The co-founder of the group A Call to Men says men need to step up in the fight against domestic violence and sexual assault. Ted Bunch will speak Wednesday, October 2, at a summit on the issue in Kalamazoo.
Bunch says most men want to do the right thing but don't know how.
"Most violence against women is perpetrated by men but most men are not violent. But we are silent about the violence other men perpetrate, and that silence is as much of the problem as the violence is."
Bunch says violence against women won't end until men embrace what he calls a "healthy, respectful manhood."
"The way we define healthy, respectful manhood is a number of things: to fully express our full range of emotions and allow our boys to do the same; to not say things that denigrate women and girls or other marginalized groups; don't feel the need to always be in charge, always have to make every decision, always be in control."
Bunch says finding ways to end violence against women, including sexual assault, should be as important to men as it is to women.
"We've been conditioned not to see this as a man's problem. Domestic violence and sexual assault has always been seen as a women's problem because women have been at the forefront of addressing the issue. But it really is not going to end unless men become part of the primary efforts to end it."
Bunch will give the keynote address at the forum Wednesday. It is sponsored by the Kalamazoo County YWCA, the Kalamazoo County Prosecutor's Office, Western Michigan University, and several community groups. Registration begins Wednesday, October 2, at 7:30 a.m. at the Delta Marriott Conference Center near Stadium Drive and US 131. The program will start at 8:30. Bunch's address will be at midday.