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Opinion: PSU Democrats weigh in on WPH

Originally published on @psudems on Instagram

Oscar Lackwicz


Pres. PSU Democrats


The Plymouth State University Democrats stand with the student body in strongly opposing any attempts to shut down an event catered to the empowerment of women. Shutting down Women’s Power Hour would be a tremendous disservice to the student body, and would undermine the continuous efforts made to promote gender equality, equity, and inclusivity on campus.

In a broad scope, Title IX serves to ensure the protection and safety of one’s gender, and that no harassment or discrimination comes because of it. On campus, and especially in this context, these protections extend to the women utilizing the valuable amenity that is Women’s Power Hour. As an organization, PSU Dems wants to see more of these amenities, programs devoted to facilitating safe spaces for women and non-binary people.

Women’s only spaces are not discriminatory. There has been much discussion around the argument of “if there is a Women’s Power Hour” there should be a “Men’s Power Hour,” recently on social media. These comments seem to miss the point. A Men’s Power Hour is not vital because that is every other hour in the gym. The existence of Woman’s Power Hour responds to the sad reality and historical context of sexism, sexual assault and harassment in our society. Too often women feel objectified in a traditional gym setting. These spaces foster a safe and supportive community. We should be working towards having more of them, not ripping down the ones we have. 

Plymouth has always been a school devoted to creating spaces for women. What was once a campus mainly for women, citing Plymouth Normal School who provided the women of New England with the tools they needed to enter the workforce as educators, has now become a beautifully diverse community that respects and values the place women have held. Utilizing Title IX in an inappropriate manner, attempting to backslide the historic progress Plymouth has made for women on this campus will not be tolerated.

Moving forward, PSU Dems plan to advocate for more of these women-protected spaces, ensuring that women on campus remain seen, respected, and represented. Not only will ensuring the permanency of Women’s Power Hour enforce everything Plymouth stands for as a university, but it will serve as an important fixture on why these safe spaces work. The women of PSU are not going away anytime soon, and it is our job as a community to ensure this progress towards equity and equality sticks around for a long time.