Monday, April 4, 2011

The Power of the Group...

"We must remember that one determined person can make a significant difference, and that a small group of determined people can change the course of history." ~Sonia Johnson 

I've been thinking about people coming together... it seems that now more than ever it's easy to form groups according to our likes, dislikes, principles, beliefs, choice of entertainment, choice of food... anything really. It's so easy to become a part of something or to speak up about something without actively getting out and about. I'm an on-line activist - I sign petitions with Avaaz.org, Greenpeace, WWF and miscellaneous Care2 petitions that I take an interest in. It makes me feel like a part of something - gives me the assurance that even in my everyday life I can make a difference through my signature and contributions. 

One organised event struck me this week: SlutWalk Toronto - which took place yesterday (April 3rd). This event was organised in response to an officer of the Toronto Police Force suggesting that 'women can avoid sexual assault by not dressing like a “slut.”' I'm in full support of any event like this - it should not matter in any way how a woman is dressed and in fact this reminds me a bit of my short skirt post... What struck me from the event page? These paragraphs below - clearly a call to action and clearly showing what is needed:
"We are a movement demanding that our voices be heard. We are here to call foul on our Police Force and demand change. We want Toronto Police Services to take serious steps to regain our trust. We want to feel that we will be respected and protected should we ever need them, but more importantly be certain that those charged with our safety have a true understanding of what it is to be a survivor of sexual assault — slut or otherwise.
We are tired of speeches filled with lip service and the apologies that accompany them. What we want is meaningful dialogue and we are doing something about it: WE ARE COMING TOGETHER. As people from all gender expressions and orientations, all walks of life, levels of employment and education, all races, ages, abilities, and backgrounds, from all points of this city and elsewhere."
I guess it struck home for me. People (men and women) need to know where they stand on issues such as this and then it can follow that further issues can be discussed and developed. 

peace,
Ren

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