In Defense of the Hookup and my Column

September 18, 2007 at 2:39 pm 1 comment

what many of you blog readers don’t know is that I also write a weekly column for my college newspaper. indeed what I love about this blog is that most of the columns and commentaries I post here are the uneditted versions of those and as such I can be a bit more blunt.
my last column, the hookup piece that is posted below, fueled some nasty comments from readers of the newspaper’s online site. it also sent me some interesting Facebook messages and promoted a very complimentary Letter to the Editor in my defense.
still, I felt my own voice needed to be heard. I just now (read 6 minutes ago) sent the following to my editor in the hopes that it will be publised and my message (and yes somewhat selfishly me own repuation) will be clarified and defended.
below, is that attempt. enjoy.


In the past I have abstained from further comments on my articles. I think most speak for themselves. However, I couldn’t resist defending my September 19 column.

I recently had a friend who, gasp, was a former hookup partner of mine, stop me on Gameday to tell me he didn’t like this past week’s column very much. Everyone he knows engages in hook ups to some degree, he said, I was simply stating the obvious.

The reaction I have received regarding this column, however, speaks to the contrary.

From people stopping me on the street to random Facebook messages, a letter to the editor and a dozen comments posted on the online version of my column seem to signal that my intent on writing the column is justified – people all have opinions on hookups.

My aim in writing the column was two-fold.

For one, I always try to examine an issue that appeals to a large cross-section of students, and I think this does. I find it less than ironic that most of the negative feedback has come from the alumni, while much of the positive reaction has come from currently enrolled students.

I’m not at all saying that there are not important lessons to be learned from the past. I’m a history major who tried to put the whole “phenomena” into context by using an example from our not so distance past.

My own mother (who was a college student during the early ‘70s and is probably my biggest critic) read the piece and thought I had an excellent point, her only substantial comment being that “pu pu platter” was not spelled “puu puu platter,” an error which the keen copy editors at the newspaper thankfully caught.

My second aim is probably more important. I was trying to preach acceptance. I make it very clear that key to the hookup is safety (using condoms, birth control, etc.) and willingness (not being too drunk, not feeling peer pressure, etc.). I do agree that without those essential elements a hookup is not worth it.

Lastly, I want to address those who personally attacked me. Not that I care, but my boyfriend does. You see I am currently in a committed relationship. This article has less to do with my own sexual history and more to do with acceptance of a lifestyle that is very common on college campuses nationwide.

To those who wonder who would marry me, let me reiterate that my significant other knows about my past, I know about his. Perhaps shocking to some, he likes me because of my honesty, open-mindedness and wit and does not chastise me for my past, conscious choices. Truth is they all led me to have a successful relationship with him. Couldn’t many of you alumni say the same? Is a large part of college not experimentation meant to direct the course of the rest of your life?

Perhaps the column was more necessary then my friend (former hookup) acknowledged.

Hookups are part of our collegiate culture; I won’t back peddle on that. Why not try to then lift them from their subversiveness and accept people who engage in all realms of sexual behavior? Once again, safety for one’s sexual and mental wellbeing, as well as that of others, is pivotal.

A healthy attitude regarding sexuality is crucial to our societies success. Everyone engages in sex, it’s what life is, why then do people feel the need to make other’s feel shameful for what they feel or want? The only answer I can think to offer is fear.

Call me a slut if you wish, I truly take it as a badge of honor now. Because if the word slut denotes voicing your opinion, wishing for sexual equality among sexes and being a proponent of all types of sexual lifestyles, then I will proudly wear that title.

Thank you Michael Walker for reminding me why I love my job and why a sex column, which is deemed purely fluffy entertainment by some (and to my own omission sometimes is), is also so important. We all still have so much to learn and discuss.


Entry filed under: being single, college, columns, dating, gainesville, my generation, opinion piece, relationships, sex, uf.

Hookups: Just Another Item on the Sexual Pu Pu Platter? UF student tasered at John Kerry speech

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Matt  |  October 16, 2007 at 3:02 pm

    I agree with your right to publish what you want, when you want. I don’t consider you a “slut” for being sexual, overtly or not, as that’s your right as a human. However:

    “A healthy attitude regarding sexuality is crucial to our societies success.”

    That makes no sense. If one person is prudish and bases sexual decisions on religious beliefs, are they less likely to be successful than someone who does as they please in the bedroom? Absolutely not. While I agree with the value of sex education, I don’t think it’s important that everyone should be comfortable with other people’s sexual practices. It’s a broad and ignorant comment that is completely false, and ruins the validity your entire rebuttal.

    That being said, keep up the good work. I haven’t been able to read as much of your blog as in the past, but it’s always entertaining when I do.


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