Karla O'Regan: Un-Blurring the Lines

Let's talk about sex, baby!

Professor Karla O'Regan mediated a panel of five student researchers this past Thursday in front of a packed student and faculty audience. O'Regan is not only a fan of Her Campus STU, but also a part of our Campus Celebrity Panel!

What did the panel talk about you ask? Sex. Whether we know it or not, consent is an issue on campuses around the globe.

Five Panelists (pictured below) from different areas of study had one thing in common last night – they don't want consent to be a taboo issue.

From definitions of terms that students should know like sexual assault, revenge porn and rape culture, to their consent video that launched last night (you can find here), this panel was all about seeing change on campus. Especially with the way we talk about sex.

"You need to consent every step of the way," says Hannah Barrett. "From the first touch to the last touch of any sexual encounter, you need to get consent to do what your doing. The law doesn’t care if you've been with someone for two years or two months."

"Nobody ever talks about consent," says Emily Thomas, "(or) how to negotiate it."

The talk about consent doesn't get taught in high schools alongside the usual 'Don't Have Sex' speech that we've all heard.

Barrett says the negotiation talk doesn't have to be awkward. She likened it to turning someone down for coffee. You don't just outright say no, this is what creates the awkwardness. There has to be a negotiation.

Negotiating sexual experiences can be just as easy as planning a coffee date with a friend or partner. The conversation just needs to be started.

The panel addressed the rape and hookup culture that is seen in our society and media. It's especially present in ads – the panel showed this recent viral video to make their point.

The number one offender that the panel pointed out may surprise you. Beyoncé dropped some explicit song lyrics at the Grammy's this year. In her song, Queen Bey referenced assaults on Tina Turner/Anna Mae from her husband, Ike.

The term 'kill-count' was referenced in more that one way, as if women's bodies are something to destroy. Panelist Ryan Buchanan explained the term is violent in its very nature.

Prof. O'Regan brought attention to a new campaign that launched recently in Canada. Called 'Yes Means More' it’s about how there is a different between consent and saying yes.  

If you or anyone you know may have been involved in a sexual assault, or you would like more information on the subject, please visit The Fredericton Sexual Assault Crisis Centre.