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Dear Daughters, We Have Lost Our Way on the Moral Compass

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Dear Daughters,

I realize that the morally appalling and extremely disturbing chant heard during campus orientation at Saint Mary’s University this school year was all over the news a few weeks ago. I never got a chance to write about it then but this is something I must include on Dear Daughters. It is simply something that must be talked about and it is something that everyone needs to hear.

I graduated from Saint Mary’s University in the late 1990s with a Bachelor of Science Degree. While there I played on both the varsity soccer and hockey teams. I loved my experience at Saint Mary’s University so I was very ashamed to hear my alma mater was in the news for something so disgusting and unacceptable.

Watch the video so you know exactly what I am talking about:

If you prefer not to watch, no worries. Here are the words of this offensive chant:

SMU boys we like them young

Y is for your sister

O is for oh so tight

U is for underage

N is for no consent

G is for grab that ass

If you did not watch the video I need to point out to you that guys are not the only ones clapping and proudly shouting out these morally appalling words. There are just as many girls seen participating. What? It is beyond wrong that guys are even thinking these things, saying these things, but girls…really? By participating you are supporting them! The whole scene is just so, so wrong.

The words to the chant make me so absolutely sick I can barely stand to discuss them. They are self-explanatory. According to the chant, they like underage girls which means all these SMU boys like to have sex with girls aged 15 and under. You can read all about the age of consent in Canada in this article, Age of consent for sexual activity in Canada.

Besides the actual meaning of the chant, I am also disturbed by the fact that I think all of the students know exactly what they are saying but I bet if you asked each one of the male participants if they really like underage girls, each of them would be shocked and disgusted that we thought they wanted to have sex with junior high and elementary school girls. I bet the female participants would tell us they certainly do not approve of University guys having sex with junior high and elementary school girls. And yet there they all are, proudly chanting and teaching it year after year to new SMU students.

This chant demonstrates what is wrong with our society. We have lost our way on the moral compass. We are so bombarded with sexual images and content and we are so rarely held accountable for any of our actions that our society has created a recipe for disaster. These SMU students don’t want to have non-consensual sex with underage girls. They just wanted to be “cool” and “fit in” and were simply doing what has been done in years past during frosh week. That is what our society does. We tend to do what has always been done even if it is wrong. We don’t think. We don’t question when something seems wrong. We don’t even question when something is OBVIOUSLY wrong as in the case of this chant. Who doesn’t know that what those words convey is WRONG? Everyone knows they are wrong but no one seems to have integrity anymore.

It is not okay for our society to continue on as it is. If people had integrity and spoke up for what is wrong and did what is right in the first place, Rehtaeh Parsons would still be with us. She would never have been raped. She would never have been shamed. People tend to pass horrific things off when they happen outside of their community and/or to strangers, thinking they would never happen to them or someone they know. Well guess what? Rehtaeh Parsons went to Cole Harbour High School. I graduated from Cole Harbour High School. Saint Mary’s students are behind the non-consensual sex chant. I graduated from Saint Mary’s University. Dear Daughters, this type of thing is happening in our community. Rape culture is alive and well in our community…and it needs to leave.

SMU administration says they had no knowledge of the chant until the video was posted online. In response, “All of the 80 frosh week leaders and the entire Saint Mary’s University student union executive have been ordered to take sensitivity training.

The executive is also being sent to a conference at St. Francis Xavier University next week to learn about issues of sexual violence and consent.”

You can read CBC’s entire article for more information about Saint Mary’s University reaction.

Together we can find our way again as a society. We need to bring integrity back. People need to stand up for what is right. The problem is that it is hard to know what is right and wrong anymore. Society is blurring the lines. Music videos feature twerking, gyrating, scantily clad girls and then we tell boys girls are not sexual objects. Boys are encouraged by the media to be strong and dominate and their popularity seems to be rated in accordance to how many notches they can carve into their bedposts. Boys who decide to have sex with a girl against her will are not punished and instead blame the girl, and society supports the boy. Our moral compass should tell us that is wrong. But with no one being held accountable for their actions and more and more sexual content being thrown in our faces every single day (Miley Cyrus, Robin Thicke’s song, Blurred lines, the music industry as a whole, the SMU chant, etc) the needle on our moral compass is starting to point to “no holds barred”. Seems anyone can do anything and get away with it. I am not okay with that. That is why I started this blog in the first place. The first step is to identify the problem. The next step is to discuss it. The third step is that a solution needs to be identified. The final step is to implement the solution. This blog definitely accomplishes the first two steps and I hope this blog can help get our moral compass back on track.

Moral Compass

No Holds Barred on Our Moral Compass

2 Comments

  1. You have hit the nail on the head. In regards to the media, they will react to the public outrage if/when there is any. Media tends to go for the shock value. If they are offending people, they push harder. The way to affect the music industry is in their bottom lines. When they see their profits decline, they pay attention. Affecting the industry may be a long way off. However, holding people accountable is not. Leah Parsons and her supporters are making change happen. “Don’t be that Guy” poster campaign (from Edmonton) is garnering recognition and being used in parts of Canada, Scotland, and some cities in the U.S. It’s raising ire with the Men’s Rights groups who would rather blame the victims. Campus activists in the states are making changes to campus policy regarding rape and more universities are expelling students for their actions instead of suspending them for a short time. Judges are being held accountable more often for their comments against victims of rape. Steps are being taken to change attitudes, so take heart. We all need to identify when we see rape culture and act to bring it to light. The noise from those who want to bring positive change should always be louder than those who want to maintain victim blaming.

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