Thomas Jefferson, the foremost American son of the Enlightenment and author of the Declaration of Independence, is also the father of the University of Virginia. So proud was he of this achievement, when he died in 1826, Jefferson had it inscribed on his gravestone and did not mention that he also happened to be the third President of the United States.
Flash forward to 2014: The University of Virginia is hosting Condomania, the first annual “Condom Olympics,” billed as a “festival of free food, free games, free prizes, free condoms, free lube, and free online coupons” that guaranteed “information about proper condom use, safe and effective forms of birth control, STI testing, screening, and prevention, sex facts, and trivia.”
All of this is funded by your tuition fees and taxpayer contributions. But don’t think of it as merely the inane romps of crazy college kids: serious questions will be answered at this UVA-sponsored event. For instance, “Who Would You Rather: Beyonce or Jenifer Aniston?” Moreover, it should be quite informational: “14 mind-blowing things you need to know about threesomes” will be explored.
Also, some myths and untruths will be promulgated at the event during the “Down ‘n Dirty Jeopardy” game. The correct question to the jeopardy answer, “This is the only contraceptive that can also prevent the spread of STIs, including HIV” is: “What is the Condom?” In truth, no form of contraception guarantees protection from all STIs (that is, except abstinence from sex).
Two major problems exist with UVA sponsoring such an event. First, the festival overtly promotes a cavalier acceptance to casual sex, and studies have demonstrated such attitudes are detrimental–especially to women. Second, the university is allocating considerable UVA funds to underwrite the event, while exercising drastic reductions to middle and low income financial aid assistance.
By hosting this event, UVA sends a message that, although they don’t have funds to help you pay for the cost of your education, they do have funds for condoms and sex games and–oh, yeah–the lube.