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Libby Chidlow

We the People: F--kRapeCulture rally was target of snide remarks by insensitive bystanders

The organization and allies gathered to take a stand against sexual assault and domestic abuse through a march and rally through Athens.


F--kRapeCulture, an organization against domestic violence, sexual assault and rape culture, had its third annual march on Mill Street and down Court Street to the Civil War Monument on Friday. The march was a demonstration of solidarity against sexual crimes that plague not only college students, but also many individuals both young and old, students and alumni.

As people began to congregate at the bottom of Jefferson Hill, lipstick, Sharpies and words of support were passed along. The lipstick and Sharpies were used by protesters to express their emotions toward rape culture with written statements on their bodies. There were also members of the Student Union and Feminist Equality Movement standing and marching alongside FRC with signs to show their support.

As the march began, many bystanders passed by and some even joined the rally. What was sad and distasteful were the bystanders that passed by during the speeches at the monument who made snide remarks about the movement and the issues it focused on.

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A protester stood by the gate leading into College Green from Court Street with a sign that said “rapists are safe here,” a statement directed toward the administration of Ohio University. As a student walked passed he laughed and said, “Well then, I guess I’ll be a rapist,” and casually walked off. It was absolutely disgusting and terrifying to hear those words come out of someone’s mouth, especially someone who represents Ohio University and its education system.

In 2014, there was a large number of crimes reported. Domestic assault reports accounted for 596,270 of those crimes and rape/sexual assault accounted for 150,420 of them. Those numbers include people of all genders, sexes and sexualities. The issue at hand affects everyone, and people, like the insensitive bystander, treat it like a joke. They do not see a problem with rape culture and the violence it causes. Actually, he was probably one of many that cannot see any form of rape culture since it has become so normalized in the American culture.

Attending rallies like FRC’s is a great way to learn how to combat rape culture and hear narratives from people who have experienced it firsthand. It was amazing how the energy of the rally drew people in and had police completely shut down Court Street.

Hopefully, in the long run, allies and members of FRC will not only shut down Court Street, but will also shut down the violent sexual and domestic assaults on campus — making it a place where the bricks are the same, but the stories are finally different.

Elizabeth Chidlow is a sophomore studying journalism. What do you think of FRC’s march? Email her at

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