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This powerful spoken word performance about assault beautifully expresses how men can help

Posted on October 21, 2016 at 4:05 PM

The past few weeks the news has been focused on women and the issue of sexual assault. Presidential Nominee Donald Trump began a wave of outrage and speaking out with a video tape from several years ago. Donald was caught on tape bragging to Billy Bush about what amounts to sexually assaulting women because he is famous. Since that tape was released, numerous women have come forward about stories about being assaulted by Donald Trump. And on a larger scale, women have come forward with their stories of assault to offer a clearer picture of how common some of these instances are.


We are so empowered by all of the incredible women coming forward with their brave stories, and we hope this will create a positive and powerful dialogue.


But it’s important to note that men need to join the discussion too. It can start with pieces like this one by Steve Connell. He wrote and performs this powerful spoken word about men’s place and responsibility in the conversation about abuse.


We are the Lions

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This is such a powerful piece, and what we love about it is that it takes responsibility. It encourages people to see and speak and act in order to stop violence against women, and that is such an important message. Steve starts saying that he doesn’t have a problem with talk and the occasional crude joke between friends.


“However, I do have a problem with violence and cruelty and rape and abuse. And even if we know it’s just me, it’s just you, it’s just a few harmless jokes between me and my dudes that still perpetuates culture where it’s easy to confuse the link between the jokes and the bruise.”

Steve uses the metaphorical story of a village where lions keep killing women and girls in the night. The men try to wait it out and protect women, but it doesn’t work. Finally, they realize the men are turning into lions and killing the women and girls.


“And if we aren’t the lions, we are on their side. Too often standing proudly in defense of the pride perhaps afraid that if we stand with women against the lion we will be devoured, and so ironically to prove we aren’t cowards we become cowards, to prove we aren’t weak, we become weak, to prove we are still lions, we become sheep.”

We appreciate this powerful message, and we hope everyone takes Steve’s message to heart. This is a problem that men need to speak up for as well as women.


If we’re going to fix this, it’s going to be together!

Categories: Poetry

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