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DNA Discussion: The Kavanaugh Effect

The room was quiet as people of all different races, shapes, and sizes filed into the room, each person carrying their own facial expression as they prepared themselves for the discussion about to take place. These conversations are meant to be uncomfortable as they are primarily centered around topics that are not the easiest to discuss. The feeling in the room was tense nonetheless as it always seems to be when these conversations take place.

When these conversations take place, it is not always easy to hear the other side. Students walk in with a predetermined opinion about the topic. The forum began with hosts, Kelly Johnson and Steve Broussard. The event began with background information on Brett Kavanaugh and how he got to where he is now.

The floor opened up as the question “What does Kavanaugh’s appointment to the bench say about sexual assault in the United States?” crossed the screen. The question was able to cut straight to the point while simultaneously grabbing the audience’s attendance.

“This nomination has been difficult for me” said an anonymous Wilmington College student. “Because of this I feel that I’m not taken seriously through my sexual assault experience.”

Immediately the tone was set for the rest of the night as one student spoke about her own sexual assault experience. Not only was this a courageous act, but it also set the tone as much deeper than a simple appointment. Women all across the country felt personally attacked by this decision.

As the conversation proceeded, there were conversations about the #MeTooMovement and whether or not the movement was over. Seeing as the #MeTooMovement was started by victims of sexual assault, it was important that it be mentioned in the forum. The conversation surrounding the question was hopeful overall, but each person seemed to arrive at the same conclusion: It is going to change.

“I don’t think the me too movement is over but i think it needs to evolve and include more action,” said an anonymous Wilmington College Student. “Social media doesn’t give you justice.”

As the event came to an end, the DNA staff closed by asking the question that had been hanging over the audience for the entirety of the conversation: “Are you ‘#CancelKavanaugh’ or ‘#ConfrimKavanaugh’?”

As the crowd waited for a response from their peers, a student confidently stood up and said  “I understand his outbursts because being attacked would stress you out,”. Although this idea was not shared by the entirety of the room, there was still a sense of respect as there is at each DNA event, inevitably making students and staff alike feel comfortable.


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