To add this blog to your feeds, please click here to subscribe.

Am I An Actual Human Being?

By William E. Hannum III

With the new school year well underway, please consider a few thoughts from a former swimmer at Stanford University, taken from a recent CNN article entitled “Ex-Stanford Swimmer: Brock Turner is ‘the Problem.‘”

This alumnus and father offered the following thoughts on the problem of sexual assaults on school campuses. His comments were made in connection with the controversy surrounding the rape of a fellow student by Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner (who was recently released from jail after serving only three months of a controversial six-month sentence on his rape conviction).

• “It is imperative for men to speak out against rape and to teach their sons that ‘no’ means ‘no’ – and ‘unconscious’ means ‘call 911’ or get medical help.”

• “As a parent, it’s important to teach your children the difference between right and wrong. It’s also important to teach your children accountability.”

• “I think I speak for all Stanford swimming alumni when I say that in hearing of this incident my first thoughts were with the victim and her family. I am deeply saddened by what happened. As a human. As a father. As a member of the Stanford swimming community.”

• “I think it’s important that the victim knows that our support, thoughts and prayers are with her.”

• “I have two teenage sons and also two very young daughters, and this event has made me think deeply about the way I raise my children, especially my sons. I speak to my children about the importance of right and wrong and the respect we must have for our own bodies and those of others.”

• “I also teach my sons that ‘no’ means ‘no,’ and the perils of drugs and alcohol, and how these influences destroy lives.”

• “I teach my children that if you hurt someone you apologize and ask for forgiveness immediately.”

But most importantly:

• “The only thing that really matters is one question, and I’d like everyone reading this to ask themselves this one question: ‘Am I an actual human being?’ Bearing in mind that human beings inherently care for each other and show empathy to each other.”

What would you say is the most important question?

What can you do to keep students safe this year?

For the entire CNN article, please click here.