This is a call to compassion for victims of sexual assault, and a call for the community to be aware of the travesty that is happening at Penn State.
There is a report of sexual assault almost every weekend. Recently, an employee at the university responded to a mass email alert with the following: “How do I unsubscribe from receiving these emails and text messages. I would still like to receive important messages, just not these.”
This attitude is not uncommon, but it is infuriating, to say the very least. For an institution that once harbored the worst kind of sexual predator, this attitude is unacceptable. I don’t know the answers to this problem, but I am grateful that Penn State President Eric Barron is enacting the recommendations of the Task Force on Sexual Assault and Harassment. However, if the members of the community do not take this seriously, their mission will not receive the support it needs.
If you’re a part of the university and feel inconvenienced by having to take additional training in an effort to help victims and put an end to this horror, or an alert to an assault is not “important” to you, it’s time for you to leave. It’s time for an era of people genuinely committed to creating a safe environment for everyone on this campus and in this town. While sexual assault on college campuses is an issues across the nation, let’s focus on the problem at home.