To: Yale Administration
We, the undersigned proud members of the Yale community, denounce the behavior of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity pledge class on Wednesday October 13, 2010. On that night, under the instruction of leaders of the fraternity, DKE pledges marched through Old Campus chanting “No means yes! Yes means anal!” This threatening behavior contributes to an unsafe environment for everyone, an environment in which sex is treated as conquest.
We ask that President Levin publicly denounce the behavior of these young men. The university administration has an opportunity to send a strong message about the culture it seeks to foster, the values it espouses, and the conduct it expects of students. By not offering an unequivocal denunciation from the Office of the President, the university communicates indifference to DKE’s actions.
It is time for Yale to take action to address the culture around sexual speech and acts on campus. Events over the last few years have shown that this is necessary, from Zeta Psi’s “We Love Yale Sluts” sign in 2008, to an email rating freshwomen on their appearance last fall, to this year’s DKE incident. As members of the wider Yale community, we are concerned that Yale is allowing an environment to grow in which sexism, sexual harassment, and hate speech are seen as isolated and trivial incidents, rather than as serious issues warranting university response.
Finally, we stand with everyone on Old Campus and beyond who was offended or felt threatened by these actions. We applaud those students who have courageously spoken out against these acts in the last week and over the past years. We stand by all who are taking action to build a non-violent Yale based on mutual respect and dignity. You have our support.
Proud members of the Yale community
We invite Yale Alumni, faculty, staff, and parents to sign the petition. The letter and signatures will be published in a Yale Daily News ad later this week.
To sign, click here and scroll down to the comments. You may leave a comment below with your name, title, and Yale class year. Or you can simply email your support for the petition to firstname.lastname@example.org. You are welcome to also leave a personal note or statement of support.
If you are signing after 11:41pm PDT on Tuesday, October 19th, your name may not appear in the Yale Daily News ad due to the printing deadline. However, PLEASE ADD YOUR NAME BELOW. We are continuing to collect signatures to show as much support as possible for this effort.
Then, after you sign, please take two more steps:
1. Spread the word to others in the Yale community. Please act quickly; we have an October 20th deadline.
2. Please click on “Donate” at the top of this page and make a contribution toward the cost of Yale Daily News ad.
Note: Photo credit: Marc Smith