Clark Hall response positive, but after-the-fact training only goes so far

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The actions following the insensitive tip jars at Clark Hall were reasonable and quick — it’s just disappointing that these actions were needed in the first place.

During Friday Ritual at Clark Hall on Nov. 11, two tip jars were set up at the bar. One was labeled “grabbing her by the pussy” while the other was labeled “grabbing her by the feelings.” They played off Donald Trump’s comments about women in a video from 2005 that resurfaced during his presidential campaign. 

Clark Hall management issued an apologetic statement condemning the jars and acknowledging the toxic message they presented, after it was brought to attention by a patron of the pub. They invited students to engage in discussion and are ensuring that all current staff members undergo sensitivity training.

Their response to the message on the jars was textbook — they handled the issue exactly as was expected of them. It’s the fact that we’re still having this conversation that’s disappointing.

Regardless of how the issue is handled once it unfolds, the question still remains about why it happened to begin with. It seems that sensitivity training is the go-to way to deal with insensitive actions occurring, but maybe we need to find a different way of trying to make sure it doesn’t happen to begin with. 

With that said, Clark Hall handled the issue how they should have. This is an opportunity for others to learn how to respond when faced with sensitive issues like this one.

—Journal Editorial Board 

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