Rape Crisis appalled by Capping Show

Rape Crisis Dunedin has declined to be the Otago University Students Association (OUSA) official Capping Show charity this year, saying parts of the show trivialised rape and sexual abuse.

Community education worker Heidi Cripps, who attended the opening night of last month's show, said she and her partner were upset to hear the all-male sextet singing about sexual abuse and date rape.

The collective complained the next day and said it no longer wanted to be the official charity.

Ms Cripps said she had been to Capping Shows before and knew they usually contained sexual material and references.

But she said she was shocked at the content.

Rape and sexual abuse were never funny and should not be trivialised, she said this week.

"My partner and I could not enjoy the show. We were blown away.

"Sitting in a room where people were laughing at [the songs] was probably the worst part."

OUSA president Harriet Geoghegan said the sextet was informed immediately about Ms Cripps' complaint and the offensive material was dropped.

"The sextet felt terrible. They never meant to offend anyone. They never thought it would be taken the wrong way.

"It was meant to be satirical."

The donation to the official charity selected each year did not come from show profits, Ms Geoghegan said.

In the past, the official charity received its money from donations collected from spectators at the annual capping street parade.

But since the parade ceased some years ago, charities had been given the proceeds of campus lost-property sales.

Sales had topped $1000 this year, she said.

OUSA respected Rape Crisis' decision and hoped to contribute in some other way, Ms Geoghegan said.

No decisions had yet been made on how that might happen.

Ms Cripps said Rape Crisis was happy with OUSA's response to its complaint but would have to discuss whether it would accept financial assistance from the organisation.

Ms Geoghegan said OUSA planned to ensure patrons next year were warned they might see or hear offensive material.

 

capping show

Get over what? The sextet sets did not insult a particular group in society - they minimised the seriousness of rape. Rape and sexual abuse is a serious crime and is never funny. It is not a matter of a survivor being offended or insulted it is a matter of a survivor being triggered and retraumitised - fear, panic, crisis, anger, depression are just some of the possible reactions to being triggered and retraumatised. Is it worth putting someone through this for a few laughs?

Capping Show

Get over it. The whole point of the capping show is to insult different groups in society, no one else complains and the jokes have always been border line. Don't go if you take those kind of things to heart.