Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image

The Blue & Gray Press | December 16, 2017

Scroll to top

Top

The New Sexclamations: Not a Pleasurable Read for Everyone

My grandmother is an avid reader of the Bullet.

She reads the online edition every Thursday, looking forward to reading the happenings of her alma mater.

A few weeks ago, however, she received quite a shock when she tuned in.  She saw the first column of the new Sexclamations.

Needless to say, my inbox had an e-mail waiting from her regarding the column.

Her overall opinion was that it was “tasteless” and “some things are best kept under wraps and are more interesting if shared with select folks.”

I can’t say I disagree.

Sex is an incredibly intimate expression of love, and that’s how it should stay.

No one wants to know how many times a day you masturbate, how many people you’ve had sex with or what your favorite positions are.

If you take the passion out of sex and degrade it by putting it in print, it becomes less of an act of love and more like watching promiscuous college students get it on.

I understand “freedom of expression” and that writing about women’s roles in masturbation and pornography might be seen as “empowering”.  However, I don’t think that vulgarity on these topics will bring women any closer to liberation.

Sex is an incredibly relevant topic on college campuses.  But a more pertinent topic, and ultimately more interesting, would be the relational aspect of intimacy, something readers can relate to whether they’re having sex or not.

This column should make the newspaper read all over, not make its readers red all over. The private and intimate nature of sexuality is exploited and ultimately disregarded if the focus rests solely on self-gratification.

Comments

  1. Ellie

    Maybe you and your grandmother need to get out of the 1920s and get your heads out of your rear ends. Guys talk and joke about masturbation all the time and no one chastises them. The minute someone tries to break the mold and destigmatize female sexuality it is gross. Quite frankly, I find your attitudes grosser than the sexclamations column. The author is trying to make women more comfortable with their sexuality and safer in the boudoir. You and your grandmother can stick your fingers in your ears and go “blah blah blah I can’t hear you” all you want, but these issues will still be out there. Women will still have vaginas whether we talk about it or not, so lets talk about it. Let’s normalize it. Lets destigmatize female sexuality.

    And P.S, I don’t really think it’s your grandmother’s business to be dictating what Mary Wash students read. The Bullet is a student paper read primarily by students, and you there are more students regularly interacting with the college than there are alums. Shouldn’t the paper be more student friendly than grandma friendly?

  2. Katy

    Ummm sorry but can’t your grandmother just skip sexclamations if it offends her? If she’s older than five we shouldn’t have to censor anything for her. It’s not too hard, jsut don’t click on sexclamations. easy peasy.

  3. Jamie

    Ellie- your vaginal self-righteousness is really annoying.

  4. Haley

    I think that this week’s column in particular is anything but offensive, but is instead highly informative and honest. I must agree with Katy that perhaps your grandmother should not read a newspaper column that offends her. 🙂

  5. Liz

    I don’t think Anne is trying to say we should eliminate Sexclamations because it offends her grandmother, she was just using it as an example to say that it may be slightly inappropriate at times.
    Yes, we are in college and everyone loves the freedom associated with this lifestyle. That being said, no one needs to know how many times a day you masturbate.
    Yes, guys joke around about whacking off all the time. That doesn’t mean we want to hear about it. At this day in age, I think we all know that males and females are sexual beings, and “exposés” about female masturbation are hardly informative or profound. Carrie Bradshaw did that for us starting about 15 years ago. As masturbation is something people do by themselves (and for themselves), I agree with Anne/her grandmother that some things are better kept under wraps.

  6. Sandra

    While I agree, sometimes the author is very blunt, I think that’s the way it should be. She is setting an example of being comfortable with herself and her experiences by speaking her mind. Just because we’re uncomfortable talking about our sexuality doesn’t mean we shouldn’t, in my opinion, it means we need to talk about it more, so everyone is comfortable with it. Guys talk about masturbation and sex openly, and girls should be able to as well without being judged.

    And I agree with Haley and Katy, if your grandmother doesn’t like it, she can choose not to read Sexclamations.

  7. Bill and Lucy C.

    In my opinion, the column was intended to be provocative and a little shocking so as to draw attention to the author. It also was sophomoric and tasteless. But, then, as the Romans used to say, “De gustibus non disputandum est.” (There’s no disputing about taste.) Some people have it, some don’t, and there’s no point arguing about it.

    Also, she never said she was “offended”,…she said the article was tasteless, and that it was!

  8. Peter

    If you don’t like it, don’t read it. Anyone who says Sexclamations is tasteless clearly doesn’t understand what the column is about: SEX. If you think talking about porn is tasteless, maybe you should stick to reading Highlights for Children. I have only heard students say good things about the new direction that Sexclamations is taking. Don’t let these tasteful, anal retentive people discourage you Erin!

  9. Daniel

    As has been said many times already here, if you/your grandmother doesn’t like it, then nobody is making you read it. Unenlightened people like Anne, Jamie, Liz, and possibly the worst, Bill and Lucy C., are what bring down progress in female journalism. I could not be more thankful that you people have no role in determining what Ms. Hill writes in her column. I also question your reading comprehension skills. To say that Erin makes a vulgar/ tasteless joke out of masturbation and pornography is not even close to accurate. The point of these columns is to get people talking and thinking as we are now, while at the same time providing an approachable well written look at truly sexual topics. We have enough relationship advice in the Bullet and Sexclamations! deserves to live up to its name as an expression and exclamation of sex related issues. To Anne, grandmothers, and friends, I take heart in knowing that your opinion is a small but annoyingly noisy minority and I commend Erin for writing the most thought provoking and interesting column in the Bullet every week.

  10. Erin

    Liz (and others)- The intention of the Female Masturbation article was not to illustrate “how many times a day [I] masturbate.” I agree that that is “tmi” and irrelevant. Instead, the article was intended to shed light on and de-stigmatize female masturbation. Women should not be ashamed about it; it’s normal. Additionally, I was hoping my articles might open a dialogue about sexual exploration and discovery. I wanted people to have an open-minded conversation. Sure, it may not be tremendously thought provoking and deep-but it’s real. It happens. It’s interesting. I don’t believe the topic of sex should be a taboo. Clearly you disagree and believe it’s a completely private practice and I respect your perspective. As a writer in “Viewpoints,” I believe I am permitted to discuss sexual issues that many students want to read. After all, it is my viewpoint. Take it or leave it. Several people have told me that they enjoy my column and look forward to it every week. I hope to continue to inform and please that audience with interesting articles.
    Anne- I’m sorry you and your grandmother (and a few others who have commented) find my articles “tasteless.” I respect your opinions. On the other hand, I think it’s important that we remember what I have written and what I have not; while I have written about topics that could be considered shocking to some people, I have NOT written about “how many times a day [I] masturbate, how many people [I’ve] had sex with, or what [my] favorite positions are.” In fact, I agree with you, Anne, doing so would be quite “tasteless.” However, writing about an interview with a gynecologist that answers questions others might have been afraid to ask is, in my opinion, far from tasteless.
    My intentions are not to expose details of my sexual life, degrade the meaning of sex, or make crude/vulgar statements. My intentions are to creatively educate, provoke curiosity/inquiry, and encourage sexual conversation- in hopes that people become more comfortable with sex and sexuality. You say that I’m taking the “passion out of sex and degrading by putting it into print.” I firmly disagree. I think it’s quite the contrary. In my female masturbation article, I discuss the splendid nature of giving oneself a riveting, breathtaking orgasm…I don’t find that in any way degrading nor do I think it will take the passion out of my next sexual experience. Likewise, the message of my pornography article is that your next sexual experience will probably not be similar to a porno. I’m basically saying to men, “Hey, just because the woman in the video is smiling when she takes a cumshot to the face does not mean most women in real life want jizz on their face.” Porn can be degrading. My stance against unrealistic interpretations of sex is NOT. Sure, my language is a bit vulgar- but I believe it is important in relaying my message in some instances.
    Finally, I believe many people can relate to my articles, whether they’re having sex or not- or whether or not they have a partner. You don’t need a partner to masturbate. You don’t need a partner to visit the gynecologist. You don’t need a partner to watch amateur porn. Similarly, you don’t need to be having sex to have curiosities about those things. Sexclamations should include sexual ideas/concepts/education. Relationships are important, too. Sex and relationships are both broad topics that deserve coverage. Maybe we should have someone write a column on relationships.
    All in all, I’m sorry if I offended anyone with my strong language or “tastlessness.” I hope that some of you will reexamine the points I’m trying to make and think about sex and sexuality with an open-mind. Thank you to all of the readers and writers who have supported Sexclamations! It is greatly appreciated!!

  11. Maggie

    Well, I was going to make a rebuttal, but I’m pretty certain Erin covered absolutely every point I could possibly have addressed. Still, I think I’d like to add on a bit more. College students, represent!

    Sexclamations! is a column that addresses very real social stigmas. It aims to put forth food for thought and educate people about sexuality. Erin places a BIG emphasis on safe sex, addresses matters frankly and without the intention to insult, disgust, or vulgarize, and I know a lot of students who look forward to her column other than myself. In this age, sexuality shouldn’t be a taboo. Neither should discussing it. It’s unfortunate that some people find her column tasteless, but I would much rather Erin not censor herself for fear of being called “vulgar.” Keep in mind that college students are entering a time of sexual exploration and experimentation, and the Sexclamations! column is a way of providing information about how to have fun and stay safe. It’s educational, it’s thought-provoking, and it’s open-minded. To think that the author is only talking about herself and her sexual preferences is, to be honest, a sign that you haven’t been reading very well.

    Simply put, if you don’t want to read about the physical aspects of the act and its controversial topics, then it would be better to avoid a column that is specifically set up to talk about all things sex related.

  12. Charlie

    I can say in all honesty that this is probably the worst thing that I’ve ever read in the Bullet. I cannot believe that they allowed this to run to print. It’s irrelevant and not representative of what 95% of our students hold as their values, probably because most of the students here aren’t old women.

    We’re young adults and we should be able to talk about sex, and its fantastic that the Bullet is a forum for intelligent people to share their ideas, thoughts, and experiences related to sex. The article to which you were referring was a great read. I’m sure many girls were able to relate to the writer and appreciated her honesty. I enjoy almost ever sexclamation article printed, even if they do use words not socially respectable for your grandmother to hear-that’s not their purpose. They are intended to develop us as people, and make us feel inclusive about our sexuality. It’s outrageous that you expect censorship. The reason that these articles haven’t been censored by editors is because their nature is not to be reverent and suppressed. If you don’t like what they have to say, then don’t read them. If they don’t represent your ideals, then deal with it.

    I really hope that your article didn’t embarrass or detract other students who have previously written from writing again. Their thoughts are usually articulate and it takes a lot of courage to put your name on something pertaining to something as personal as sex- and I certainly hope that it doesn’t detract people from writing in the future.

    If your grandmother is unhappy with the state of young people and their sexuality, her opinions shouldn’t be the focus in an article in a paper for students at a college. You and her are entitled to your opinions, but not when it makes others feel ashamed for legitimate work they have done for what I consider to be a legitimate publication. Even if you aren’t comfortable with your own sexuality, you shouldn’t judge others for being comfortable with theirs.

  13. Jon

    “The point of these columns is to get people talking and thinking as we are now, while at the same time providing an approachable well written look at truly sexual topics.”
    — We are talking. But with comments like this, it goes to show how childish a majority of the students are. We make an opinion and you want to take your ball and go home. Either be open-minded and willing to listen to others or just keep your mouth shut. You add nothing to any “discussion” when you downplay someones opinion. This is a two-way street, just like sex. Imagine that.

    “..are what bring down progress in female journalism”
    — Can you tell me how talking about masturbating is “progress” in female journalism? Seems like you are objectifying the whole act of sex, masturbation, ect., with a section dedicated to such things.

  14. Eric

    To be 100% honest, I disagree with what Anne wrote. I enjoyed the Sexclamation article from last week, and I thought it was an interesting topic. But that’s where it ends. I won’t engage in what too many people have on this comment board. Namely, personal attacks.
    If you actually read the article, you’d know that Anne, while taking issue with the aim of Sexclamations, never once called for its removal, for it to be censored, or to restrict the content. She expressed a VIEWPOINT, on the VIEWPOINTS page. I understand disagreement, but why all the hatred?
    I find it ironic how the comments on this page shout about “respect the opinions of others!” while they at the same time not only criticize Anne for her opinion, but attack her personally. Really Daniel? Setting female journalists back? A single article in a Viewpoint section of one issue of a paper is responsible for setting back the feminist movement? Gwen Ifill and Katie Couric appreciate your concern. I appreciate criticism, as I’m sure Anne does, but let’s keep our comments out of the realm out of the hyperbolic.

  15. Eric

    Quote: “I cannot believe that they allowed this to run to print. It’s irrelevant and not representative of what 95% of our students hold as their values, probably because most of the students here aren’t old women.”

    UMW: “Where We’re All For Freedom of the Press, Unless we Disagree With What the Press Publishes.”

  16. Maggie

    Eric, if you’re going to chastise other people for making personal attacks, please don’t engage in them yourself.

  17. Daniel

    First off, welcome to the childish majority Jon. You can take your holier than thou attitude and go flame some other forum. If you actually read my comment with the mindfulness of the smart man you’d like to think you are, you would see that by “setting female journalists back” I refer generally to persons who try to at all influence the direction of an individual author, male or female, away from an open and honest approach that author wishes to take. Erin and I would never suggest that sex should be objectified and Erin herself has elaborated on how wrong people who take her column in that way are. Nobody said the “discussion” on these topics was going to be pretty and I have as much right as you do to call it as I see it. You sir, can feel free to take your proverbial ball wherever you wish. I, and many others with me, choose to stand up for Erin and the Sexclamations! column she writes every week.

    Really Eric? Really? Refer to what I said to Jon above as a response to your misreading of my comment. I do admire female journalists but I never mentioned a thing about a broader feminist movement. It is ill advised to put words in the mouth of someone whose intentions you don’t know. With every comment posted here Erin wins and people who think issues like sex, masturbation, and heavy hitting language, should be kept “under wraps” lose.

    Let it be clear that I am unapologetic for any offense that I cause anybody. If you put your name in this forum, you are as subject to criticism as I am. That being said let me reiterate to Jon, Eric, and others with some of my more sensitive people friendly/”discussion” contributory opinions on Sexcalamations!…

    In my opinion, Sexclamations! under Erin Hill’s authorship provides the most interesting to read “viewpoint” on sex that I have read in any paper or internet article in a long time. I believe that her bold approach to such a universal topic is honest, humorous, and at the same time very informative. While Jon, Eric, and all other males have little need to see a gynecologist, the information Erin provides in this article can be generally accepted as useful knowledge. I also believe that the same can be said for her articles on female masturbation and women in pornography. She knows very well that those are controversial subjects and she chooses to approach them lightheartedly as opposed to the tone of a middle school health class. Erin has done an excellent job as an editorial columnist to not fall victim to the opinions of anyone but herself and she has every right to continue to write in whatever style she pleases. Subjects like the ones she discusses are not for her own self promotion or grandmas, they are for the mature audience of college students on this campus. Beyond these opinions, refer to her own response for the rest of what I would have ended up saying anyway. If Anne, Grandma, and friends don’t like it, then write a letter to complain every week but be aware that every response you write is subject to a counter response. If you can’t handle that, then don’t post at all.

  18. Eric

    Dear Daniel,

    I consider myself a reasonable man. A person with the “mindfulness of a smart man,” if you like.That’s why i’m going to apologize for invoking a larger women’s movement in my last post. It extrapolated entirely too much and diverted from the debate at hand. Again, apologies. Now, I found your last post interesting, because it accused me, amongst other things, of wanting to keep such topics as female masturbation “under wraps.” However, if you read my last post, I clearly say, and I quote:

    “To be 100% honest, I disagree with what Anne wrote. I enjoyed the Sexclamation article from last week, and I thought it was an interesting topic.”

    Right there! I just did you you a favor Danny-Boy. You could have left a good chunk of your last comment unposted, because here’s the dirty secret: I agree with you! I liked the Sexclamations article a lot. I thought it was funny, smart and informative. I know it sounds cool to accuse folks of wanting to “hide the truth” and engage in “cover-ups,” but this isn’t X-Files and you aren’t David Duchovny.

    What I took issue with, and why I posted in the first place, was the personal attacks that were being leveled at Ann. I may make snarky comments, but I never once, nor will I ever, take this debate, twist it, and accuse you, Daniel, say, of setting back (insert group name here) in journalism. That’s presumption on a grand scale, and ultimately does nothing to forward our discussion. There’s a world of difference between shooting back with legitimate criticism, and making tired, ham-fisted attempts to sound edgy by intentionally invoking emotionally charged issues (Like I did with the invocation of feminists earlier. See? Didn’t sit to well with you, did it?)
    Daniel, you couch this debate as if there are strict “winners” and “losers” (“With every comment posted here Erin wins and people who think issues like sex, masturbation, and heavy hitting language, should be kept “under wraps” lose.”) but the reality isn’t all that dire, is it?
    Erin’s column will still get posted weekly, and Anne still gets to address her concerns. This isn’t a boardgame. We’re all on the same team, sir. I love that we can have this debate, and I love that we can disagree and still go about reading and writing for the Bullet. Criticism and questioning are the hallmarks of what makes the Bullet (and any newspaper for that matter great) but when we start using language that demonizes, we’re not contributing, we’re just, to use a term i’m sure you’d appreciate, mentally masturbating.

  19. nicole

    “I don’t think that vulgarity on these topics will bring women any closer to liberation.”

    By discussing safe and enjoyable sex and masturbation, and in her column which promotes the use of condoms and having sex only with a partner about whom one cares deeply, you’re right, Erin IS putting women back in the dark ages.

    If by the dark ages, you mean back when women couldn’t discuss sex or any issues they may have been having, and were living shorter, unfulfilled, boxed-in lives.

    congratulations, Ann. you’re right, that DOES stick us in the dark ages. now, Erin, no more writing about women’s issues at all because that is counter to women.

    wait, WHAT?

  20. Daniel

    Dear Eric,

    From mental masturbator to mental masturbator, I’m going to have to go ahead and clarify some things that still don’t seem to be sinking in for you…

    Number 1: You must really be thinking a lot of yourself to read my entire last post and somehow get that I addressed the entire thing to you. While you are at no more moral high ground than I am, my main quarrel lies with Jon and his inflammatory comments directed strictly towards me. You made the unfortunate mistake of reiterating his nonsense about a broader feminist movement and therefore where responded to in a 3 sentence paragraph following my response to Jon. I appreciate your acknowledging that you were out of line in trying to extrapolate more than I said out of what I wrote however, and commend your clear thinking on this matter.

    Number 2: Yay! I’m so happy that we agree with each other!!! While this was never unclear to me in the first place, I find it fitting to let you know how I feel. As I said earlier, my initial issue with you was not that you I though you supported Anne and her grandmother, but rather that you put some words in my mouth that I never meant to speak. That being said, my issue with you now is the near entirety (minus the part where I know we agree) of your last post. I stand by the belief that any person who tries to bring sexual journalism into a more backwards/conservative style or concept of writing is in fact doing a disservice to journalism as a whole. Is this about feminism? No. Is this about Eric and his/my fists of ham? No. Is this about Anne Elder’s article that I can have my opinion on and that sits at the top of this page? Yes. What’s interesting to me Eric, is that I never accused anybody here of trying to promote “cover ups of the truth”. That phrase stems directly from your own mind and deserves no place in responding to me, especially if you are going to mock me by calling me “Danny-Boy” and refer to my supposed efforts to expose hidden truths as being David Duchovny-like.

    Number 3: “(Like I did with the invocation of feminists earlier. See? Didn’t sit to well with you, did it?)”<————-You're going to have to clarify whatever you mean here because right now, it makes no sense.

    Number 4: I do acknowledge that I was out of line in framing this debate as having winners and losers. I am aware that this is an unhealthy way to go about things and I regret adding that sentence to my last post. This debate is not a score to be settled, but rather an intellectual, mature conversation between people at this University. That is why I disagree with Anne and her grandmother about the direction Erin chooses to take this column. In its current form, people on this response page and people who read the Bullet's print version ARE talking. I feel like this much less the case before and I enjoy fully reading everyone’s comments. This is exactly what is supposed to happen and I am well aware that criticism and questioning are the hallmark of such columns.

    With best regards, Daniel

  21. Professor Dumbledore

    I think it’s important to discuss these topics openly. In todays world, where there is an unlimited supply of information (both accurate and inaccurate), it is important for people to get reliable knowledge about life and sex. I think this column helps people and provides useful information for students. If you don’t approve or are offended by the article, you simply don’t have to read it.
    On a side note, here at Hogwarts, we enthusiastically support student fornication and exploration. Why else would we place students in unsupervised common rooms? Last week I walked in on Marcus Belby bumping uglies with Parvati Patil. I didn’t even stop them.

  22. Brad

    I think she’s right, it wasn’t tasteful at all. Of course getting things out in the open like that is the best way to make it uncomfortable and less awkward although, most people I know aren’t intending on looking at “the bullet” for information on their sex life. Can you imagine if a guy wrote about jerking off in the bullet?

  23. Jon

    Dearest Daniel,
    I do consider myself a reasonable man, a smart one at that, and yes I did take a bit of a “holier than though” attitude , but let me do some clarifying. I was merely using a quote from your post to address a large problem that I see in this line of “conversing.” I should have made this point clearer. When it comes to discussing something, language such as:

    “Maybe you and your grandmother need to get out of the 1920s and get your heads out of your rear ends,” and
    “Unenlightened people like Anne, Jamie, Liz, and possibly the worst, Bill and Lucy C., are what bring down progress in female journalism. I could not be more thankful that you people have no role in determining what Ms. Hill writes in her column,”

    I do not see that as discussion, I see that as attacking. If you are able to have and express your own opinion, which you are, why cannot Anne be allowed to have hers and express hers. To this is what I referred to as “childish.” No matter how you cut it, it is. Those who feel that they have to belittle someone in an attempt to make them seem “old” or “not with the times” are too lazy to actually listen be “open-minded” themselves.

    And please, pretty please, someone explain to me how talking about female masturbation is pushing forward female journalism. I am open to any explanations, I just don’t see it.

    Regards,
    Jon

  24. Erin

    I don’t find the article distasteful at all. College students approach sexuality in many, diverse ways, and having information available will only help us make healthy sexual choices, whether you choose to abstain or engage with partners.
    Sex will happen on a college campus whether an article in the Bullet runs or not. Better to remain informed about proper women’s health than avoid sexual subjects.

  25. Ellie

    I would like to apologize from the bottom of my heart and with the utmost humility, for all it’s worth. I’m sorry that I wrote that Ms Elder and her grandmother should take their head out of their rear ends. That was stupid of me and it set an incendiary tone for this whole discussion. I was pretty upset when I wrote that, but that doesn’t excuse my behavior. It was wrong of me. I had meant to delete that particular point but I forgot to do so before I hit submit. Still I shouldn’t have thought that, let alone said it. I am sincerely embarrassed and I apologize for any hurt feelings I have caused. Though I stand by the rest of my post I’d like to redact the first sentence.

  26. Jim

    I think it’s truly sad to see the vile spirit in some of the responses to Anne Elder’s editorial. It’s demoralizing to me to see today’s youth so lost. How did our society get to the point where someone who stands for integrity and good taste in journalism is reviled so? It’s more disappointing still to see current students at MWU show such disrespect and carelessness towards one of their elders, an alumnae who reads the Bullet regularly. Instead of showing her the respect she deserves, she is ridiculed and abused by so many shameful students.

    I can only hope that those who seem to have lost the spirit of such a prestigious educational institution will gain it back during the years spent at MWU. Despite your opinion on this particular topic, many of you could stand to learn respect and honor, something that used to be commonplace in the southern parts of this great country. Shame on you.

  27. Morrgan

    I agree with Anne. Just because you feel comfortable discussing how you touch yourself doesn’t mean I want to hear about it. If you say I shouldn’t read it, how would I know NOT to read it unless I already have? This isn’t liberating for females – it’s the opposite. Girls already fight being objectified by today’s culture; we’re ‘scored’ at bars like a goal in a game and seen as a prize or a commodity rather than a human being. The more we publicize sex and ‘feeling good,’ the less we’ll focus on the interpersonal and emotional aspects, which have more lasting effects than anything you feel with your nerves. Masturbation is a completely personal choice, and if you want to participate, I certainly have no right to stop you, nor would I want to try. But publicizing it doesn’t make the world a more ‘feminist’ place, it just continues the ‘girls+sexual pleasure=happy, please achieve’ struggle that many of us want to eliminate.

  28. Virginia

    I want to remind everyone, as Eric did, that Anne wrote a viewpoints piece and does not deserve personal attacks for her article. If those of you who claim to be so open-minded about sexuality cannot listen to someone who has a different views, then you may need to reexamine yourself.

    I respect Erin’s level-headed response to the comments on her article, because she is the real author under scrutiny here. She handled herself much more gracefully than those of you who are bickering back and forth, and she has a lot more at stake.

    Finally, I would like to say that I agree with Anne. Though her grandmother does not dictate what goes in the Bullet, she is a reminder that there are other readers besides us college students. I know that it is the editors’ hope to increase readership, so they should know what people think. I think that a decent sized minority has expressed their disagreement with such vulgar content appearing in our paper. Just because we are the minority in this debate, does that mean that we do not deserve to be listened to at all? I personally find it boring to listen to one side all the time. I find it refreshing that someone like Anne voiced her conservative values in a paper that is so often one-sided. I applaud her for having the courage to speak up, and I urge others with similar views to do the same, even if you fear the response you may receive.

  29. M

    I read the original Sexclamations piece on female masturbation, and I wasn’t happy. (I’m a male Mary Wash junior, by the way) The basic point, that female masturbation is more “taboo” than male masturbation, as well as the point that masturbation can be healthy and a safe alternative to sex, was good. But it went overboard with what basically amounted to instructions on how to do it, and how often you can. That wasn’t necessary. If you really don’t know and you’d like to, then ask a friend — or google it! I’m not against female masturbation, but I don’t think we need to read about the varying ways you can do it in the school paper.

    There’s a difference between something being right, and appropriate to print. I have no moral objections to female masturbation, per se. But there’s no real reason why we have to read all the details in the paper. Let’s show some class, please. If you’re going to keep Sexclamations around (And I’m not so sure you should) then some basic guidelines should be enforced. Not necessarily because what’s being said is wrong, but because it may be something that should be discussed privately, rather than in the school paper.

    As I was taught as a child….it’s not just what you have to say that matters, but also when, where, and how you say it.

  30. alum

    Quite frankly I’m sick of this section of the bullet. Its bad today, it was bad four years ago. I’m not saying this because I find the topic of sex, or masturbation, in the school paper offensive. Its just pathetic. I’m sick of reading boring sexual tales written by someone fulfilling their dreams of being Carrie Bradshaw. Its boring, and poorly written- always has been. For the love of God, write about something else please.

  31. Joseph

    I’m actually shocked that no one has brought up the fact that this is a public university and questioned the appropriateness of this type of article as a respresentation of the student body and a respresentation of a state-supported institution of higher learning. Does UMW have a Department of Sexual Studies that I am unaware of? I also think it is equally as close-minded to dismiss the objections of students opposed to the section as “missing the point” as it is for someone to suggest Sexclamations is inappropriate due to what their grandmother wants to read.

    If you really wanted to water this down into a “this is what college is all about” argument and suggest that this is a good thing because it gets the information out there, I would like to call your “what college is about” argument and raise you a “how is this helping you prepare for the world after college”. If I feel as if I have tackled the issue of masterbation, how does this help me go into the world and more efficiently socialize and build relationships with coworkers? How does knowing how many times a writer masterbates better prepare me to face the struggles of society and learn how to over come them.

    I guess what I’m getting at is that college is here to help people discuss things they may have difficulty with, and I will admit that a part of that is sex. However, there is a lot more to like than sex. I don’t see any reason why the Bullet couldn’t write a regular column that is on a broad topic to cover many things, sex included, and still maintain that edginess that I know drives any media outlet.

    I’m fully aware no minds will be changed due to a comment on a viewpoint, but just consider this: just because there is a right, a capability, and a desire to express an opinion or viewpoint does not mean someone should feel compelled to do so. Judging from many of the comments here and the response of the author for sexclamations, I would say that is exactly what is rearing it’s ugly head.