“Till It Happens to You”

“Till It Happens to You”

Hey Everyone!

Hope everyone is having a great week of classes. Today I am going to talk about a music video that has been all over my Facebook, Lady Ga Ga’s video “Till It Happens to You.” This video is from the documentary “The Hunting Ground” which examines the issue of sexual assault among college students. Some of you may have come to SHARPP’S screening of this documentary. “The Hunting Ground” is a powerful documentary about sexual assaults on college campuses. As I watched this documentary I was shocked to learn how much some colleges try to silence and hide cases of sexual assaults. It definitely made me appreciate all UNH does about these issues. We are lucky to have SHARPP as well as Allies tackling these issues on our campus. If you haven’t seen the documentary I recommend you do. It makes you realize how important it is to raise awareness and to never tolerate issues like sexual assault. It also shows how many victims there are on college campuses. 1 in 5 women will be sexually assaulted while in college and 1 in 10 men will be sexually assaulted while in college. These numbers are very disturbing to me and I don’t understand how some colleges do not take necessary steps in helping survivors.
Now let’s go back to Lady Ga Ga’s video … If you haven’t seen it I suggest you do. It is a powerful message that needs to be shown to everyone.

You can see it here.  I learned that Lady Ga Ga was raped at the age of 19 so she wanted to do this video to help survivors and raise awareness. She said it didn’t hit her that she was raped until 4-5 years later, and it hit her hard. She was traumatized like all survivors are.

This video shows a handful of women being raped, grieving, then the comfort of friendship and standing together. This issue can effect anyone at any time. In the video you see specifically 4 girls being raped. The first survivor appears to be raped by someone she knows, a friend, someone she trusts. According to RAINN, 4 out of 5 rapes are completed by someone the victim knows. I find it so hard to believe that someone you know is capable of doing such an act… It is very scary to think that this would happen and even scarier that someone you trust could do this.

The second survivor is slammed to a counter and raped. You can see her tears and how she is trying to fight back but can’t do anything. It is so upsetting to watch, it makes me so mad that sexual assault occurs. It just continues to sow the importance of standing with survivors and making a difference on college campuses.

The third and fourth survivors are at a college party having fun than a guy slips pills in each of their drinks. It’s sad to think these girls were just our having fun then a guy can take advantage of them. They were unconscious and this guy leaves with them. He is basically carrying both these unconscious girls out of the party and not one person said one thing. He took them into a room and raped both of them. This act makes me sick and again I just don’t understand… I get so angry thinking of how this happens on college campuses, and so many people don’t do anything about it.

We also see in this video the grieving process these survivors go through. They have words written on their body like “sometimes I hate myself “, “believe me”, and “listen”. The most inspiring part of this video to me is how survivors came together, friends came together for these survivors. By the end of the video the words written on their bodies were “I am worthy” and “I love myself”. This shows the effects of standing with survivors has. So we must do this on our campus today!

A still from Lady Gaga’s new video showing sexual assault Photo: Lady Gaga/Vevo

The one critique I have would be this video did not show the male side of things. Males can also be victims of sexual assault. In Fact 1 in 10 men will be victims of sexual assault in college. This issue needs to also be addressed and this statistic I feel should have also been shown at the end of this video. We need to think about everyone when it comes to sexual assault because anyone could be a victim!

Overall I found this video to be powerful, and inspirational and I hope it helps to make a difference in our society. We must stick together, be active bystanders, be supporting friends, and most importantly STAND WITH our survivors! Always remember YOU CAN HELP, and SHARPP is here with a passion to help our survivors.