The Ecole Polytechnique massacre in Montreal was 29 years ago, where 14 women were killed for the simple fact that they were women.
Victoria park glowed last night as the community gathered to show support for all the women we have lost because of sexual violence, and women who are currently struggling with this across Canada, and worldwide.
Western student Bridget who studies women studies, explains the history behind this ritual “A man thought that women shouldn’t be engineers and he thought it was his right almost to kill them because he didn’t agree with women learning in a university setting, and the women shouldn’t be able to do things that men can do.”
Bridget emphasizes that we are still having issues with this today ” I think its important to show how much the world has changed since then, and how theres also still some people who think that way and how wrong that is, we have to empower women. “
The community showed support by lighting candles as public speakers told their stories. Of all the women stepping up to the mic, Dennis represents the mens responsibilities in sexual violence “When I think of this day, I think of the balance lacking in society, and people need to understand that these things have happened because of dominant male privilege”
Female speaker Sam elaborates on why having a male voice is important
“Women are definitely one part of changing this narrative, but I appreciated having Dennis’ voice here because he plays the vital half with the mens responsibilities, it’s not just women alone, it’s both.”