Sex on Campus, Part 373

Controversy has descended on Skidmore College, where how-to-masturbate posters hang inside restroom stalls at the campus library. A unisex stick figure on the poster features arrows helpfully pointing to various parts of the body that the sponsor, the college’s Center for Sex and Gender Relations, considers worthy of erotic attention. The posters, also put up in dorms and classroom buildings, tell the reader that “Your body is a wonderland,” and urges each to “spend your day thinking about situations that get you turned on.”  Thinking about one’s very own wonderland that way all day, everyday, may seem like an exhausting regimen, but presumably readers may be allowed a break now and then, perhaps a brief one for study or simply going to the bathroom, particularly since they are already there. 

As a private college, Skidmore doesn’t have to worry about viewpoint discrimination on bathroom walls, but in the interest of fairness, it would be nice to read a few alternate views. Perhaps a short essay on the traditional blindness-masturbation link, or maybe just, “Tired of sexual thoughts all day? Why not become a nun?” A spokesman for the Center said the posters were intended to celebrate Valentine’s Day and will come down soon. Apparently Valentine’s Day at Skidmore is a 20-day event focusing on no-partner love.
 
Northwestern is getting much more publicity than Skidmore in the second-term campus sexual Olympics. A course on sex taught by psychology Professor John Michael Bailey recently featured a naked woman being worked on by a man wielding a sex toy. The man was described as “a Chicago sex tour guide.” The 600-student course, which for some reason is one of the largest at Northwestern, features all kinds of sexual expression and guests that include swingers and convicted sex offenders. The optional, after-class sex-toy demonstration, Bailey said, “helps us understand sexual diversity”–possibly the first time a state-of-the-art vibrator demonstration was stuffed in under the campus diversity umbrella.
 
Nobody seems to have criticized the live sex show as a crucial part of a psychology class. Campus sex educator Laura Anne Stuart said that “demonstrations  of  specific arousal techniques–those definitely have educational value.” Dean of Students Burgwell Howard emitted predictable gaseous tolerance as well, explaining that the event most likely “falls within the broad range of academic freedoms.” As a Christians-lions rematch probably would too.

John Leo

John Leo is the editor of Minding the Campus, dedicated to chronicling imbalances within higher education and restoring intellectual pluralism to our American universities. His popular column, "On Society," ran in U.S.News & World Report for 17 years.

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