UNC students protest 'Country Night' because...sexism
Students at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (UNC) are once again “speaking out against what they see as sexist admission practices" in university bars.
UNC senior and local disc jockey, Trevor Dougherty, is at the forefront of the fight for gender equality at bars and clubs, helping to organize a silent protest of "sexist bar policies and rape culture at UNC."
According to the event’s Facebook page, the September 16th protest served as “a group performance that will etch confusion...and hopefully understanding...into the minds of the uninitiated.”
“TO DO SO, a dress code of EXTREME RESISTANCE is recommend Silent Protest, ed,” the event’s page declares. “Think revolutionary. Think long and flowy [sic], colorful and bright. Think ANYTHING BUT your regular tshirt [sic] and shorts. Bring a scarf to tie around your mouth like a feminist bandit. Since we won't be speaking or shouting, our eyes will do the talking. If you have something to say, gather your thoughts/words carefully and write them on a sign.”
As Campus Reform previously reported, Dougherty fought to end ladies’ nights at local bars with fellow DJ, Rob Sekay, because the two believe that the marketing strategy “objectified women.”
The silent protesters stood across the street from the local bar, Deep End, during its weekly “Country Night” and condemned the five dollar difference in admission rates. Students 21-and-up pay three dollars each. Women 18-20 years old pay five dollars; men in the same age bracket pay ten dollars.
“It perpetuates the culture that undervalues women and treats women as sexual objects,” Dougherty told The Daily Tar Heel.
“The main argument we have is this practice of ladies nights or unequal admission commodifies women by basically bringing guys out for a higher price and guaranteeing that more women will be there because of their lower price,” he said.
Howard McDonald, the owner of Deep End bar, says the admission rates have nothing to do with attracting men to the bar with a feeder pool of women.
“Typically it’s an industry standard, underage guys are the worst thing for the bar—they’re more destructive, we have to kick them out more and they get alcohol more,” said McDonald. “We have more problems from underage guys than from any other part of our business.”
However, Dougherty is optimistic about the group’s new silent approach.
“It’s different because we’re going to be quiet,” said Dougherty. “It’s just going to be a very simple statement of we’re watching and we don’t approve. And I think it’s going to be much more powerful than us all shouting.”
Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @MaggieLitCRO