Alexis Jones spreads love, forgiveness
When Alexis Jones was leaving the locker room after giving a presentation about respecting each other as humans, she overheard a man tell his friend that “she wouldn’t have talked so much with his d*** in her mouth.”
Instead of reacting in anger, she told him she knew it was not his fault that he felt that way and asked who hurt him.
The next instant, he was looking at the ground sobbing as he admitted that his mother had walked out of his family when he was four.
This type of occurrence happens over and over for Jones, founder of Protect Her and I Am That Girl.
The forgiveness and understanding she expressed was the basis of her presentation Thursday night in Willa Cather’s Red Cloud Room.
According to Jones, “radical forgiveness is the only way forward” from this society in which every person is hiding his or her insecurities.
Jones’ Protect Her program began as a way to educate male athletes in professional locker rooms about respecting women. Quickly, it spread and now athletes, politicians and Hollywood stars are now required to participate in its training.
However, Jones did not enter the room ready to scold the audience for needing to treat each other with more love and respect.
“You can’t give what you don’t have,” Jones said.
Jones began her talk by asking if she could be open and vulnerable with the audience. When the audience gave her the right of way, she continued to discuss her own insecurities and then challenged the audience to think of their own.
She asked, “do you love you?” and admitted that is a very confrontational question.
This is a similar practice to what she does in the locker rooms she is hired to speak in. She asks the players “who are you when you take off the jersey?”
Throughout Jones’ presentation, she allowed herself to dig deep within herself to admit some tough things.
“I was a poor kid at a rich kid school,” she said of her insecurities. “In college, I would make jokes, ‘don’t eat a hamburger around me, I might kill you for it! But I had been hungry since I was 14.”
Jones began modeling when she was a young teen and claimed she was hungry throughout her life because of it.
But, she was able to put on a mask and pretend her life was perfect.
It was not until a girl from her Spanish class called her on it that she realized what she was doing.
“I felt like a fraud,” Jones said.
From there, Jones decided to speak up for what she believes in- human rights.
To Jones, the word is not fair to anyone.
She claims that “it is not just women’s problems or men’s problems we’re dealing with. It’s human problems.”
She said that throughout her life and her experience with talking to athletes and others about respecting themselves and others, she has learned that people “don’t have to walk around like comatose Barbie and Ken dolls.”
To bring change to the world, Jones invited the crowd to be remarkable. She expressed her goal of redefining what it means to be a man and how to believe women matter in ways outside of classic masculinity and impossible definitions of beauty.
Jones’ speech was well-received online.
— EVELYN (@kosalkaevelyn) March 30, 2018
The program was put together by the University Programming Council and, although the crowd left many open seats, those that did attend seemed to respond well to what Jones had to say.
Went to see Alexis Jones speak and it may have been the best speech I have seen all school year.
— Robert Hutchinson (@Hutch_68) March 30, 2018
Finishing the presentation, Jones told the audience that she loves what she does because she “preaches for the one.”
“I was traveling for 251 days last year,” she said. “I was away from my husband and some great sex because I believe so fiercely in having conversations and I believe there is nothing more powerful than having conversations.”