LAWRENCE, Kan. – University of Kansas students took part in an unconventional discussion about sexual assault on Wednesday night. There was more laughter than one might have expected during the discussion prompted by a spike in reported assaults on campus, which was used to help the crowd dig into such a tough topic.
A new report shows just how much reported cases spiked from 2013, to last year, highlighting the need for action.
"There are a lot of college kids on campuses today that they either don't know how to have the conversation around consent. They don't know what to do in situations around bystander behavior and how to help each other out," said GreekGab President Kristin Wing.
On this night, they got help from a man who uses humor to get into such a dark topic.
"We're real excited because we know that sexual assault has been an issue on our campus, so we're real excited to have Jeffrey here to kind of break the barriers and to give us more information of what that's all about and ways to combat that," said Madi Bolt, junior president of sorority Delta Gamma.
Jeffrey Bucholtz is a director for "We End Violence" and part of his discussion delved into victim blaming.
"Short skirts don't cause rape. Alcohol does not cause rape. Rapist cause rape," Bucholtz said.
It's something he says he can't believe still happens in 2015, and he says most don't even realize they do it.
"We hear people say things like, ‘oh, those girls when they go out like that they're asking for trouble,’ and no one when they say that means, ‘yes, those girls should be raped.’ What they're saying to every victim in the room, or every potential victim in the room, is that when this happens to you, we won't believe you," said Bucholtz.
The speaker also had the students sing along to some of the most popular songs to show how the things we constantly see and hear can affect our perception of sex. Based on some of the lyrics, he said he's not surprised some have become calloused to unwanted sexual contact.