I was saddened to see a letter in the summer edition in response to the article “It’s On Us” addressing sexual assault (Spring 2015). Annette Hepner’s feedback was wholeheartedly placing blame on survivors of sexual assault for their own victimization.
I understand that perhaps you want to provide a “fair” representation of the comments you receive on your articles, but her comment is factually inaccurate and plays into the very myths that keep survivors on campus silent about their assaults.
Part of the prevailing problem with addressing sexual assault on campus and in our communities is that blame still finds its way to those who are assaulted instead of sitting squarely on those who perpetrate sexual assault. By printing this response, the Quarterly has simply reinforced that belief or at least tacitly given it credence as a viable and legitimate perspective. The reality is that the only person to blame for sexual assault is the person who perpetrates the sexual assault. The comment was harmful to the many readers of your magazine who are survivors of sexual assault at the UO and beyond, and those who work to educate the public about the reality of the issue. If ending sexual violence is truly “on us,” as your Spring 2015 feature suggested, then publishing such a comment is incongruent with this perspective and deeply damaging.
Colorado Coalition against Sexual Assault
What a lovely surprise to find Arun Narayan Toké and Skipping Stones recognized in Oregon Quarterly’s pages (“Skipping Stones as a Steppingstone,” Summer 2015). The article brought back many great memories of my own internship with Arun in the early 1990s. It makes me happy to see him recognized for the great work he facilitates with the help of UO interns. It was also nice to be reminded of the valuable experiences that can be found at small, community-minded nonprofits doing important work not far from campus. Thank you again for this article.
Jennifer Viale, BA ’92
San Francisco, California
Regarding “12 Keys to 6 Cases” (Summer 2015), thank you for your eloquent recounting of what we knew Dave Frohnmayer to be: lawyer first, never putting politics above principle. How long will it be until we have another attorney general with those characteristics?
A Word of Thanks
Excellent essay on the 1918 flu epidemic (“The Great Pandemic,” Spring 2015). Interesting how a calm recitation of simply the sequence of events and facts can be so moving. Thanks.
Bob Carrico, BA ’68
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Please submit your letters at OregonQuarterly.com, to quarterly[at]uoregon[dot]edu, or by mail to Editor, Oregon Quarterly, 5228 University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403-5228. You may also post comments online. Published letters may be edited for brevity, clarity, and style.
We mistakenly referred to Dave Frohnmayer as the UO’s longest-serving president in our summer issue. That distinction goes to Prince Lucien Campbell, who served from 1902 to 1925.