The Colorado Springs swim club has come under fire after its members began refusing to use the term “rape” in their public messages.
The Colorado Post reports that members have been making the statement in a variety of ways, including calling for the expulsion of their current president, who has been charged with felony rape of a minor.
“Rape is not a word that can be used in public,” said the president, whom the Colorado Rapids Daily News identified as Chris Cogman.
“If you don’t use the word rape, I will get you fired.”
The president’s comments drew swift condemnation from a range of members, including the club’s board of directors.
“This is a dangerous place to be,” board member Joe Rios told the Colorado Post.
“We are a place where we should all work together.”
The club’s decision to use a word other than “rape,” however, has drawn some backlash from both supporters and critics.
In a recent post on the club site, members called the move “unfortunate” and “a waste of money” and urged the board to reconsider.
“Our motto is ‘swim with the wild.’
We do not tolerate the use of the word ‘rape’ in any way, shape, or form,” they wrote.
“That is why we refuse to use that word and continue to swim.”
Colorado Rapids City Councilmember Bill Smith, who chairs the board of the Colorado Swim Club, told the newspaper that he had heard complaints from members who were offended by the use.
“They have said that they don’t feel safe in the water.
They say that they feel unsafe in the club.
We need to listen to that, because it is a problem we have had with the club,” Smith said.
“It is not acceptable for the swimming club to be in this position of not using the word.”
“This type of behavior is not the way to run a swimming club.
It is not going to be tolerated,” he added.