It wasn’t Dorothy tapping her sparkly red shoes together Saturday in the Mission Plaza.
Instead, men of the San Luis Obispo community exchanged their sneakers for high heels in advocacy of Respect, Inspire, Support and Empower’s (RISE) 14th annual “Walk a Mile in Her Shoes.”
Local residents and Cal Poly students — including a strong presence from greek life — walked a mile around the downtown area in high heels to raise awareness about sexual assault and gender relations.
“This is definitely putting things into perspective,” business administration freshman Alex Meurer said. “Girls have much stronger ankles than I do, and that’s not debatable. I came out today to spread awareness about sexual assault and help stop it.”
“My foot’s killing me,” business administration senior Jeff Levy (above) said.
“They’re a lot harder to walk in than I thought,” food and crop science junior Zach Johnson said. “I definitely give credit to girls wearing these things.”
“I came to support sexual assault awareness month and to get a better perspective on women’s safety and stop the objectification of women based on what they wear,” business administration alumnus Evan Razor (above) said. “By being here, I am raising awareness about these issues to stop sexual violence.”
“It’s a really good cause,” mechanical engineering junior Spencer Davis (above) said. “I’ve got a sister and every man should be supporting this cause and be more equitable to women. No one should feel unsafe. These heels are new. I’m breaking them in, they’re not as bad as everyone’s making them (out) to be. My legs look great, too. I feel like a baby deer learning to walk. It’s way harder to stay standing still than to walk in.”
“It’s a little bit more uncomfortable than I thought it would be,” political science sophomore Kyle Kelly said. “I’ll never tell a girl to hurry up again. I came out to show support for this issue. I work in the Safer office, so it’s good to have representation and be here in solidarity with women.”
“My toes are tender,” construction management freshman Peter Bronge said. “I came out today to raise awareness for a cause that is a part of many of our lives.”
“It was hard,” San Luis Obispo resident Edgar Cardona said. “Now I understand my sister. It’s important to create more vision of how different society will be without abuse and violence no matter the gender — it affects everyone.”