Who We Are
First and foremost, we are a group of Yale undergraduates who love Yale.
We love her—just to name a few reasons—for her extraordinary beauty, her long-established traditions, the friendships she has given us, and the intellectual journeys to which she has inspired us. Our love for the university is the first thing that binds us together. And, because we love Yale, we wish to see her always flourishing and improving, both as an institution and as a community of students, consistent with Yale College’s stated mission of developing students’ “intellectual, moral, civic, and creative capacities to the fullest.”
To fulfill this mission, we believe all members of the Yale community—students, professors, employees, and administrators—must work together to promote a campus environment that affirms the dignity of all students and imparts lessons of responsibility, integrity, and respect: lessons not only for the classroom, but for life.
We are, therefore, united in firm opposition to Yale’s prevailing sexual culture, if customs so loose and lax can properly be termed a culture. “Hook-up culture,” “sexual liberation”; call it what you will. We are against it. We believe that a culture of semi-anonymous, “consequence-free” sexual encounters promotes, not responsibility, but irresponsibility. We believe that the self-centered pursuit of personal physical pleasure embodies, not integrity, but indecency. We believe that the hook-up teaches, not mutual respect, but pervasive disrespect, students learning to see one another as mere bodies to be exploited in the endless quest for private satisfaction.
The events of the 2010-2011 school year, notably Delta Kappa Epsilon’s pledge cries of “No means yes! Yes means anal!” (a repeat performance of a 2006 incident) and the Title IX complaints lodged against Yale for sexual harassment and assault, should have demonstrated that something is seriously wrong with Yale students’ attitudes toward sex. We do not intend to propose a panacea, nor, indeed, do we think we are competent to remove cruelty, selfishness, and insensitivity from the human spirit. One thing, however, we are sure of: more of the same is not an acceptable solution. As long as the Yale community assumes that orgasm-on-demand is a basic right and that it is commensurate with human dignity to use another’s body as an object, dysfunctions in our sexual culture should not surprise us. When university officials wax poetic about “glorious consensual sex,” they may palliate the symptoms, but they inflame the disease.
We believe Yale can do better. We exist, therefore, to advocate for a better sexual culture, one grounded in genuine respect and self-giving love; to oppose campus attitudes and events that offer a degrading and trivializing vision of sexuality; and to embody the alternative in our personal lives to the best of our abilities. We stand for a Yale where sexual objectification is unknown, where freshmen are not pressured to accept inebriated hook-ups as the default lifestyle, and where students’ romantic lives teach them to love and respect the whole person, not just the body or particular parts thereof.
We stand, in short, for a better Yale. We challenge you to join us.
To begin, sign our petition calling on the university to withdraw support from Sex Week at Yale. Click here to sign our petition.