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Letter: SAGA members discuss Mr. Concordia event: A response

I wanted to take a minute to reply to an article in last week’s Concordian that discussed my participation in Mr. Concordia. I would just like to explain my lyrics in attempt to clear up the misunderstanding that may have been portrayed.  To start with, I love the work of SAGA. I’m a supporter and an ally, so I don’t want to seem like I’m not on their side because I love what they do for this campus and world. I just want to explain the true meaning behind my rap and share my side of the story.

First and foremost to anyone who felt objectified by my rap, my deepest apologies. I never would try to objectify women, and that isn’t the meaning behind my lyrics at all. If you were offended, I hope that learning more of the true meaning behind my lyrics will allow you to see that I meant well.

The piece stated, “The performance was about finding the sweetest girl, but the man lost interest and found a new girl.” Not correct. The song was based on a true story about a girl I dated for a long time, and thought was the sweetest girl who I’d be with forever (verse 1). Even though she was so sweet (and still is) we eventually realized we weren’t meant to be together so we split up (verse 2). After we split up, I met another girl who I thought was incredibly sweet, but I still had feelings for my ex. I then was really confused if I liked my ex-girlfriend or this new girl (verse 3).  While trying to figure it out, I ended up with neither (thus the girls walking off stage without me at the end of the skit while I was pondering while sitting in the chair).

In the song I rapped about both girls’ sweetness and the happiness they brought to me when I was with them, and I never once made a sexual or physical reference. The two girls on the stage were two of my best friends, so saying I was objectifying them was hurtful to them and me. It’s something I would never try to do to anyone, especially to Maddie and Maddie. Just as I would never try to objectify them, they would not let themselves be objectified. They are both tireless advocates for women’s rights. Together, they started the organization on campus called Girls in Real Life, GIRL, (join it!) which focuses on improving the body image, self-esteem and empowerment among middle school girls during a rough and important time in their life.

The article also said that a member thought it would have been less offensive if I did not include women. In my opinion, thinking that bringing two beautifully dressed women on stage for the song is objectification is a more of a product of our culture of objectification than the act was. When I asked the Maddies to help with me with the act, they were crazy excited to perform with me. We decided to dress fancy, and if how they were dressed caused them to seem objectified, then that’s a problem. What is wrong is to think that they should feel objectified for looking gorgeous on stage. Eliminating objectification should give them the freedom to dress as they wish and look confident doing so no matter who is watching, just like they did.

So how did we get off course? In this world we are faced with a great deal of injustice on a much too frequent of a basis, and we are blessed to be on a beautiful campus that urges us to approach these issues with a critical lens. The conversations, like the one SAGA held, are extremely important to an effective fight against injustice, and they must not be stifled. What is important is that if these conversations are going to be made public we must both allow each side to speak their part and deliver an accurate view of each story.

This letter was submitted by Mike Rose ’14.

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