Sex and God at Yale: Porn, Political Correctness, and a Good Education Gone Bad

Sex and God at Yale: Porn, Political Correctness, and a Good Education Gone BadThree generations ago William F. Buckley’s classic God and Man at Yale—a critique of enforced liberalism at his alma mater—became a rallying cry of the conservative movement.

In Sex and God at Yale, recent graduate Nathan Harden offers a frank take on the (quite open) perversity running rampant among some quarters of the Ivy League school…as well as what he sees as academic and political ideology gone wild.

In these pages (which includes a fitting foreword by Buckley’s son Christopher, another veteran author) Harden reveals how a loss of purpose—borne of extreme agendas and single-minded political correctness shielded under labels of “academic freedom”—subverts the goals of higher education.

Among the subjects the provocative narrative highlights is the campus’ controversial Sex Week and the social elitism of the Yale “naked party” phenomenon.

The following is an excerpt dealing with Sex Week speaker/presenter Patty Brisben, CEO of Pure Romance—a financial backer of Sex Week—and, Harden writes, the “world’s leading entrepreneurial purveyor of female sex toys” (WARNING: explicit author account follows):

“How many of you have been in an adult-book store or shopped online?” she asks. Many, many hands go up in the audience. She gestures toward her table of lurid merchandise. “Do you want to see some of these?” she says. “Yes!” my fellow students scream in unison. What follows is like a live QVC program. Brisben pitches one vibrator and arousal cream after the next, tag-teaming with a younger assistant. The program is well choreographed and well rehearsed, with lots of humorous punch lines at just the right moments. Things move along quickly as, one by one, she extols the merits of her favorite products.

First, she instructs us on various methods of foreplay. She calls for volunteers. Two students, one girl and one guy, come forward. As they stand before her, she initiates a kind of role-playing game. “You’re going to go home and get your guy butt naked,” she tells the girl. Brisben then puts a blindfold on the male student, puts some scented oil on the back of his hand, and begins to rub him with the “Hot Heart Massager” ($13 not including shipping and handling).

After returning the volunteers to their seats, she begins to demonstrate the ins and outs of personal lubricants. You’ve got your water-based lubricants, which “do not stain.” You’ve got your silicon lubricants, which, she adds, are “great for anal play.” Finally, you’ve got your playful lubricants, which feature various scents and heating actions.

She calls for more volunteers. Another guy and girl come forward, this time even younger looking than the first pair. I squirm in my seat as Brisben rubs lubricant onto a plastic penis, puts it up to her mouth, then starts breathing heavily onto it in order to initiate the heating action—all of this while flanked by a guy and a girl who may well be teenagers.

“I really feel that we are a nation of low libido,” Brisben declares ruefully. In order to fix this problem, she recommends various arousal creams, including one called “Ex-T-Cee” that she jokes “pretty much does everything that the street drug does.” If all else fails, there is the mega-powered “X-Scream.” “Please don’t purchase this for your first time,” she warns slyly. “You will be running around butt-naked, sitting in the snow, screaming your own name.” By the way, she adds, there will be free samples of “X-Scream” awaiting us when we exit the auditorium.

Here’s a freewheeling Bill O’Reilly segment on last February’s Sex Week at Yale:

Harden doesn’t just report on marketed smut; Sex and God at Yale also undresses institutional licentiousness and examines how Yale got to a point where:

  • During Sex Week, porn producers were allowed on campus property to give demonstrations on sexual technique—and give out samples of their products.
  • An art student received departmental approval—before the ensuing media attention alerted the public and Yale alumni—for an art project in which she claimed to have used the blood and tissue from repeated self-induced miscarriages.
  • The university became the subject of a federal investigation for allegedly creating a hostile environment for women.

(Related: As you might expect, many Yalies and lefties haven’t taken kindly to Harden’s pointed opinions—though the New York Times offered a reasonably fair critique; indeed the author battles back via National Review Online, noting the campus’ “latest sexual perversion.”)

Harden also examines the inherent contradictions in the partisan politicizing of higher education, asking questions such as:

  • What does it say when Yale seeks to distance itself from its Divinity School roots while hiring a Muslim imam with no academic credentials to instruct students?
  • What does it say when Yale has refused to allow the ROTC on campus for decades while inviting a former Taliban spokesperson to study at the university?
  • What does it say when Yale employs a professor who praised Hamas terrorists?

The Yale alum also asks:

  • What sort of moral leadership can we expect from Yale’s presidents and CEOs of tomorrow?
  • Will the so-called “abortion artist” be leading the National Endowment for the Arts in 20 years?
  • Will a future U.S. president employ techniques in the closet of the Oval Office he or she learned during Yale’s Sex Week?
  • If tyrants tell little girls they aren’t allowed to go to school, will an Ivy-educated Taliban emissary be the one to deliver the message?

(Related: Check out this Q&A between Harden and The Hillsdale Collegian about how his book came together.)

Conservative intellectual Robert P. George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence at Princeton University, has stirring words regarding Harden’s observations in Sex and God at Yale (as well as the culture that lionizes as phenomenon such as Sex Week):

The ideology of sexual liberation that is the lasting legacy of ‘Me generation’ liberalism and its imbecilic doctrine of ‘if it feels good do it,’ has hardened into an orthodoxy on college campuses around the country. Not only is it uncritically embraced by many students, it is supported by a great many faculty members and abetted and even promoted in a variety of ways by academic administrators. In the spirit of the late William F. Buckley, Nathan Harden takes a hard, critical look at the prevalent sexual liberationist dogmas at Yale, exploring their damaging effects on the educational enterprise and their often tragic consequences in the lives of students.

 

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