Monday, September 15, 2008

Can I Kiss You? -NV

At Loyola College's Mcguire Hall, I attended "Can I Kiss You?" This was a lecture by Mike Domritz, a man who wrote a book about this discussion, and promotes sexual respect and choice throughout many highschools and colleges in our area. The discussion itself was a very deep and moving experience. The main question of the discussion was- why is it important to give people a choice when it comes to sexuality or intimacy? Why do we avoid asking, "Can I Kiss You?" The answer is simply because we are afraid...afraid of rejection, being awkward or uncool, or plainly because we do not carry the confidence to ask.
The most important thing that the Domritz encouraged and inspired was choice. Everyone, no matter what religion, ethnicity, race, or gender, deserve a choice. Choice, to Domritz, refers to being part of a decision before it occurs. The lecture encouraged people to give that choice to their partner. Most people have never experienced a time when they were asked if they wanted to do something. Those who never ask don't do it because they think they will look idiotic, or come off as a "dork." This is a horrible perception for teenagers, but the fact is, most people are afraid to ask because they have never seen it being done. Many may expect that their partner wants the same things as they do, when in reality they want nothing of that nature. However, by asking, you show that you respect yourself and you respect your partner. If you are rejected, respect that answer!
"Can I Kiss You?" also brought up the subject of rape. Mike Domritz brought up a scenario where teenagers are at a party. He explains that one of your friends is purposly trying to get another one of your friends drunk. He is doing this so that he can take advantage of her. You see him mixing and pouring several drinks for her, when he has only had about two to drink. Clearly, she is more intoxicated than he is. This is a set up for a rape scene. Domritz explains that even though you see this happening, no one goes up to try and stop him. You don't do this because you are afraid of what he will do to you or simply because you would never believe that he would rape her. However, when your male friends grabs his keys to walk out the door, you stop him right away. You obviously do not want him driving drunk, and will do anything to stop this. Most of the population would say that the two worse crimes are murder and rape. Why is it that you would not stop him when he intentially was going to rape someone, but you stopped him right away when he would accidently kill another. The way our generation works is not right. The discussion encourages us to stand up for what is right. We have lost our respect for others and for our own peers.
The discussion was very encouraging, and it related deeply to the understanding of a Jesuit Institution. Mike Domritz explained how most of the schools that hire him to speak are Jesuit institutions or of some related religion. The Jesuit teachings encourage respect among everyone; this is, if not the first, one of the most important aspects of the Jesuit idea. This discussion was built around the idea of respect, and how one should view sexuality or intimacy with another. In the reading, we learn about the promotion of Jesuit education and how it was accomplished through the 32nd General Congregation. It explains that its main purpose was to promote service and justice; "The overriding purpose of the Society of Jesus, namely 'the service of faith,' must also include 'the promostion of justice'" (Kolvenbach 23). We cannot promote justice without having respect for one another. "Can I Kiss You" embodied the Jesuit teaching because it advanced the ideas of giving others a choice. This allows each partner to have an equal part in the decision, and equality embodies justice.

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