Men in high heels march to end violence against women

Emily Kukulies
Emily Kukulies
Michael Ferguson
Michael Ferguson
Ikaika Ariola
Ikaika Ariola

By Roger Mari - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) - A group of men participating in a unique event on Oahu today might have looked funny but, their intention was to raise awareness about a serious subject:  ending violence against women.

It was a class act among male students and faculty at Honolulu Community College as they walked on campus wearing women's high heeled shoes.

These men were definitely pumped up to address domestic violence against women.  They participated in an event called "Walk a Mile in Her Shoes."

It started on the mainland and has grown each year, finally making it to Oahu.

"You want a way to bring men and women and people of different ages and backgrounds together to talk about a topic and to get them to discuss it for the very first time," said event organizer Emily Kukulies.

Although the walk was not quite one mile, it was long enough for these men to feel the true pain of wearing high heels.

"I had to sway my hips a little more when I was walking, now my calves are sore, I got a good work out," said H.C.C. instructor Michael Ferguson.

For some, it's a small price to pay if it drives home the point that assaulting women will not be tolerated.

"The pain that we're feeling now is nothing compared to what women feel when they get beat up.  If I can take some pain off their shoulders, I would do this a thousand times," said H.C.C. student Ikaika Ariola.

One of the participants leading the way in his borrowed black high-heels is chemistry instructor Michael Ferguson.

"I know several women who I'm very close with who have been assaulted sexually and so I feel very strongly about this," said Michael Ferguson.

It's an event that allows these bold men to let everyone know that ending violence against women is taking a step in the direction.

H.C.C. plans on doing this walk every year. Hawaii Pacific University and the University of Hawaii at Manoa also plan on following in their footsteps.