SGA approves funding for self-defense keychains


Officer Pamela Christian demonstrates to student government how to use the Kubaton self defense key chain. (Photo courtesy Michael Rogers)

By Michael Rogers

The Student Government Association wants to equip students with self-defense keychains meant to ward off attackers, but some students are questioning the purchase.

SGA has agreed to spend $535 to pay for 100 Kubatons for participants in the university’s Rape Aggression Defense Program (R.A.D.), which focuses on teaching women to protect themselves. TCU also offers Resisting Aggression with Defense (R.A.D.), which teaches men steps to avoid aggressive behavior.

The pointed sticks, typically aluminum, are five to six inches long and can be used to fight off potential attackers.

TCU Crime Prevention Officer Pam Christian demonstrated that if a person is being held from behind, she could swing an arm forward and with her backswing hit the attacker in the groin area.

Some students questioned whether the keychains were a good buy.

“Those funds would be better used in advertising for the program and equipping more people with the skills to defend themselves,” said Sarah Nichols, a junior economics and communications double major.

Lauren Fisher, a junior communications major, suggested, “the money could go towards more courses. It could also go towards getting more people involved in the program and promoting it more.”

But Abbey Widick, SGA vice president of operations, said it’s important to collaborate with TCU police and its effort to empower students and help them feel safe.

R.A.D., which has been offered on campus since 1996, teaches martial arts and self-defense tactics with and without the Kubaton to help students defend themselves against assaults.

Christian said the program prepares individuals to take safety into their own hands.

Students are taught to resist the attacker for as long as they can and to do the unexpected — which includes erratic behavior, uncontrollable laughing, or acting like an animal to deflect the attacker’s advances.

R.A.D. classes are offered once a semester through the TCU Police Department and sign up is available online through the department’s website.