Safer Sex-in a New Millennium – How to Teach LGBTQ+ Safer Sex Practices

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Picture Courtesy: Taken from Walden, eating disorders treatment Website.

By Samragyee Gautam.

As someone who believes in sexual health education and its need among college students, I believe that everyone especially students must have enough resources to get adequate information about safer sexual health. My past few posts on this topic reflect that there isn’t enough information or knowledge among students regarding safer sexual practices. Now imagine the knowledge or resources one might have who identifies as an LGBTQ community member!

Even in the present world, which is considered more open and welcoming to the community, there are some problems of discrimination and exclusion that the people of LGBTQ community still face. With that being said, there must be some special efforts that are to be made so that sexual health issues are properly and timely addressed. One of those efforts is the event or session that is organized by Inland Oasis this coming Sunday on Nov 19 from 12pm to 3 pm at 1912 Center Moscow, Idaho. Continue reading “Safer Sex-in a New Millennium – How to Teach LGBTQ+ Safer Sex Practices”

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WHAT YOUR PARENTS DID NOT TELL YOU!

 

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Picture Courtesy: Facebook page of the event posted by Women Center’s 

By Samragyee Gautam.

In the light of how important sex education is, especially for women, the Women’s Center at The University of Idaho has been organizing various events related to this topic. Lo Que tus Padres No te Dijeron, translated as What Your Parents Didn’t Tell You, is one of the programs co-hosted by the Women Center(WC), the Office of Multicultural Affairs(OMA) and Campus Assistance Migrant Program(CAMP) for students; especially Latinx Students as Latin Heritage Month is celebrated at the UofI from Sep 15 to Oct 15. Previously, WC used to organize a somewhat similar sex-ed event or forum called “GOT-SEX?” that focused on topics of sexual health, birth control, social pressures, and sexual practices. However, it was not focused to a specific student group.

According to Bekah Miller MacPhee; the OVW Project Director, who is coordinating this program, WC, OMA and CAMP came up with the idea as a group. Various surveys and focus groups were held in the spring of 2014 related to sexual education among women of color who also had different cultural backgrounds. This resulted in the fact that Latinx students were under served, both men and women. That’s how it got started three years ago; however, this is the first time this event is called/named in this particular way. Continue reading “WHAT YOUR PARENTS DID NOT TELL YOU!”

Generation Action: The Voice for Planned Parenthood on Campus

Generation Action
Picture Courtesy: Planned Parenthood official website

By Samragyee Gautam

How many of you are interested in talking about sex? How many of you are interested in discussing safe sex? Whether you are clueless, knowledgeable curious, or just interested, Generation Action (GA) is a great place to start. It is a voice of Planned Parenthood; a private organization on campus promoting sexual health and education for both men and women from general health care to birth control. GA advocates for promoting sex education among students.

The main goal of this club; according to the President Emily Carter who I spoke with before writing this post, is to make sex education visible and accessible and let people know that Planned Parenthood is there for any sexual related questions or problems: general health, birth control, STD testing or abortion. Carter, who is a sophomore double majoring in Psychology and Sociology with criminal emphasis and minoring in Women and Gender Studies, joined this club because of her passion for Planned Parenthood. She joined as a general member in her freshman year, but when she noticed the club was not getting enough attention she decided to be in-charge. And as a recent new member of the club, I can tell you that she is good at her job. Continue reading “Generation Action: The Voice for Planned Parenthood on Campus”

The Sexualization of Children and Sex Education

By Kate Ringer

A concern for many parents is the sexualization of children, which is defined by the American Psychological Association as occurring when, “A person’s value comes only from his or her sexual appeal or behavior, a person is held to a standard that equates 

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An illustration of a popular doll for children

physical attractiveness with being sexy, a person is sexually objectified, or sexuality is inappropriately imposed on a child.” As this article points out, children are not inherently sexual. When we see babies’ upper thighs in their onesies, we aren’t concerned with people thinking that our babies are sexy, and it should be the same exact way with a child. A child wearing short shorts and a tank top isn’t inherently sexy, but they become that way when the child is taught to engage in inappropriate behaviors, such as the dance routines on Toddlers & Tiaras. Children do not behave that way unless they have been taught to behave that way through the constant media bombardment of sex culture, whether it’s through video games, movies, television shows, advertisements, or their toys. There was a study conducted by Bandura in the sixties that showed children mimicking, or “modeling,” the behavior of adults after being exposed to short video of adults playing with a doll happily
or violently. If they viewed the adult being violent with the doll, they were much more likely to be violent when exposed to the doll in their play. This concept of modeling can certainly be applied to the sexualization of children as well. Children whose parents and the media model behavior that model sexualized behavior may transfer the behavior to their own actions, according to Bandura’s theory of learning. I can remember as a child wanting to wear lipstick just like my mom, and it felt so special when I got to wear it for a special occasion. That is an example of modeling. 
Continue reading “The Sexualization of Children and Sex Education”

Consent and Sex

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A woman holding a sign during SlutWalk

By Kate Ringer

Just before school started this year, I was lucky enough to be an Orientation Leader, which meant that I got to walk a group of about forty freshman around campus for various structured activities to help them adjust to being in college. During that process, every single freshman who attended orientation (which is a lot) watched this video comparing sex to drinking tea. Through humor, this video promoted one of the most important messages that a new batch of students could receive upon arriving to campus: how to know that the sexual activity they are engaging in is consensual, and not sexual assault. But, the question is, did these students receive this message early enough? Continue reading “Consent and Sex”

Porn Taught Me Everything I Know About Sex

By Sam Kennedyimages (1).jpg

Yup, you read the title right. I’ve learned everything there is to know about sex because of porn… just like everybody else.

Pornography has become a teacher in today’s society, thanks to the internet and the increasing use of the “sex sells” attitude within the media. But are we learning the right things from porn?

Continue reading “Porn Taught Me Everything I Know About Sex”

Sex Workers in Relation to Science Fiction: Should the Sex Work Prohibition End?

 

 

 

Amber Atalaya Evans Pinel

When it comes to prostitution, our society only has two types: “low class” minors and women smuggled or coerced into the business by pimps, or “high class” escorts (consenting adults) who accompany the social elite. But even the escorts on the arms of politicians are highly taboo. It’s considered a scandal to be caught with a sex worker, and it’s even more of a scandal to be a sex worker.

I reckon this is the reason we have such a problem with human trafficking (the kidnapping and smuggling of women from other countries into the U.S.) and domestic minor sex trafficking (DMST) in the United States. In this country we treat every sex worker as scum. And, if they don’t live in certain counties in Nevada, we treat them as criminals.

DMST is “the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for the purpose of a commercial sex act “where the person is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident under age 18.”” The average age for victims of DMST is 12-14, and they are often runaway or throwaway children. Even though these victims are minors, they are often arrested for prostitution and tried as adults.

Science fiction almost always has a way of looking at social situations in a different light. In the popular SciFi television series Firefly, a mismatched crew of civilians and former soldiers travel around on a Firefly-class spaceship named Serenity. The crew bounces between different planets and moons on the outer rim of civilization in order to find work, legal or not. However, one occupant of Serenity not only has legal work, but she is a revered member of society. Her name is Inara Serra and she is a registered companion–a sex worker.

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As a companion, Inara was formally educated and trained at an academy in a variety of subjects including fencing, dancing, hand to hand martial arts, psychology, music, and languages. In the universe of Firefly, companions are not just legal, they are respected and revered as members of the social elite. Companions select their own clients and provide sexual services as well as emotional companionship and sometimes psychological care. There is a great deal of ceremony that goes into a meeting with a companion, including tea ceremonies. Disrespectful clients are blacklisted and refused service from all companions, and they may also face punishment under the law.

If the United States had a system for sex work similar to Firefly’s companions, I believe we would see a decrease in the illegal forms of prostitution and the negative impacts those forms have. We would see a decrease in sexually transmitted infections and diseases (STIs and STDs). We would see a decrease in domestic minor sex trafficking and the human trafficking of foreign citizens. We would also be able to ensure that sex workers were educated on safe, sane, and consensual sex with an emphasis on thorough sexual education. Sex work is one of the oldest professions known to humans, and when practiced by knowledgeable, consenting adults it does no harm to our society.

Prohibition does not work for many thingsalcohol for starters. When the United States passed a constitutional amendment prohibiting the manufacture, sale, and distribution of alcohol, there was a significant rise in illegal alcohol trafficking and related gang activity. The prohibition of sex work in the United States has had similar results; it has not prevented illegal prostitution, and it has encouraged gangs and criminal organizations to take over the market.

By legalizing sex work and enforcing sex education and safety regulations on the profession, the United States could reduce illegal activity and decrease the amount of trafficking victims. Sex workers who were consenting, sex-educated adults would be able to legally provide their services. All in all, our country would benefit from a companion system like the one in Firefly.