Scholarship News

International Men’s Day Cancelled Following University Male Student’s Suicide


November 19, 2015
by Susan Dutca-Lovell
 According to Breitbart news, a 21-year old student at the U.K.'s University of York committed suicide 24 hours before the university's cancellation of International Men's Day. After 200 feminist campaigners, students, staff and alumni expressed their fury over a professor's comments about International Men's Day, the university decided to not observe the November 19 holiday and instead continue to focus on inequalities faced by women. Though students fought to reinstate IMD, the decision was not reversed.

According to Breitbart news, a 21-year old student at the U.K.'s University of York committed suicide 24 hours before the university's cancellation of International Men's Day. After 200 feminist campaigners, students, staff and alumni expressed their fury over a professor's comments about International Men's Day, the university decided to not observe the November 19 holiday and instead continue to focus on "inequalities faced by women." Though students fought to reinstate IMD, the decision was not reversed.

Monday morning at 2:30 am, police responded to a campus call for a 21-year old male who was found with life-threatening injuries. Allegedly, the male student committed suicide for unknown reasons. The student's name has not been disclosed and few details were reported regarding the incident. Breitbart reported the death notice through an anonymous tip-off from an angry university student, who viewed the university's IMD decision as a "downplay of the seriousness of men's health."

Despite the recent suicide and the alarming male suicide rate in the U.K., the university did not reinstate the event. Some Twitter users have voiced their disapproval in York's action and some tweeted they would no longer apply to the university because "it discriminates against men," attaching statistics about mental health, education, and employment. U.K. organizers of IMD report that 13 men commit suicide each day. In 2013, 78% of male suicides "within the most vulnerable age group between 45 and 59." The percentage of U.K. men taking their own lives is at an all-time high. The university has not addressed the suicide incident, and this suicide, along with other male suicides, received little to no attention.

What exactly is International Men's Day? IMD was created in the 1960's to raise awareness for "men's health, improve gender relations and promote gender equality." Based on recent events, men's mental health, along with other common issues, are being pushed further despite IMD's attempt to raise awareness and promote gender equality. Do recent events highlight a need to observe men's issues such as physical health, mental health, rape, and domestic violence - issues that all people, men included, struggle with and do not gain sufficient attention? How do you think this affects gender equality? Share your thoughts below, and start a discussion.

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Zcasavant  on  6/15/2016 6:51:16 PM commented:

Haha, wow! Scratch that school off my list. NOOOPE!!! I bet they regret that decision.

Joey C.  on  11/24/2015 10:21:56 PM commented:

It's incredibly insulting as a woman who has been raped, abused, and overall treated like garbage because I'm a woman (they told me that's why they were treating me like garbage, it wasn't like I was assuming) my WHOLE life, watching men in the same position as me get more respect than me simply because I have **[censored]**, then saying that a holiday celebration being cancelled is discrimination. We SHOULD get rid of it. Replace it with "International Bring Down The Patriarchy Day". That would help bring attention to REAL men's issues (like the rising suicide rate, health concerns, rape/abuse, etc) and not fictional issues MRAs are convinced exist, like "the domination of women". Btw, not actually a thing.\r\nWomen are not a special interest group. We are not a "minority" in population, only in status. Canceling it after the professor's comments was not "appeasing" some small group of people. This is helping acknowledge more than half the population of the world.

Anne H.  on  11/24/2015 10:11:26 PM commented:

I think men face their own kind of descrimination in the way everyone expects them to act a certain way (tough). Yes, women face a lot of descrimination, but that doesn't mean we should beat down everything men want to do. It's about men's health anyway; think of all the good men (fathers, brothers, friends, etc.) that we do wish good health.

Dwight S.  on  11/24/2015 8:01:33 PM commented:

So, let me get this straight...the university cancelled a long-standing tradition that supports noble causes like men's health issues, improving gender relations and promoting gender equality? Is this what we really want? I have a son and a daughter, and both find this equally appalling.

Jill D.  on  11/24/2015 5:54:48 PM commented:

I think there should be an International Men's Day for sure. They are just as good as caregivers as women, if not better. My Father is the one who raised me. My mother was moody and never wanted me around. My mother was jealous of me. My Father saved my life. some of my hairdressers and doctors were men!!!! Men are terrific!!!!!!

abdikaadir huseen  on  11/22/2015 11:26:46 AM commented:

I want free schoolarship i havent any mony

Hunter M.  on  11/19/2015 9:06:57 PM commented:

It can be understood why international Men's day has brought controversy over it's validity and how it's quality to be viewed as offensive to a miniory would provoke the elimination of the holiday, but if the populace attempts to appease the opinions of all it's units, then they will continue to do so until little to acknowledge without being viewed as offensive will exsist. So for this reason the preservation of holidays such as black history month, Dr. Martin Luther King Day, Veteran's Day, Women's Day, and countless others are essential to maintain the acceptance of many cultures views instead of the gradual decay of these holidays until there are little left because a small group views it as offensive. In a nation that is a cultural melting pot people will always be offended by one thing or another, and if Men's day becomes only a memory in American history, how long until thanksgiving and Christmas are as well?

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