Poetry club causes debate on campus

Poetry Club President Loki Freeman, 27, philosophy, left, talks about religion in the free-speech quad with all the students that will take the time to listen. (Oliver Yu)

Carmen Ulloa

The Poetry Club presented its subject of feminism, drawing a colorful crowd to the Student Services Center quad last Wednesday.

The workshop opened with a welcome speech by Kim Bridges, 20, literature.

“I was born in Mission Viejo Hospital on Apr. 24, 1990,” Bridges said. “Ever since, I’ve been living life as a person labeled F opposed to M.”

Bridges, who works at a local golf course, insisted that carrying golf bags gives her an opportunity to probe strength and gender equality, and she wishes to be allowed such space.

Bridges spoke about some of the difficulties of performing daily duties at work due to her gender.

“Everyday there will be at least one man who’ll refuse to let me carry his bag because I am a woman,” she said.

Thomas Monroe, 27, world religion, president of the Poetry Club, has been presiding the group since last fall.

Monroe promotes feminism to evoke an emotional response from young women. “[Young women] who appear to be starving in order to conform to a media promoted body image,” Monroe said.

Monroe believes sex is used in advertising relentlessly and is used to sell anything from mouthwash to running shoes.

He also encourages women to pursue leadership roles in every area of society and to demand equal pay and recognition.

Promoting polyamory, an open form of romantic relationship in which couples agree to have multiple partners who are not sexually exclusive, was also suggested as an alternative to the old idea of a wife as property of her husband.

Monroe also considers social norms and traditions to have reinforced inequality and wants to challenge them.

“I hope we can propose ideas of positive body image independent of media influence, polyamory, political and religious freedom,” he said.

Some of his ideas were immediately challenged and argued by some members of the Compass Bible Church. They were promoting religious teachings and, with the “Bible” in hand, heatedly demanded facts, evidence and answers to questions regarding his statements.

The Poetry Club stakes out its booth every weekday in the quad, and puts on these events on most Wednesdays. The next workshop will be held Feb. 2 where they will host “Celebrate Black Poetry.”

For more information about the Poetry Club and its upcoming events, e-mail saddlebackpoetry@yahoo.com.

Poetry Club President Loki Freeman, 27, philosophy, left, exchange dialogue with fellow students Taylor Verret, 18, undecided, Kyle Johnson, 19, business administration, and Chinh Nguyen, 19, business management. (Oliver Yu)