Condom contest is an embarrassment

What is this school here for? It’s a stupid question until friends of yours call from home and ask you to send them a bag of condoms. That’s exactly what happened to my roommate Tuesday! It seems people from all over are seeing our school promote condom giveaways. Health Enhancement Services doesn’t seem to care about our reputation or about careful reasoning for that matter. It would be nice if people were bending over backwards for an education from this place … but a “Bag o‘ Rubbers”? Come on (no pun intended).

NIU’s HES is handing out bags of condoms, and then asking folks to tell them what they think about its taste, smell, and sensualness, among other things. Most of my friends don’t mind. They think the giveaway is either funny or a good way to save money. My guess is those who pick up the bags use condoms regularly anyway. If the HES wanted to actually make a difference they would send them to every residence on campus, getting them into the homes of those people who normally wouldn’t use them.

But HES didn’t do that. Instead of directly affecting the problem, they decided to make a little news by handing the condoms out in public. In my opinion, they aren’t trying to make a difference, they’re trying to make the press. And they did! Chicago and national news broadcasts covered the story, and that kind of press is holding our university up to ridicule. It is very sad that NIU only makes the news when students are getting stabbed or rubbers are getting passed out.

This is a waste of money. It cost about $4,000 to perform this media event, at the expense of us students and our university. HES says the purpose of the event is to address the issue of sexually transmitted diseases. Raising our awareness of social problems, such as this, is the job of an educational institution; shocking societal norms by handing out rubbers is not! HES has overstepped its boundaries.

If the state’s job is physically to prevent problems from happening, then why doesn’t the state segregate or kill off races to stop racial problems; why doesn’t the state abort fetuses with Downs Syndrome? The reason is because it rattles society’s moral cage. It offends the people of this country and many of us have deemed it wrong. HES’s justification for handing these out has not been thought out, and in the meantime my money is being wrapped around someone else’s member.

What a waste! NIU spent $4,500 to have columnist William Raspberry come and speak. Because only 400 people showed up, he wasn’t cost effective, and they won’t have him back again. But they will continue to fund contraceptive giveaways. Is this an educational institution or welfare institution? Now that funding is being cut on programs on the basis of priorities and quality, it’s about time NIU focused more on the basics rather than sexual aids that taste good and feel really good on your Johnson!

What does HES coordinator Michael (The Trojan) Haines say about all this? In all his brilliance: “People need to spend more time focusing on the solution rather than arguing about the method.” Wow … that’s pretty deep! Who cares how it happens, just as long as it happens! Mr. Haines, if we don’t care about the method, why not mandate estrogen shots for men, to kill their sex drive? Or kill people with the diseases you are trying to prevent from spreading? How about steel-mesh underwear for women—and only you would have the key, Mr. Haines! Sounds pretty cool. You would be a stud. Did anyone ever suggest removing male student’s organs to you? That would work, just chop it off. Because—as you put it so well—who cares about the method?

People who want condoms are those who already find it acceptable. They use them and they like them, more than likely it’s regardless of taste or bumpiness. All you are doing is giving condoms to those who would use them anyway. Because of this, you are not making a difference. But in the meantime, you are forcing your ideas of promiscuity on the rest of this campus. You patronize us by making it look as if we’re too stupid to take precautions when we have sex. How stupid are we, Mr. Haines, and what does all this say about our university?