essentially mean the same thing but instead men’s terms are described by the crowd as a double standard because when men say these words to each other they tend to think positive while in the women’s case this brings on a negative view for that particular woman within their friend group or community.
Next, Ramirez talked about the issue of Continuum Harm, “Continuum harm is what happens when words lead into sexual assault, it’s when language that is damaging goes unchecked, it will escalate.” For example, hypothetically, a man is having another conversation with another man about a particular woman. One man starts making sexually aggressive comments about a woman, and it escalates to a point where the male acts upon the words he has said without any outside interference.
3% of American men, one in every 33 have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime according to www.rainn.org a website that gathers rape statistics.
Alcohol and drugs was another important message Ramirez told the crowd. While an individual is intoxicated they cannot legally give consent for sexual activity. Sexual assault and rape are both crimes and while an individual is intoxicated they are not considered free from guilt, according to Ramirez and confirmed on rainn.org
Later in the show, Ramirez asked the audience to describe what is known as a good hookup, a bad hookup and rape.
These lists were created by the crowd during ‘The Hookup’ presentation.
Verbal consent, chemistry, protection and mood.
Verbal consent as well as bad hygiene, faking it, no orgasms, two pump chumps, overly aggressive, lack of communication and going home with a bad feeling.
No consent, force both physically, mentally and emotionally, intended use of alcohol and or drugs, coercion or manipulation.
Now the crowd did agree that alcohol can play a strong influence in all situations whether it is consider a good hook up, a bad hook up or rape.
The most common substance used when someone is raped or sexual assaulted is from alcohol according to rain.org
Ramirez had this to say about her passion towards sexual assault on college campuses, “It’s super important, it’s a problem everywhere right now with our culture and I think it’s great when I’m able to come in and talk with students who can go out there and change this culture.”