Skip to comments.Joe Biden Interview on Rape Culture and Campus Sexual Assault
Posted on 04/18/2017 12:38:54 PM PDT by nickcarraway
You have an obligation to step up.
There are a lot of reasons to love former vice president Joe Biden. He's had a long and storied political career, he's one of the leaders in the government's fight against cancer; then there's his love for ice cream, his kind demeanor, and charming finger point (you know the one) earning him the nickname "Uncle Joe," and of course there were those memes. If you weren't convinced he was a national treasure before, then President Obama called then Vice President Biden "the best vice president America's ever had" when he awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, cementing his mark on history. Beyond all of that, his commitment to ending sexual assault on campus is changing the way U.S. schools are making sure women and girls are treated as equals on campus.
Biden helped draft the Violence Against Women Act, which was passed in 1994. In 2007, a report found that one in five women on college campuses was experiencing sexual assault. Ten years later, that number has not changed. That's why, in the ensuing years, the vice president has worked hard to challenge leaders, college presidents, and you and me to think hard about exactly why sexual assault is so prevalent on college campuses. One of the key issues, he says, is consent, which is why he's leading the It's On Us campaign, an effort to get people to realize they too have a role in stopping sexual assault whether that's intervening as a bystander, or committing to getting enthusiastic, verbal consent from a sexual partner.
Because of all his work to end sexual assault on campus, we talked to Vice President Biden during Sexual Assault Awareness Month about his efforts, about how sexual assault on campus initiatives may change under the Trump administration, and about why including everyone in the conversation surrounding sexual assault is so important. Teen Vogue: Your It's On Us campaign doesnt address sexual assault survivors, but everyone else. Why?
Vice President Joe Biden: We're in a situation where one in five women on a college campus is likely to be sexually assaulted. Young women were the most susceptible to be assaulted again after first being assaulted. They became victimized. There's even data growing [from] the Centers for Disease Control that women suffer from post-traumatic stress as a consequence of this.
We had thousands and thousands of high school and college students on the telephone and I addressed them ... by saying look, we need your help. Any suggestions you have how we can make the college campuses or high school campuses safer for you, let us know.... I felt like an idiot when I got the responses. The overwhelming, spontaneous response without any prompting was, get men involved. Get men involved. Although we had been working on trying to change the culture with men as well, all of a sudden it hit us.
That's when we started the "It's on Us" campaign, going out to college campuses because bystanders who see something happen, in my view, if they don't holler, scream, pick up the phone and call and intervene, they are complicitous in the commission of a crime. They are complicitous.
Look, if you see a brother taking a drunk freshman coed up the stairs to his room and you do nothing, you're a coward. You are a coward. You have an obligation to step up. You know that she's not able to give consent. And so, I went on campuses, we put together this program, and more than 400,000 people have signed the pledge to intervene. That's how you change attitudes get a critical mass of people beginning to speak out so that the attacker or the bystander is the pariah, not the woman being assaulted, whether she's drunk or sober.
TV: You had a recent PSA come out and it featured some very realistic text messages between two young men where they are talking casually about a sexual assault. What were you hoping to show with this, and is this an example of a larger problem?
JB: It is an example of a larger problem. It's an example of a larger cultural problem. We're trying to let young men understand that without consent, meaning saying yes, it is OK to touch me, yes it is OK to pull me into this bed, yes it is OK to have intercourse with me, then it is not consent. If a young woman is drunk, SHE CANNOT CONSENT. She cannot consent, and it's rape. It's rape. It's rape. It's rape. I wanted them to see because it's clear what the subtext is.
I've had young men on campuses say to me, I've never thought of it that way. I've never thought of that way, as long as she wasn't screaming and kicking me and yelling help then it was probably OK. It's not OK. It's not OK unless she can affirmatively consent.
TV: Are there any expectations that young men face that you think actually contribute to rape culture?
JB: This is a cultural problem. A fundamentally cultural problem. What is built into the system? The assumption that you must have done something. You knew him, you must have at least by implication consented to something. You must have led him on. There were laws all over the country that in fact contributed to this notion that there's no need to respect a woman's autonomy because it's just not that important. The other thing is that there are a lot of young men who come up because of that culture that they were raised in and think they have to be tough guys. They think, if you go to kiss her and she doesn't want to kiss you, pull her tight and kiss her anyway: Be a man, stand up. There are those pressures that are waning, but they've existed. They've existed in society, but none of them justify anything other than parents beginning to teach their children, their boys, what appropriate conduct is, and we have to turn this idea on its head.
Being a man means respecting a woman's autonomy, not invading a woman's autonomy. You want to be a strong man? Respect.
Anybody who sits in a locker room [where] a guy says, You know, I was out last night and I reached up and I grabbed her panties and I did this and that, and doesn't turn to the guy and says, You horses tail, what the hell is the matter with you? if you sit there and you act like, Oh yeah, man, that's cool, it perpetuates this whole notion, so men have to begin to speak up.
TV: Are there any examples of successes youve seen at the college level in terms of instituting change?
JB: I carried the White House task force on this issue, and because of our report, many schools now conduct what we call climate surveys to quantify the extent of sexual assault on campuses. So what happens is these results of these campus surveys begin to validate what we've known for 20, years that approximately one in five women in college experience sexual assault, so schools began to beef up their assault response teams that put procedures in place to make sure that there is no ongoing threat of retaliation if a woman does report, and more research has been conducted on prevention programs and more schools [are] implementing these prevention programs.
Now, this commitment has to come from the top. College presidents have to be involved. You can't view this problem as somebody else's problem, and schools across the board are getting better at this. No school wants to do a lot of reporting, because if you're a great school, you're academically qualified, and you report you have X number of incidents of rape or sexual assault on campus, you say, well, maybe we'll be downgraded, but since everybody is starting to step up, it really is now, everybody is realizing it doesn't matter whether you're at a great Ivy institution or you're in a tier-3 college. It's the same everywhere.
TV: You've mentioned Title IX a couple of times now. People believe Betsy DeVos may be severely limiting Title IX protections for sexual assault survivors.
JB: Let me tell you, it bothers me most if Secretary DeVos is going to really dumb down Title IX enforcement. The real message, the real frightening message you're going to send out is, our culture says it's OK. You know, the major reason why women drop out of college when they're a freshman is because of sexual assault. Not their grades, sexual assault. And so, it would be devastating.
No father or mother should drop their kid off this late August, early September at their first day at college and drive away worried [if she is] going to be safe. Most parents don't drive away saying, Is she going to do all right in school? Is she academically qualified? Will she show up for class? How well is she going to do? That's not the conversation going on. The conversation that's going on is, is she going to be safe? That is an obligation of the school, and Title IX is the vehicle, and when Secretary DeVos by her silence didn't affirm that rape and sexual assault are forms of sexual discrimination ... God, if anything is sexual discrimination, it's rape and assault. And that's why schools have an obligation under Title IX to prevent this from happening.
I'm often asked over the years, because I'm so passionate about this, "OK, Senator, Mr. Vice President, when will you say you've succeeded?" There's always going to be violence, but we will have succeeded when no young woman in a high school or college campus who is sexually assaulted or raped ever ask[s] herself, What did I do to deserve this? It is never, never, never, never her fault. She could be drop-dead drunk. She could walk across the campus naked. Nobody, nobody, has a right to touch her. Nobody. And it will be a success when no young man actually believes [it] when he says to himself, Well, she deserved it or I had a right to do that.
Interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.
Oh. My. Gawd.
These people are mentally ILL if they think old, Touchy McFeely should be their Poster Boy, LOL!
File “campus rape epidemic” under Fake News. It doesn’t exist.
Well, what good was the act?
How about rape culture and pederasty in Hollywood?
Rape culture = islam
Why do the democrats want to flood America with muslims?
1 in 5 women experience regret and shame the morning after. That is a more accurate stat.
This from the guy who can’t keep his paws off pubescent girls.
He does his best to bring attention to sexual assault by swimming nude in front of his female Secret Service agents.
The author is naive . . and nuts
Gee. Thanks. *BLECH*
I also have wondered this. Why would Rats and others want all these Muslims, who hate us and raise a second generation of terrorists, wan them in the USA? Must be because they hate this country, want our way of life destroyed.
His hands are just biden their time until they get restless.
The way to end sexual “assault” on campus is twofold:
1. Redefine assault in accordance with the laws of the state, rather than the Women’s Studies Dept.
2. Don’t let college girls get drunk.
99% ceases to exist.
Many people on here don’t get it. To them, Muslims are just a tool to attack Christians, etc. As soon as that is accomplished, the left will ground Muslims into dust. They don’t care about Muslims, they are just a means to an end. In 1400 years, Muslims could not challenge the West or Christianity. The left has brought them both to their nears in barely more than a century.
as bad as Hillary going on about losing becuase no one wants a man in the WH.
Yep. They really really suck.
WORSE when its a relative.....Easter was a bash!!!
The way to end sexual assault on campus is twofold
My neice in Medical school in albany told us on Easter that wonderful song **Baby its cold outside** is a rape song.
And all the snowflakes agreed!
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