Sex Week at Yale promotes hypocritical image

According to the Sex Week At Yale Web site, one purpose of the week is “to challenge students’ conceptions of sex and sexuality and question the way sex is presented in our society.” This is a worthy goal, and it deserves a week’s worth of attention. However, we question the way Sex Week at Yale chooses to do so.

Take, for example, the table tents that were distributed throughout the college dining halls. They featured a provocative silhouette of a slim, model-like figure, supposedly tossing her head back in the passion of the moment. Behind this image was the schedule of events, which included “The Female Orgasm” and “Mating Intelligence.”

Given the goal of broadening the conversation, we assume the SWAY coordinators would want all of Yale College to feel comfortable attending panels like these. But by mimicking the “flawless” figures of Victoria’s Secret models, Sex Week implicitly promotes the exclusivity of sex to a single body type.

These images send a message: Sex belongs to hot, skinny girls. They are having lots of great sex. If you aren’t, it’s probably because you don’t look like they do. Rather than questioning the way sex is presented in our society, Sex Week’s advertising seems to propagate this stereotypical presentation.

Midway through the Sex Week magazine is a seven-page spread of heavily made up, nearly naked Yale models. The magazine’s editors clearly attempted to incorporate diversity into the photo shoot by including models of many races, but ignored a larger picture of what diversity means, especially with regards to sexuality.

The pictures capture a non-variety of slim bodies in suggestive poses. The photo shoot pointedly suggests that sex at Yale happens just like sex in the movies. The girls are thin, provocatively dressed, and spend enough time putting on makeup that it warrants capturing on film. Even the male couple needs a cowboy hat to make the cut — does gay sex only happen on Brokeback Mountain?

There are substantive, valuable articles buried in the magazine, but the mindless, over-glossed presentation overwhelms whatever interesting pieces the publication might contain. And this is pretty much how Sex Week’s entire marketing plan works.

The coordinators seem to be so obsessed by the goal of getting attention that they ignore their own professed goals and dumb down an incredibly rich and multi-faceted topic. This is not to say that the week shouldn’t be fun. Debates about pornography and forums on sex toys both have places in the wider circles of sexuality that Yalies should be discussing.

Unfortunately, Sex Week at Yale misses its prime opportunity by failing to challenge contemporary depictions of sex in the media and entertainment industries. SWAY organizers have written, “We strive to get beyond … the discomfort … of conventional sex education programs by treating sexual behavior as the reality it is, not as it has been portrayed.”

But the coordinators seem uncomfortable with the idea that non-models are engaged in sexual activities, so much so that their marketing totally ignores this reality. In doing so, they promote discomfort in the wider, more diverse range of sexual individuals that make up our community. There is no reason that Sex Week’s advertising couldn’t incorporate a more realistic portrayal of what sexuality means. SWAY coordinators have expressed concern that fewer students would attend events if they were under the header of a less attention grabbing “Sexual Awareness Week.” This misses the point entirely. It is not the name of the event that causes problems, but the image it tries to cultivate.

Sex Week at Yale puts so much energy into grabbing student attention that it sacrifices the underlying themes and goals it professes for itself.

We hope and expect that in the future, Sex Week at Yale will paint a broader portrait of sexual reality, because, in doing so, it has the power to open a more mature and frank discussion about the important issue of sexuality.

Virginia Calkins is a sophomore in Pierson College. Callie Lowenstein is a sophomore in Davenport College.

Comments

  • SM 98

    The real question is, is Sex Week going to be followed by Abortion Week six weeks later? Does anybody have a clue that you are engaging in REPRODUCTION and might even succeed? Birth control fails. THINK, before you're crying in your dorm room trying to talk yourself into the liberation of killing your own child.

  • life, liberty and morality

    How about healthy sex belongs only in marriage? Now that is message our culture doesn't often promote.

  • Puerility

    "Virginia Calkins"

    Does no one else find this contextually rather amusing?

    But seriously: as I get older I grow more bemused/dissatisfied/upset with the casual way "sex" is treated at Yale. It cheapens everything and makes more difficult true and meaningful marital relations (of course, Yale dismisses marriage out of hand…)

  • Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happniess

    <i>How about healthy sex belongs only in marriage? Now that is message our culture doesn't often promote.-life libterty, morality</i>

    Because it's not realistic.

    I guess a few people up top are just mad because they haven't had any luck with getting anyone. Sex is a choice. You choose whether or not to have it. Let's know how to have safer sex and reduce the chances of birth control failing by using contraception. A novel idea!

  • Anonymous

    You guys could go to the events instead of complaining.

    Dr. Ruth argued that any type of sex should only take place in a strong relationship or marriage and that people should only do what their morals/values tell them to do.

    The SWAY directors have done a tremendous job. Make your case, but don't get angry if no one agrees with you.

  • Anonymous

    I assume all the wacky reactions about the evils of premarital sex are coming from people who haven't been paying attention. What do you think Sex Week is, a week-long, university funded orgy? The view that sex should be reserved for marriage is a welcome and reasonable one in the discussion, but to leap from there to attacking the discussion encouraged by sex week is not.

    Props to the article itself; glad I'm not alone thinking this way.

  • anti-SWAY

    It's so simple: first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby.

    We have rejected that norm for far too long and it is decimating our society.

    SWAY is pretty crappy in general- boring, mediocre talks by self-important sociologists. The organizers try to hype it up like a week long orgy, but the reality is much more tedious and pedantic.

  • Postcoed Old Blue

    This piece is, well, sophomoric. Fitting I suppose for the class of its authors.

    Your complaint about the week is that the promotional materials use physically attractive people as their models? You think it would be better if some pictures of overweight people were used? Seriously? Car salesmen say you gotta gete the customers on the lot before you can sell them a car.

    Oh, by the way, sorry you got traffic in the comments from Pro-Life Action League.

  • life, liberty and morality

    I agree with Puerility that removing all ethical and moral consideration from sex has cheapened it and removed some of the more interesting aspects of it.

    Casual sex with its accompaniments of birth control, abortion, and no-strings encourages young men to not feel protective towards young women as they once did. Also, they often do not feel any connection to their female partners beyond the bedroom. The young women, by and large, tend to feel a strong connection that is painfully not reciprocated.

    Someday you will learn that good sex is about a much deeper emotional and spiritual connection connect between people. Sex week embraces the PC myth that men and women are interchangeable and that gender differences are taught rather than innate. It refuses to address the different emotional reactions of men and women to casual sex and is thus misleading and ultimately harmful to young women.

    For reasons I don't quite understand young women are encouraged to embrace the basest aspects of some male sexuality in the name of liberty. Reality will catch with you all one (unfortunately painful) day.

  • Anonymous

    There's a difference between overweight and not-ridiculously-skinny.

    Not understanding the distinction is one problem our society could stand to solve.

  • Remember his victims!!!

    "I was a normal person. I had good friends. I led a normal life, except for this one, small but very potent and destructive segment that I kept very secret and close to myself.
    ….
    There are those loose in their towns and communities, like me, whose dangerous impulses are being fueled, day in and day out, by violence in the media in its various forms - particularly sexualized violence."

    Ted Bundy
    before his execution in 1989 regarding his addiction to pornography.

  • Mad Mom

    I told you as a child not to talk to strangers in the parks and malls so to protect you from pedophiles (aka "registered sex offenders.) Later I warned of the dangers of, what I call, the dark side of the Internet.
    Now the university, you worked so hard to get to and I pay so much for you to attend, is sponsoring a forum that normalizes the deviant behavior of the people I told you to fear.

    I'm numb from disgust.

  • LP

    I can't help but notice all the negative comments. If I want to go to hell, I'll go to hell. Just leave me be. Geez. Worry about yourself.

  • curious

    I don't mean to come across as patronizing, but isn't sex education a high school issue (student education). The students are adults. Do they need 'sex week' to educate themselves?

  • deeply offended

    #9, don't presume that Yalies know nothing about deep, committed relationships. People tend to forget about the prevalence of "married" couples on campus and focus on the more casual side of Yale sexual culture, let alone the people who somehow maintain long-distance relationships.

    I'm appalled by your sexist views about how we react emotionally to sex. (For the record, saying that gender differences are taught rather than innate is a tautology. Gender differences are taught, differences of sex are biological.) Who's to say that I, as a man, don't feel a strong bond with my sexual partners?

    Also, "young men feeling protective towards young women"? Women can take care of themselves just fine, thanks.

    I can only hope that your child's views are more enlightened than yours.

  • inno

    @LP:
    ditto. I'll have my hell with two servings of orgasm, please.

  • Anonymous

    Have to say I've never seen porn stars or sex toy saleswomen compared to pedophiles. Lovely analogy. Sheesh.

  • Anonymous

    I thought this was a great article. Sorry the crazed pro-lifers trampled all over this in the comments section.

    @ Mad Mom - I feel as though your comment is an example of the type of dangerously ignorant mindsets SWAY is trying (although perhaps not succeeding, although that's a different debate) to correct. I'm not quite sure why you're convinced that SWAY promotes pedophilia. As far as I can tell, it's about promoting normal, healthy sex between consenting adults. And that kind of sex is NOT something to be ashamed of. It's ridiculous that we're taught from a young age that sex is something to be feared and kept secret. Whether or not you decide to wait for marriage should be irrelevant - choosing to wait doesn't mean you can't still be sexually well informed and self aware.

  • Mad Mom rebuttal

    #18
    I have at least 30 years of life experience over you and was a college student in the '70s - and, yes, it was a lot like the TV show.
    Thank gawd, I'm not there to sit through Sex Week @ Yale but have read the promotional material and web-site which both dump a lot of ink worshiping pornography and casual sex yet give little time to others points of view. (One blog post stressed the importance of establishing, prior to date one, how you feel about oral sex. Wouldn’t a better question be, “Is your Herpes in remission?”)

    As you said, isn’t sex education for high school? Agreed. I see nothing in this program that prepares you to be a better productive citizen. I see much that could put your futures in peril:

    #1) People are fired in the workplace for viewing pornography yet your university is glorifying the stars and producers. #2) I know 3 young women who are now infertile because of HPV and they didn’t get it from their husbands. #3) I know another family whose 19 year-old is now a registered sex offender due to his addiction to pornography that began at the age of 14 and was then arrested at 18 for Internet transmissions.

    A few weeks ago, this site debated whether a fraternity prank was free speech or sexual harassment. The site was full of legal opinions from Yale alums. The opportunities to sue the university seem much more “fertile” with SWAY.

    The feminist complaints about SWAY are shallow compared to what they would have been before their beloved Bill Clinton normalized the degrading of women sexually.

    IJS

  • Postcoed (70's) Old Blue

    I too have 30 plus years of life experience over #18 and my views are much closer to hers than yours. I'm sure you would find me as hopelessly libertine as I would find you fossilized. Lady, the premarital sex genie has been out of the bottle for decades. You and your comrades are not going to put it back in.

    Sex education in high school is largely a joke, some plumbing and disease information and that's it. It has been limited in that way by people like you who think that information about sex should never be discussed openly in polite society.

    Another news bulletin for you: not everything that is presented in extra-curricular programs at college has to be something that "prepares you to be a better productive citizen". Having an enjoyable, fulfilling and safe sex life makes life a richer experience, sort of like enjoyment of wine but much more important. Would you ban wine tasting seminars, too?

    Your numbered topics are completely off the point. #1 - People get fired for viewing porn at work because it's not part of the job and doing so misuses company assets. People do not get fired for viewing porn at home, as long as it's legal. #2 - HPV like other STD's should be avoided either by the new vaccine (which many of your ilk oppose because it supposedly promotes promiscuous sex) or by safer sex. Sex discussions like SWAY do emphasize safe sex. Again, advocating one mate for life is a useless crusade. #3 - The fact that law enforcement registered that kid as a sex offender for internet transmissions (was there more to that story?) is a condemnation of the sex registry system, not of wider information about sex. There are many ridiculous stories of misapplication of the registry system.

    I'm no fan of Clinton, but I fail to see how anything he did "normalized the degrading of women sexually." Perhaps it is your view that oral sex is necessarily degrading to women. Good luck selling that tripe.

    Old Blue class of '73

  • Hieronymus

    Preface: the following is mostly prompted by the comment regarding "crazed pro-lifers" trampling the comments section; no doubt, I am included in that lament. Now, on to the thought:

    Wow: #s 19 and 20 provide contrapuntal reinforcement of the thoughts of a previous poster: that men and women are affected by sexual relations in different manners. Note that the "libertine male calls the apparently regretful (or wiser) female "fossilized." Of course, he likely bears lower risks than she (and likely less reflective).

    I can trace my own Yale history back to the 80s--and, trust me, I was likely as "libertine" as any Yalie from the 70s (minus the drugs). What a target rich environment for a randy male! Now as a family man, married to a woman I have known for twenty years and with several offspring, I don't talk much about my college days; indeed, in some respects I am ashamed.

    My relationship (including the physical relationship) I share with my wife is beyond any of the "cheap and easy" stuff I had at Yale, and while it would be a lie to say that I actually regret all that "experience," it is true that none of it compares to what I have in my marriage (you know, like, emotional stuff). Further, I would be saddened if my son were to treat women the way that I was allowed/encouraged to treat them (as supposed "equals," i.e.,, with equal disregard to any emotional side effects or potential negative outcomes or long-term regrets); and I would likely hunt down and damage any boy who treated my girls the way I treated many at Yale.

    [As an aside: I cannot tell you the number of times I was assured by supposedly "liberated" women that it was "just sex," and for them to find--to their surprise and my chagrin--that it, gads!, turned out to be much more, at least for THEM.]

    But y'all believe what you want to believe. "Crazed pro-lifer?" Ha! Oh, I was a BIG BIG supporter of abortion at Yale--now, as an adult, I do not know ONE WOMAN who was not disturbed or outright damaged by her "choice" to terminate; that is, of all the women I know who admit to having had an abortion, not one takes it lightly or is not hurt or regretful.

    My wife and I, while supportive--legally speaking--of a woman's "right to choose," unequivocally reject that stance for ourselves (hence, we are de facto "crazed pro-lifers, I guess).

    I read an interesting description of Liberals & Conservatives:
    Conservatives believe human nature is unchanging and that one can look to history for important clues, i.e., there is wisdom in the ages.
    Liberals believe history to be broken, that change--sometimes for its own sake--must occur; they reject the notion of the wisdom of the ages.

    Y'all can--and will--make your own mistakes regarding sex and marriage and birth and death. Too bad many of you will refuse to listen those only slightly ahead of you on the road.

    I say again: casual sex of the type promoted--yes PROMOTED at and by Yale--only serves to cheapen true and meaningful relations between couples, and it takes time and commitment to undo the damage wrought.

    But you do what you think is best.

    Out.

  • Mad Mom continues

    "Old Blue," You made some correct and incorrect assumptions about me. So let me assume you've "enjoyed" Herpes for 30+ years and "shared" it with others. How's that goin'? I hope you support the pharmaceutical industry for providing you relief to have fewer outbreaks and more sex.
    As for Bill Clinton, it wasn’t about the kind of sex that degraded the women, it was they way he used, discarded and defamed them.

    I among others took the debate here beyond the topic of the linked article. Sadly, this is the only venue, I've seen to speak out. So can't we at least agree that SWAY might be better received if it promoted dialogue on the subject in a more balanced way. As I said, I'm not there, but the promotional material seemed very slanted and is viewed as an assault by those who simply disagree.

    Over and over again I see examples were Yale promotes openness to everything but those who might disagree. Even if in the minority, they deserve to be heard vs. run over and ridiculed by the majority.

  • Mad Mom now happy

    To the delight of several, I'm out. I can't compete with the thoughtful writings of Hieronymus #21. I'm not a Yalie but I am a y'all e. I love you for that and your commentary. Thanks for posting.

  • Postcoed (70's) Old Blue (still di

    I can only judge by what you write. I didn't say I WAS a libertine (a notion my classmates, wife of 26 years and college aged kids would find hilarious). However, I am in favor of young adult men and women having sex lives if they choose before they are married, and I am happy they are able to discuss it more openly than my or my older siblings' generation was. I assumed such an attitude would be considered libertine by someone my age who presumes to lecture college kids about casual sex with her accumulated life wisdom.

    If there are sexist aspects to the promotional literature or the week as a whole, I am confident Yale women will see it for what it is and point it out to the offenders. I have not perceived today's college women as less resilient or outspoken as were my own classmates, a pretty resilient and outspoken bunch of women.

  • a small observation

    Mom, you are so the annoying baby boomer; it kills me. You ascribe such symbolic power to Clinton, believing that his model has so strongly influenced us Gen Y-ers. Get a grip. Young people do not judge things in such black and white terms- as though something always 'promotes' something else. A sex week but helps people make informed decisions on their personal lives and choices.

  • current Yalie

    I agree. Sex Week is far more sexist and degrading to women than a "sluts" sign. They don't even discuss the alternatives such as abstinence and pro life views. It just seems to promote casual, thoughtless sex. Pornography is degrading to both women and men. It creates unrealistic views for the man about a woman's body. It puts the woman into a submissive position instead of being loved as an equal. The act of sex is reduced to nothing more than physical gratification and a tool to oppress women.

  • Recent Alum

    The problem with Sex Week is not so much that it promotes a particular view, but that if an event promotes a particular viewpoint, it shouldn't be promoted by the University itself.

    In my ideal Yale, pro-abortion groups would hold their mock abortion workshops, pro-life groups would bring in pro-life speakers, left-wing groups would bring in porn stars and porn producers to speak, conservative groups could bring in commentators to speak against homosexuality and pre-marital sex, each group would be able to advertise, all students would choose which events to go to, and the University would sponsor no particular viewpoint (but offer resources to all groups). If a liberal group wants to hold some form of Sex Week, fine, but it should be known that it doesn't represent the views of all of the Yale community.

    Yale has no place endorsing the liberal view on sexual matters, just as it would be out of place if Yale were to endorse the conservative view on sexual matters. (Imagine the outcry among the abortionists if Yale were to host "pro-life week"). I oppose the mandatory "sex ed" classes for freshmen for the same reason.

  • Anonymous

    #25, you are missing the point when it comes to Clinton. Sure, people don't judge things as "black and white" and may not consciously think that what Clinton did makes adultery acceptable. Isn't that part of the problem? What Clinton did in the Oval Office is precisely the kind of thing that should be judged on a "black and white" scale (to be precise, it would be on the black side). And for millions of Americans, this is the first thing that one thinks of when thinking of Clinton. There is no doubt in my mind that this man's actions did a great deal to promote lower moral standards among ordinary Americans. (And if Clinton wins again in 2008, we will only move further in the same direction).

  • Anonymous

    My comment is not at all relevant to the article, which made an excellent point, but rather to the comments that followed that made me pretty damn angry.

    I find it ironic that the same people championing biological sex differences and traditional gender roles in respect to sex ignore the truest and most basic biological force in humanity: the drive to procreate that begins at puberty.

    If you want to talk about biology, you'll have to give up the social constructs of marriage, romance and the "spiritual" connection of marital sex.

    I've had sex in relationships, sex with people I loved and sex casually, just for fun. I don't regret a single one. All of my varied sexual experiences have brought something to my life, in fact, they have been some of the greatest experiences of my life - and not simply with the people I was "emotionally, spirtually" bonded to.

    I have a lot of guy friends that cling desperately to relationships and become incredibly emotionally attached to their partners. I also have guy friends who just want to get laid. I know girls who fall in those two categories too (I've dabbled in both in my day.)

    The point is we're all individuals. Sex week and a sexually liberated world is about:

    FREEDOM AND INDIVIDUALITY.

    These are good things.

    And so are orgasms.

  • Fooling Herself

    #29 wrote: "I've had sex in relationships, sex with people I loved and sex casually, just for fun. I don't regret a single one. All of my varied sexual experiences have brought something to my life…"

    Indeed, according to the latest statistics, they have brought her significantly higher chances of cervical cancer, HPV, and other STDs. Some highlights:

    16JAN2008
    Nearly one-third of college-aged women who have had just one sexual partner contracted human papillomavirus within one year of becoming sexually active, according to a study to be published this week in the Journal of Infectious Diseases, the Canadian Press/CBC News reports.

    "Sexual activity and high numbers of partners are strong predictors of which women will get cervical cancer."

    "Prolonged Pill Use, Many Sex Partners May Lead to Cervical Cancer or Precursors, Studies Find"
    Family Planning Perspectives, Vol. 13, No. 1 (Jan. - Feb., 1981), pp. 45-46

    "Women who are more likely to develop Pelvic Inflammatory Disease include:
    - Women who have had a sexually transmitted disease (STD), especially gonorrhea and chlamydia.
    - Sexually active women under age 25.
    -Women who have more than one sex partner. The more sex partners a woman has, the greater her risk of getting PID. Also, if a woman's sex partner has other sex partners, her risk for PID increases."

    "The younger a girl is when she becomes sexually active, the more likely she is to experience multiple sexual partners, STDs, out of wedlock pregnancies, depression, abortion, and poverty"

    "What increases a woman's chance of Bacterial Vaginosis? Certain factors such… having new sex partners or multiple sex partners can increase a woman's risk of BV, although it's not fully understood why.

    BV can do more than just cause unpleasant symptoms. It can also increase a woman's risk of:

    becoming infected with HIV if she is exposed to the virus
    giving HIV to a sex partner (for women already infected with HIV)
    having a premature birth (for pregnant women with BV)
    having a baby with a low birth weight
    having an infection of the placenta during pregnancy
    having an infection of the womb after pregnancy
    getting a more serious infection, such as pelvic inflammatory disease, after having an IUD inserted, having a biopsy of your uterine lining, or having procedures to treat polyps, cancer, or unwanted bleeding
    becoming infected with chlamydia or gonorrhea."

    So…welcome!

  • Stop talking past the issue

    You're missing the point by continually going back to disease rates. (Also, people don't have Herpes, HPV, or AIDS from simply disagreeing with you).

    Yes, diseases are very real consequence to unsafe sex practices, but it's (extremely) beside the point of what most "lefties" are trying to make: with the facts about potential consequences in hand (that OMG SEX EDUCATION PROVIDES), people have the individual freedom to CHOOSE to accept risks and become sexually active.

    Don't want to be sexually active? Don't have sex. Don't want your kids to be sexually active? Raise them with your values, and trust that they will carry those values into their adult lives. Live and let live, people. (And no, that is NOT an opportunity to make a clever pun involving abortion statistics or anecdotes.)

    And I defend Yale for facilitating SWAY, as their resources are available equally to all students. Yale makes a bona fide effort to uphold egalitarianism; they are NOT institutionally prohibiting or stymieing a pro-abstinence, anti-sex toy, anti-PUA forum, it's just that a coherent group of students have not stepped forward to conduct such a conference. If such a group existed, they would be provided the same access to meeting spaces as SWAY receives.

  • Anonymous

    #29 Yep, you're an animal. Hamsters eat their young too. Thanks for the middle school biology lesson.

  • anon

    The posters who do not attend Yale should realize that SWAY is run by a private student group that is not at all affiliated with the administration. Just as the Yale Daily News is published by students of Yale College, but Yale College cannot be held responsible for its contents, the same goes for SWAY.

    In regards to access to meeting spaces, any student group has equal access to meeting spaces, as there is a well-established system that groups must go through to reserve rooms. The only thing that will generally keep you out of a room is if it has been previously reserved (whether it be by a class, a faculty meeting, or a fellow student group).

  • Anonymous

    #30

    Why are you just talking about women? Are men immune to STIs?

    And your point is silly. Yes if you drive, you have a higher likelihood of getting hit by a car. If you walk out in sunlight, you have a higher chance of getting skin cancer. So, of course, the most important thing is to have good quality drivers' education and teach people to wear sunscreen.

  • Recent Alum

    #33, thanks for clarifying this. If you are correct, I think that people can still justifiably express disagreement with SWAY and the values it represents, but I don't think that we should blame Yale for allowing the events to take place (as some commenters have done).

    Still, there are other ways in which the Yale administration takes a side on these issues, notably through the freshmen counselors and the mandatory sex ed seminars for freshmen (which really should be dispensed with, or at the very least made voluntary for interested students only).

  • Ludwig

    In response to #11:

    The “pornography created Ted Bundy” debate has been lead hundreds of times already, and the intellectual level is so frighteningly low that a thinking person wouldn’t really want to participate. For me, it ranks somewhere between Creationism and the Moon Hoax conspiracy.

    Ted Bundy, like most sociopaths, was a compulsive liar. For years and years, he lied to the authorities about pretty much everything. He claimed innocence for a long time until he finally admitted to his murders. Then, he systematically withheld testimony and only gave out tiny pieces at a time, in the hope that this would keep him alive longer and buy time for appeals. He also fabricated various claims about “inside information” he supposedly had which would help to solve a lot of crimes.

    When it became obvious that time was going to run out, Bundy gave this “porn made me do it” interview to James Dobson, head of the evangelical Christian organization “Focus on the Family”, during the night before his execution. It’s been cited as an “argument” by anti-porn campaigners ever since.

    Never mind the fact that 99.9% of porn viewers don’t turn into serial killers or rapists. Never mind that no serious psychological study has ever managed to find a link between porn and violent behaviour. Never mind that the sex crime rate is virtually the same in societies where porn is freely available as in those where it is illegal. Never mind that Japan, where they have lots of “rape fantasy” porn, actually has one of the lowest sex crime rates in the industrialized world.

    Never mind that Ted Bundy not only had porn at home, but also a vast collection of cheerleader magazines. Did you know that? The type of magazine that 13-year-old girls get in the mail. Bundy loved those and got off on them. I suppose we’ll have to ban them as well.

    Never mind that Bundy had systematically lied to everyone for years (the press, the police, the court), but when he comes up with a “pornography turned me into this” story the night before his execution, it’s supposed to be Gospel truth. When it’s fairly obvious that we’re dealing with a narcissistic serial killer who, when he realizes that there is no escape, tries to shift the blame for his actions somewhere else. As many of his kind do.

    Ah, why am I going on like this, I’m preaching to the choir, and as for those people who believe in the “porn created Ted Bundy” nonsense, they won’t enter into a rational discussion, anyway, because they know that they’re going to lose it.

  • Anonymous

    #33 and #35 If SWAY is an off campus organization and Yale washes its hands of any responsibility what then is the university's role regarding off campus fraternities?

  • life, liberty and morality

    Again Hieronymus has some wonderful points.

    I feel a need to speak out about this issue because as a young woman I was told these same untruths and suffered for years due to my own foolish following of this "liberty." I watched my female friends react the same way to casual sex that I did. Desperately wanting a phone call the next few days, or for the guy to care enough to get to know me a little, only to be disappointed and filled with shame. I witnessed the same in my female friends with very few exceptions. The young men, on the other hand, rarely grew attached after casual sex and generally only pursued meaningful relationships with women who showed self respect enough to wait before physical intimacy.

    I didn't then and don't now see the feminist championing traditional feminine behavior. I don't see them standing up for or supporting the young women that are hurt by this practice. Instead they cheer the "sexual liberty" that in reality only a small, small percent of women find enjoyable. Then, hypocritically, after encouraging young women to be promiscuous by saying different gender reaction is learned rather than innate (and there fore you need deprogrammed or something is wrong with you) they cry out against Yale fraternity members referring to their love of this promiscuous behavior in the ladies. Frankly I am very angry that I was sold an empty bag of goods by the feminists. It was totally my own fault for buying what they sold but I find them despicable for promoting it in the first place.

    The fact is that women are affected differently by sex emotionally than men and it is actually a good thing as it naturally discourages promiscuity in women.

    Like Hieronymus said, take it from some one who is a little further down the road than you in life. I was in your shoes, I was very sad and anxious due to my behavior so I want to warn you not to follow my lead. Read books such as "Unhooked" or Unprotected" for the true (and very UN-PC and unfeminist view) on how destructive casual sex is to a young woman's psyche.

    So you can disagree and dislike what I say (and me personally.) But I feel very strongly compelled to tell this message to the young women of Yale. I wish SWAY Would talk about the emotional toll and not just the physical. And explain how virginity and monogamy benefit women in many ways.

    mandy

  • #30

    to #34: I was responding to a specific comment, made by a sexually active woman, which covers both your comments.

    The point you are missing is the complement, i.e., the fewer one's partners (and the fewer partners has had one's partner), then the lower the chances of various ills.

    This does not preclude sex, good sex, or orgasm: two non-"experienced" mates could have the best of times with little fear of negative outcomes. This is also meant as a corollary to a previous poster who claimed, more or less, that the best (or "most meaningful," anyway) sex is in his marriage.

  • life, liberty and morality

    One more point, if I may.
    This notion of safe sex is misguided. Condoms do not protect from HPV, Herpes and other infections. These diseases can have lifelong negative consequences including infertility and miscarriage. Sadly, people do not always know they are carrying this baggage until they have passed in on to someone else.

    Nature is red in tooth and claw. Treating sex(natures tool for continuing the species) like a party game will have consequences and nature (or from my view God) will right this ship one way or another. Those consequences will be not just personal but society wide as well. We will soon see how this social experiment of "liberated sexuality" finally plays out.

    There is a very good reason that monogamous marriage and female chastity has lasted so long as a tradition in Western Society. It would be in your best interest to not learn this lesson the hard way.

  • #33

    #37, it is poster #33 here again.

    The policy towards off-campus fraternities is essentially the same. There is no direct link between the administration and the various off-campus fraternities, unlike at some other schools which incorporates an office overseeing Greek Life into its administrative structure.

    The only affiliation these frats have with yale is that the members are yale students. Again, no different than the YDN, Rumpus, or any of the a cappella groups.

  • Recent Alum

    "#33 and #35 If SWAY is an off campus organization and Yale washes its hands of any responsibility what then is the university's role regarding off campus fraternities?"

    Same thing, in my opinion. Off-campus fraternities should be able to do mostly what they want, so long as they do not break the law. I certainly don't feel that Yale needs to apologize for supposedly "offensive" behavior by some fraternity members.

  • Anonymous

    #36, you seem to know a lot about the story and a lot of what you says make sense. But then again, doesn't the fact that he gave this interview the night before his execution give somewhat more credibility to the story? I don't see why he would have made-up that particular story at that particular time unless it wasn't true. This is not to say that it was definitely true, just that this is a lot more likely to be true than much of what he had said earlier in the appeals process, when he still had a shot at buying time.

  • Hates SWAY, so many resaons

    1) the one stated in the op/ed
    2) there are a lot of LGBT people at Yale. There are no clearly inclusive events for this group at Sex Week/
    3)man the sex their promoting sounds like some boring sex. they are not pushing the envelope in any way shape or form, unless you are pedestrian enough to count talking about sex at all as controversial.
    4) they really do promote the crazy lifestyle in all but one of their events. it's not for everyone. (i do object to the whole "needy women" thing. sometimes it's true, sometimes not. you just have to know thyself and choose partners who aren't asshats).

    as for making freshman sex-ed optional, i heartily disagree. kids who don't know that stuff already won't want to admit it and go. it is in the school's best interest to have students having safe sex, as ignorant sex-havers will drive up costs at health services. also, even though the talk on date rape is really goofy, it's important, if only even for the girls - they know they can say no.

  • Chrissy

    #44 I obect to your perception of what a 'needy woman' is,
    you said- 'I do object to the whole "needy woman" thing'
    ' sometimes it's true'
    ' sometimes its not'………….I think that your perception of a needy woman is someone who wants an emotional connection with their sexual partener(sometimes it's true) like #38's wanting a phone call,hoping that he really does care,men will lie, I think women more often rightfully assume that the act of sex is sprung from a desire and interest to know the other person,
    ' your thoughts on how women either suffer from the needy woman thing' or dont and therefore dont experince regret with casual sex isnt right.
    **on knowing thyself and choosing partners who arnt asshats, we should all focus on knowing the other person well enough too. waiting for marriage is unrealistic to the majority,casual sex is not knowing the other person well enough before you can safely make the decision to have sex with them (safely)preventing psycological damage
    and physically(being sure about stds's as I said someguys will lie ti your face about that if they think they can just dissapear and not care or see u ever again, waiting is important, waiting too long(for marriage, t unrealistic among most) or not long enough( casual sex, because of the complete separation of emotions from sexual behavior, more common among men, mostly due to porn. teaching kids about sex without mentioning emotional consequences or outcomes, like what a healthy relationship, and what an abusive one is, homosexuality should be discussed too. use a condom, what to do when your raped, good luck, it's obviously not working because stds and suicide are more than ever! oh yes, there are plenty of studies that link porn to violent behaviour and a rise in sexual assaults in areas where their are more, okay you used japan I'm talking about america! you have never been wronger I have definitely read those studies, trust me they exist if you know where to look, hell the antiporn resource has one, though its hard to find, so much stuff….

  • Stephanie

    Callie and Virgina,

    You are SO HOT! I want you NOW!!!

    Stephanie

  • CountSpankula

    You silly yanks who cannot wait until you are age 21 to pretend it is your first time to drink and you Americans get so flustered over a bit of T & A notwithstanding that you have allowed yourselves to become nothing more than a bag of squirming appetites. The person who claims not to have any regrets for all the loves loved and casual ones used on the way is a fool and will one day, make no mistake, will regret it. We all do. You women at Yale should not get angry when the frat-boys raise the banner ‘No, means Yes’ because of what you as a corporate student body are promoting, allowing, advocating, etc; moreover, do you ruttished little collegiates really need to ‘question the way sex is presented in our society’ by learning what sex toys are available? C’mon…..don’t pretend you are virginal in your thinking or in your actions, since when? I am sure in life when things get really hard on you men I am quite confident you can handle yourselves just fine. YO! Ladies, you seem to have your stress-caress with your little ‘girl talks’ to relieve the mess of life….No, the real purpose is to promote at SWAY is how sex-toys and other paraphernalia and the new worldview is setting you up is presented in our society. If you have any hopes of a future stab at a family; however, to the gentlemen, choosing the town pump WOW! What a prize she will be after your best man has seen the happier side of her. Now to the ladies, who should make no mistake when your husband grows weary of the Al Bundy nights at home with you as routine bliss and you look like a two litre of Cola, that cute 16 oz diet energy drink bikini clad babe on the other side of the fence will only remind him of the good ole days at Yale and he will be SWAYing to the music in a banana hammock in her direction. However, the then beer-belly will cast a shadow over his once morning glory days. Why? Ladies & Gentlemen: ‘You will reap what you sow’ is not a probability as one might think ‘this won’t happen to me’ self-deception; however, I do agree that for now, under the guise you can do as you please so you think; yet do not make the whole of society have to pay for the result of your foolish actions in consequences for I am not ‘my neighbours’ keeper’. Also, the real purpose of university, the professed ‘public market place for the exchange of free ideas and freedoms thereof’ wasn’t really intended to be transformed into a brothel-tease. One last thought there is a moron below, not mentioning any names but the initials are ‘I obect’ and other misspelt words, who doesn’t know how to spell. How in the Yale did they get into Yale, which makes me wonder if this person actually knows how to use a condom correctly or (‘wronger’ quote used) because this person should not be allowed to reproduce this low level of intelligence anywhere. Please don’t let them near SWAY. Sincerely Rogue Staff