“The female victims fought, they yelled and they defended themselves and they stopped their assaults,” she said. “For that, we are all grateful.”
As for what advice she would give students to protect themselves, Stump said, “They’re going to have to figure that out for themselves. Walk in pairs. This is about men, too. We don’t know what it will escalate to.’ – Gainsville.com
By Anonymous — The year was 1990, and a serial killer was hunting students at the University of Florida. In less than half a week, four women were raped, murdered, and mutilated in their apartments just off campus. The fifth casualty was a male roommate of one of the female victims. Awoken from his sleep, he was not able to fend off the knife-wielding attacker.
Jump to 2014, the start of the fall semester, and three female students at the University of Florida were once again stalked by a man intent on sexual assault, and perhaps worse. The police have not been much help finding the suspect, as he looks like any average gator fan, white, male, late 20s, 200 pounds, wearing gator gear.
An attempted serial rapist Gator fan is on the loose at UF, coinciding during the weeks that there had begun a nationwide push to stop sexual violence on many university campuses.
Raising awareness to prevent sexual misconduct on campus is needed and admirable, yet it has been typically passive and reactive rather than proactive and preventative.
For example, student volunteers standing behind tables proclaiming if their efforts raising awareness helped prevent just one sexual assault today, it makes it all worth it, results in little more than a nice sound byte and photo-op for the administration to masquerade around like they are making all the required efforts to curb the problem.
Of course every avenue available should be made open for students to be able to report sexual assaults on campus, but what about teaching prevention through defense? Like, a punch in the throat style of prevention. Prevention through awareness and knowledge, but also strength, training, and, yes, weapons.
Let’s be realistic, how many young women have been truly trained to protect themselves? While knowledge is power, and the pen is mightier than the sword, fortune cookies blurbs seem to lose their poignancy when someone is trying to rape you. With so many young women interested in working out these days to gain the perfect body, campuses need to be promoting kickboxing or Krav Maga classes versus Zumba and yoga.
Parents should provide their daughters with a head start and encourage they learn Jiu-jitsu, as opposed to gymnastics. It is up to proper role models to demonstrate to young women that the best accessory for a handbag is a black belt.
This is not to be misconstrued that we should teach young women to be street fighters, rather we are teaching them to not be victims and to know how to protect themselves. A small-framed woman can take down a two hundred pound man like a sack of potatoes, if she has been properly trained and correctly acts on that training. That training cannot be found in any Disney movie.
Then there are the instances where Samuel Colt’s great equalizer is needed. What would have happened if Rolling had selected an apartment whose occupant owned a handgun and was trained to use it? All of the victims lived in apartments off campus and were allowed to own a firearm, but none did.
Complicating the issue is the fact that it is currently illegal for a woman with a concealed carry permit to have a firearm for protection on campus or when leaving a bar. There are no easy answers to this, but gun free zones often are nothing more than a target rich environment of potential victims.
If we truly want to prevent sexual assaults, lets start training young women to use martial arts and weapons. If there ever was a useful skill to take into this world, it is self-defense, which breeds self-confidence. Back in in 1990, the newspapers reported that the students who were staying in town were descending on the gun stores purchasing their own .357 magnums and tech9 machine pistols.
Little old ladies were coming into the pawnshops wanting to get strapped up with 12 gauges. More often than not, the gun was the only way for people to truly feel a sense of security in their own homes and apartments when there were real bogeymen actually lurking in the dark doing horrible things during the cover of night.
Women should not fear the bogeymen. The bogeymen should fear them.