Hookup Culture and the End of Sex

Apparently, today's youth no longer know how to have good sex on account of they're having too much sex.

end-of-sex

The Atlantic published David Masciotra‘s “The Real Problem With Hooking Up: Bad Sex” yesterday, but I gather it was not intended as an April Fool’s joke.

The first part of the analysis, echoing the article title, rings true:

The often discussed, much maligned, and occasionally defended “hookup culture” bears a name that perfectly captures the boring, lifeless, and dull sexuality that dominates the lives of too many young Americans. It is mechanical, technical, and instrumental. “Hooking up” sounds like something people in a bedroom would do with a desktop computer or DVD player, not something they would do with each others’ bodies. It is a term belonging to machinery, not humanity.

George Carlin said that “language always gives us away.” The term “hookup culture” turns the electrifying mystery of romance—powered by the surge of a smile from a stranger across the room, the heat generated by hands on an unfamiliar set of hips on the dance floor, and the sweet synchronicity of flirtation—into the predictability of an oil change.

In her important, wise, and brave new book, The End of Sex: How Hookup Culture is Leaving a Generation Unhappy, Sexually Unfulfilled, and Confused About Intimacy, Donna Freitas, scrutinizes, analyzes, and criticizes hookup culture after spending time on several college campuses interviewing thousands of students about sex, romance, and the social pressure to conform to a culture that, in her words, promotes and produces “bad sex, boring sex, drunken sex you don’t remember, sex you couldn’t care less about, sex where desire is absent, sex that you have just because everyone else is too or that just happens.”

While perhaps overstated, a culture that promotes one-night-stands as the preferred mode of sexual relations has downsides that, while perhaps unfathomable to a horny 19-year-old,  are rather obvious from the standpoint of mature adulthood. But Masciotra and Freitas take this to absurd levels:

I teach literature courses at the University of St. Francis just outside of Chicago, and I’ve noticed that students rarely even flirt on campus (a big change since I graduated college in 2007). Freitas told me that she ends every course she teaches with a plea that students, in future classes, “try to look up from the laptops and various devices once in a while, to notice that there was a professor talking to them, and potential friends and romantic partners sitting in the room with them.”

Are we really to believe that college students have stopped flirting over the last six years? To be sure, smart phones have gotten a lot smarter since then and there are iPads and other really cool technology that didn’t exist in 2007. But none of the apps I currently have installed have rendered women less desirable. Granted, I went to college before 2007. Way before 2007. But they still have women in college, right?

Freitas’s work is important because it offers a third way toward sexual independence and autonomy in an America caught between Puritanism and pornography. Rather than morally condemning college students for promiscuity or telling them to treat romance with the detached analysis of the headhunter, she is promising them that better sex—more fun, excitement, and intensity—is available if they only invest more of themselves than their genitals into the experience.

Freitas writes that hookup culture is, perhaps, above all other things, “ironic.” “While being sexually active is the norm for students,” she claims, “the sex itself becomes mechanical as a result of so much repression of emotion.” She goes onto argue that “college is supposed to be a time when young people get to let go of repression” and that doing so would enable young people to experiences sex that is “good, empowering, and pleasurable.”

Somehow, I just don’t think this is going to be a long term problem. Human beings have been having sex since at least the 1960s, quite possibly longer. I think this generation will figure it out, too.

UPDATE: Amanda Hess reports that the whole “hookup culture” is overstated.

[S]tudents on college campuses aren’t actually hooking up that much. Sociological Images‘ Lisa Wade, who has researched hookup culture extensively, has found that “between two thirds and three quarters of students hook up at some point during college.” Since the term “hookup” can include everythingfrom just kissing (where around 32 percent of college hookups end) to intercourse (40 percent of hookups), that means only that college students are engaging in as little asone makeout every four years. One study found that among students who did hook up in college, 40 percent did it three or fewer times total (less than one hookup a year); 40 percent did it between four and nine times (one to two hookups a year); and 20 percent did it ten or more times. Less than 15 percent of college students are engaging in some form of physical contact more than twice a year. It’s unlikely that the solution is for students to have even less casual sex.

Freitas isn’t the only one who falsely believes that casual sex is “obligatory” in college. Students themselves routinely overestimate the number of hookups their peers are having. In one survey conducted at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, 77 percent of students reported that their peers are hooking up more than they are. Wade found that student misconceptions about college hookup culture began even before they set foot on campus, thanks to “media portrayals of college life” courtesy of gross-out movies, Girls Gone Wild, and journalistic accounts like Freitas’. And it’s not that college students think their sexually-active peers are cooler than they are; half of students look down on people they think hook up too much. Many of the students who are casting a negative view of “hookup culture” aren’t actually taking part.

I am disappoint.

FILED UNDER: General
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. matt bernius says:

    Are we really to believe that college students have stopped flirting over the last six years?

    As someone who spends a lot of time around them, trust me, they haven’t. It’s just that they’ve changed the mediums in which they flirt.

    Freitas makes the usual mistake — assuming that computer mediated communication means that students are ignoring each other. Chances are a lot of her students were using their various means to talk about her — and blatantly flirt with each other — why she was giving these sermons about how they should talk to each other more.

  2. JKB says:

    Old people are so funny. “You kids stop doing what I did because I regret it’

    I think I’ve commented here before, back in the early ’90s a 20-something worked for me who made a profound observation, “The Baby Boomers grew up to make everything they did illegal for their kids to do.”

    Seems folks have come back to the notion…

    She goes onto argue that “college is supposed to be a time when young people get to let go of repression” …

    I suppose they don’t teach irony in college anymore. A college campus is not a place let go of repression, unless she means in the context of letting go of the old repression pushed by fuddy-duddy parents and take on the new politically correct, speech code enforced, protest the speaker repression of the college campus. Oh and the kids get to pay for the new repression by wasted class time as the prof goes off on some Prog rant or assigns the students to do lines on why some Prog idea is the bestest and only valid idea in the whole world.

  3. Tsar Nicholas says:

    So this Freitas woman graduated college in 2007 (I have whiskey bottles at home which are far older and far more experienced) and now is a recognized authority on sexuality and attendant cultural issues and mores? Geez. We really are doomed.

    Speaking of which, from what I’ve seen of the Millennials with rare exceptions they’re severely lacking on all fronts, most notably work ethic, basic education, tact and maturity, ergo to the extent they’re trading quick and cheap sex for good sex that’s the least of their problems.

    That so many of them will be long-term if not semi-permanent or even permanent wards of the state or wards of their parents is far more of a pressing concern. That there’s not a chance in hell they possibly could support the Boomers’ much less the Boomers’ and then Gen. X’s entitlements is the most pressing of concerns, albeit for obvious reasons not altogether cognizable in chattering class circles.

  4. James Joyner says:

    @JKB: Have you ever been on a college campus?

  5. Argon says:

    The distribution is still skewed with a small percentage of people having a lot of ‘encounters’ and many partners and most having much fewer. I don’t see today’s youth being any more or less f**ked up about relationships than any other generation. It’s a messy phase for most.

  6. KariQ says:

    @JKB:

    Doesn’t sound like the colleges I’m familiar with. Granted I’ve only taught at two of them, but they were both in California so you’d think that I’d see this here if it exists any place.

  7. Hardcastle says:

    While I agree that some of the conclusions here are overstated, I also think there’s quite a bit of truth to what she’s said about hook-up culture and the routinization of sex. I don’t know if that’s a problem inherently, but I think it is a symptom of a culture that shuns relationships, which might be a problem in the form of emotional immaturity.

    I do think this is a development that stems from the changing social norms about gender. On one hand, there is the liberation argument put forward by Rosin in her piece. But, there’s been plenty of stuff written about how educated, professional women outnumber educated, professional men now, and that these women are struggling to find male peers to build relationships with. I wonder if part of this culture descends from that, where relationships are shunned in favor of hookups because equal partners are so scarce. Why bother going through the traditional courtship practices when you can’t find someone on your level (if you’re a women) or you don’t have what most partners are looking for (if you’re the average college-aged man) or even further, you’re a scarce commodity and can have your pick (a young educated, professional man)?

  8. john personna says:

    @Argon:

    Indeed. And “socially awkward penguin” is a thing.

  9. Argon says:

    @James Joyner:
    Heh… Dang kids! Get off my lawn!

    There are plenty of slackers in every generation but I certainly don’t see the current kids working less hard than any other recent one in the past half century or so. They’re less likely to wear ties (thank the FSM in his noodlely goodness), but otherwise many seem quite motivated.

  10. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:

    Actually, I think irony would be a brainwashed old dude ranting about brainwashing.

  11. michael reynolds says:

    When I first saw the headline End Of Sex I assumed naturally that this was a post about marriage.

    Hey-oooo.

    But seriously, folks, you think a generation raised on Twilight books doesn’t know about flirting? And staring longingly? Staring longingly a whole lot? Like constantly? For thousands of pages and hours of movie?

    I believe this is about round 19 of “The kids are going to hell with their sex, drugs and rock n’ roll.” At least in my lifetime.

  12. JKB says:

    @James Joyner:
    @KariQ:

    So you are saying that all the reports of speakers being shouted down by student protesters, professors declaring certain views not permitted in their classes, Christain and conservative groups being harassed or not permitted to form, etc. are all lies? Surely, someone would have made that point earlier?

    Or are both of you basing your comments on sexual repression? But even in that context, are those who choose not to partake in the promiscuous environment left alone or are they labeled. It is just as repressive to put pressure someone to be lascivious as it is to condemn it.

    But to answer the question, it has been a long time since I spent time on a college campus and even then, being poor, my time on the campus was spent trying to improve my employment prospects. Which worked by the way. But I did miss the “college experience”. I had a powerful need to eat so my spare time was spent acquiring the means for food, clothing and shelter.

  13. Franklin says:

    Freitas writes that hookup culture is, perhaps, above all other things, “ironic.”

    @JKB:

    I suppose they don’t teach irony in college anymore.

    Are you suggesting that she used the word wrong?

    And then there’s this oddity:

    @Tsar Nicholas:

    [blah blah blah, but no mention of irony at all!]

    What is this, backwards day? At least you mentioned the “chattering class”, otherwise I might have died of shock.

  14. anjin-san says:

    @ JKB

    I had a powerful need to eat so my spare time was spent acquiring the means for food, clothing and shelter.

    And it’s very clear that after all this time, you resent college kids that don’t.

    Get over it. Unless you enjoy being an aging, bitter, white dude.

  15. rudderpedals says:

    Ms. Frietas, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

    But none of the apps I currently have installed have rendered women less desirable.

    Download your free copy of iCastrate today!

  16. J-Dub says:

    @Tsar Nicholas: Judging from most of your posts, I doubt you have any whiskey bottles that are more than a few hours old, unless you count the empty ones.

  17. Barry says:

    @michael reynolds: “I believe this is about round 19 of “The kids are going to hell with their sex, drugs and rock n’ roll.” At least in my lifetime. ”

    It’s round 19-a – ‘kids are —-ing like animals’; the -b series flips this to ‘kids are celibate these days, unlike Evul Hippies’.

  18. Barry says:

    @rudderpedals: “Ms. Frietas, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. ”

    It depends; sometimes it is (I’ll leave that to you to figure out).

  19. JKB says:

    @anjin-san:

    No resentment, I don’t romanticize college though. I guess I wasn’t assimilated into the tribe.

    But what I do find amusing is the constant parade of academics who contrary to a wealth of evidence come along to profess college is a place for open discussion of ideas or to throw off repression, etc. The one thing not permitted on today’s college campus is freedom of thought or speech.

  20. anjin-san says:

    @JKB

    No resentment

    Please. It drips of off every comment you make on college.

    I did not start college until I was 35. I tended bar during the day, slept in my car for 15 minutes, gulped coffee and went to night school. It was not a cakewalk, and the late start has caused me to be a lot less wealthy today than I might have been.

    That being said, I am grateful that I made it to college at all, and to those who had an easier go of it than I did, I say “good for you, hope you had a lot of fun on the way”

  21. KariQ says:

    @JKB:

    I don’t know what reports you’re seeing, so who knows if there’s any truth to them or not? I have found that when I investigate these reports of harassment of Christians, denial of freedom of speech, and the like, that the actual events are not like the scare headlines, so you should be a little more cautious in believing them.

    I can, however, say that I’ve never seen or heard of anyone on any campus that I work at being denied the right to speak based on religion. I have never seen or heard of Christians being persecuted or harassed. And frankly, you’d be hard pressed to determine my or my colleague’s religion or political beliefs from the content of our classroom material.

    I also find that there’s a lot of pressure on the girls to not be overtly sexually active and there is still some degree of social disapproval from other female students to women who violate this too obviously. There’s an assumption of some level of sexual activity if the girl is in a relationship, from what I gather, but there is still a sense that they shouldn’t be involved with more than one partner at a time. It’s mild disapproval, but the word “slut” hasn’t been retired and it isn’t a term of praise even in this generation.

    (and, in passing, I note that I self-consciously bounce between “girls” and “women” in my post. I guess that’s appropriate since most of my female students are somewhere between the two as well.)

  22. Dave says:

    @JKB: I had only one very liberal professor in all of my undergrad. Now it may be because I have a degree in a hard science that sort of philosophy never came up. However, I did have several far right leaning professors because they told everyone all the time. Since then I couldn’t begin to guess at the political affiliations of any of my professors and my students likely couldn’t guess mine. There is one simple reason for it, it doesn’t pertain to the material. So cry all you want about the chattering academic classes liberalizing all of our youth and just silencing their right to _______insert WASPY claimed injustice here________ all you want. Anyone who spends a good deal of time on campus will probably not see much of anything. And if you get one or two in 4-5 years of college, taking 5-6 classes a semester it would appear this is a minority regardless of what the “fair and balanced” news you get from The Blaze of the DC tells you.

  23. Scott says:

    As a parent with a new college graduate and more on the way, I know a lot of these kids. The sentiments I hear about their work habits, social habits, study habits, etc, I just don’t see. As for their social life, I still see my son still lose his ever-loving mind over the latest girl and I still see him obsessing over when he’ll find the “right” one. I do remind him that sometimes that waiting to respond to texts, facebook, and other social media is OK and that patience to allow a relationship to develop is required and desirable.

  24. rudderpedals says:

    @Barry:
    It’s more a gentle suggestion to engage in some introspection in case the failure to observe is confused with absence. I do think romance is less likely to be noticeable from the lectern with everyone hidden behind laptop panels.

  25. mantis says:

    @JKB:

    But to answer the question, it has been a long time since I spent time on a college campus

    It shows. Your only knowledge of the modern college campus comes from rightwing rageblogs and radio hosts. You don’t have the first clue what you are talking about, but what else is new?

  26. Neil Hudelson says:

    I’m 28. I graduated college when I was 23. And really, the college ‘lifestyle’ usually doesn’t end as soon as one graduates. What I’m saying is that I’m all of about 3 years removed from the “hookup culture.”

    I think the author is just not properly emphasizing the important word.

    The hook up culture is bad for GOOD sex.

    The hook up culture is great for good SEX!

  27. steve says:

    ” The one thing not permitted on today’s college campus is freedom of thought or speech.”

    Certainly was not my experience and has not been the experience of my kids. I ask them. I have met quite a few of their classmates. Not true for them either.

    Steve

  28. grumpy realist says:

    I think bad sex has always been around. Where do you think the term “pity f*ck” came from?

    If there’s less romance around, it’s probably because college kids have less time. How many are studying their asses off, desparately worrying about getting into grad school/med school/law school or put in all those internships that might give them a leg up on getting a job?

  29. michael reynolds says:

    So half a dozen people with direct, personal knowledge contradict JKB. Chances that he will change his position? Non-existent.

  30. Dave says:

    @michael reynolds: Sometimes when I’m indoctrinating my students by making them read Marx or cast write-in votes for Eugene Debs, one of them just doesn’t get it. JKB might just be that student. Sometimes you just cut your losses with that student and continue to stifle their rights so I can go on a tirade against the free market instead of teaching them biochemistry.

  31. Tom Meloth says:

    @JKB:
    I walked a mile to the bus stop when I was kid. Uphill each way.

  32. Andre Kenji says:

    @Hardcastle:

    On one hand, there is the liberation argument put forward by Rosin in her piece. But, there’s been plenty of stuff written about how educated, professional women outnumber educated, professional men now, and that these women are struggling to find male peers to build relationships with. I wonder if part of this culture descends from that, where relationships are shunned in favor of hookups because equal partners are so scarce

    I don´t buy that. It´s common to see women that are teachers or liberal professionals marrying carpenters, cops or firemen. A well educated woman can and will marry a man that never went to college. My experience here in Brazil is that a really classy and well educated woman always has a good husband on her side.

    For several reasons women are more likely to keep bad relationships than men, but Hanna Rosin seems to be so out of reality that she never figured out that what she calls “The End of Men” is a horrible thing for women.

  33. JKB says:

    @Tom Meloth:

    What a dumb ass, you should have taken the same bus home instead of getting off at the bus stop at the bottom of the hill on the way home.

  34. Andre Kenji says:

    @grumpy realist:

    If there’s less romance around, it’s probably because college kids have less time. How many are studying their asses off, desparately worrying about getting into grad school/med school/law school or put in all those internships that might give them a leg up on getting a job?

    I don´t know US university campi, but several studies and anecdotal evidence contradicts that. The idea of US universities as country hotels is not so far from reality from what I can see, I might be wrong, I don´t know.

  35. Andre Kenji says:

    Umberto Eco once compared sex to soccer, because in both a few people practiced it while the rest limited themselves to watching it. I think that he is right.

  36. An Interested Party says:

    So you are saying that all the reports of speakers being shouted down by student protesters, professors declaring certain views not permitted in their classes, Christain and conservative groups being harassed or not permitted to form, etc. are all lies?

    Pity the sad, downtrodden, heterosexual, white, Christian male….life is just so horrible for him…

    Judging from most of your posts, I doubt you have any whiskey bottles that are more than a few hours old, unless you count the empty ones.

    You are being far too kind…it is far more likely he stumbled over empty bottles of MD 20/20 and/or Thunderbird to type that tripe…

  37. jukeboxgrad says:

    Someone should mention what Woody Allen said about this: “Sex without love is an empty experience, but as empty experiences go, it’s one of the best.”

  38. Rafer Janders says:

    @Neil Hudelson:

    And really, the college ‘lifestyle’ usually doesn’t end as soon as one graduates. What I’m saying is that I’m all of about 3 years removed from the “hookup culture.”

    Um, I’m a middle-aged man in New York City.The hook-up culture is alive and well here among men and women in their 30s and 40s as well.

  39. Argon says:

    @JKB:

    But even in that context, are those who choose not to partake in the promiscuous environment left alone or are they labeled.

    Left alone for the most part. I was labeled a ‘chem major’, so that pretty much ruled out a promiscuous environment… not that a little promiscuity wouldn’t have been appreciated but there were stereotypes to uphold. Peer pressure is a bitch at that stage of life but I wouldn’t be surprised that with more openness about sexuality comes more acceptance of those choosing not to nail anything that moves.

  40. al-Ameda says:

    The only people who want the ‘end of sex’ are Republicans
    (with the exception of Mark Sanford, that is)

  41. Argon says:

    @Rafer Janders:
    Yeah but those who continue that behavior into their fourth and fifth decades kinda have a ‘hard’ look about them. By then it’s ‘Welcome to the Hotel California’ time.

  42. Rafer Janders says:

    @Argon:

    Um, not really. Lots of people have a hard look about them about them in their fourth and fifth decades. If you wan to avoid that, you’ve just got to moisturize and get plenty of liquids and sleep….

  43. JKB says:

    @Argon: I wouldn’t be surprised that with more openness about sexuality comes more acceptance of those choosing not to nail anything that moves.

    As it’s all about anecdotes today, I’ll tell you that the ones I know of don’t support your assumption. In fact the opposite occurs. Such as a friend who was out on a field camp on a remote island with a mixture of students and others doing work on seals. She got grief and called a prude because she chose to wear a bikini whereas others chose to save on laundry. In fact, her thesis adviser for her graduate program came by to her tent to discuss her thesis stark raving naked. Now, i never saw this man naked but I saw enough to know I didn’t want to. Nothing untoward I was told, just a bit uncomfortable. Like your prof airing himself out during office hours. But the fact is she was made to feel outcast for daring to wear a skimpy bikini instead of letting it all hang out in the sand, bird guano and flies.

  44. Dave says:

    @JKB: Let me guess he went by her tent naked to: talk about how wrong Jesus was and thus her religion, to tell her how wrong all white men were and thus silence her voice, to tell her how great the sexual revolution was and how the hippies had it right all along, or the fact that if you see someone naked doesn’t mean you have to have sex, therefore your argument doesn’t make sense. And also if you were right every strip club would be a whorehouse. But seeing someone naked might as well mean you’ve had sex so how dare they choose not to have sex with anything that moves, they were naked around her. Great anectdote you sure proved everyone wrong there.

  45. Keith Humphreys says:

    Human beings have been having sex since at least the 1960s, quite possibly longer.

    But that would mean…my parents must have…oh God noooooo!

  46. @JKB:

    So you are saying that all the reports of speakers being shouted down by student protesters, professors declaring certain views not permitted in their classes, Christain and conservative groups being harassed or not permitted to form, etc. are all lies? Surely, someone would have made that point earlier?

    You do realize that for every example of a speaker being treated rudely there are 1000s of other cases in which speaker spoke and no one reported on it because the speech went off without a hitch.

    And I guarantee you that Christian organizations thrive across the land.

    You are taking a handful of incidences and treating them as if they are the norm.

    This is like saying all US Presidents have been black because, well, the current one is.

  47. JKB says:

    Miss the big picture much? It isn’t that counter examples can be supplied. The issue is that when a speaker is shouted down, when a Christian or other organization is denied, etc, occurs it is rarely condemned by the professorate or administrators.

    It is less about the specific incidents and more about silence of those who then amusingly claim that universities are “places of open discourse” or a place to throw off repression.

  48. C. Clavin says:

    I didn’t get far too into the article quoted…because it read like it was written by someone who has never “hooked-up”.
    I notice this a lot about blog posts.
    Somebody with a forum decides they are an expert on something when they clearly are not.
    I’m a big fan of Ylesias…but some of his posts on Urbanism and Architecture, in my profesional opinion, are way off base.

  49. C. Clavin says:

    “…when a Christian or other organization is denied…”

    I would have to understand the specific circumstance…but the fact is that much of what christians believe is absolute hooey…and has no place in legitimate discourse.

  50. Dave says:
  51. MBunge says:

    @C. Clavin: “I’m a big fan of Ylesias…but some of his posts on Urbanism and Architecture, in my profesional opinion, are way off base.”

    MattY isn’t a moron, but he is a great example of how relatively smart people with above average educations fall into the trap of thinking they can bullshit their way through subjects they really don’t understand.

    Mike

  52. al-Ameda says:

    @JKB: I attended UC Berkeley in the late 60s/early 70s and I can tell you that there were no free speech problems of any kind in my econometrics, applied statistics, calculus series, German, international economic development, monetary Chicago Theory economics, and series theory and linear operations courses.

    Some people hold on to stale stereotypes. Time to update your view of what is going on at college these days.

  53. mantis says:

    @JKB:

    The issue is that when a speaker is shouted down, when a Christian or other organization is denied, etc, occurs it is rarely condemned by the professorate or administrators.

    Because you say so? By your own admission you don’t have the first clue what is going on on college campuses, so I have no idea why we should think you have any knowledge beyond the very limited look at things your rightwing rageblogs and radio hosts tell you.

  54. @JKB:

    The issue is that when a speaker is shouted down, when a Christian or other organization is denied, etc, occurs it is rarely condemned by the professorate or administrators.

    Funny, it is my experience that, in general, professors and especially administrators like to have guests to campus treated well.

    But what would I know about college campuses and the professoriate? After all, all one needs to do is to generalize from a handful of examples in a vast universe of experiences to understand the real story, right?

  55. mantis says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    Funny, it is my experience that, in general, professors and especially administrators like to have guests to campus treated well.

    Indeed. It’s an embarrassment when a small group of students decide to disrupt a guest event on campus. It takes away from the purpose of the event, which is usually a collegial debate or lecture, and it makes it harder to invite future guests, who may not want to appear at a campus where guests are treated poorly. Administrations hate it when that crap happens, not to mention the students and faculty who usually work to organize these events. Most colleges bring dozens or hundreds of guest speakers and lecturers to their campuses every year, and as you rightly point out, almost none of them are disrupted in the way JKB thinks happens every day.

  56. matt bernius says:

    @JKB:

    The issue is that when a speaker is shouted down, when a Christian or other organization is denied, etc, occurs it is rarely condemned by the professorate or administrators.

    Good god man, stop digging a deeper hole. Have you never heard of Campus Crusade for Christ?

    In the last decade I’ve spent extended periods of time on three university campuses and visited countless others. I can tell you that I’ve yet to go to a campus where — based on advertising or interactions with students — Christians have not been welcomed. In fact, if anything, the presence of Christian groups has been growing on campuses for years, even in the “secular” northeast.

    Stop talking about crap that you clearly don’t know the first thing about.

  57. matt bernius says:

    @JKB:

    The issue is that when a speaker is shouted down, when a Christian or other organization is denied, etc, occurs it is rarely condemned by the professorate or administrators.

    Oh, and I also want to note that on at least two campuses I’ve been on, there have been incidents where a Christian student was offended by lecture content and took their complaints to the administration. In both cases the administration did call the professors in question in for a discussion of what had happened.

    So, in answer to your anecdotes of persecution, I raise you two anecdotes of the administrators actually doing something about it.

    Any other straw-men you want to bring up?

  58. grumpy realist says:

    @mantis: Yah, we used to get them at the school I got my Ph.D. from.

    One of my friends used to sharpen his teeth on them. Start asking these kids questions about what’s actually in the Bible and you can push them off the edge in no time.

  59. stonetools says:

    I’m betting that there have been incidences of Christians being treated poorly on campus. I’m also betting that there have been incidents of Marxists being treated poorly on campus. ( I also bet that JKB doesn’t give a hoot about bad treatment of Marxists).
    The issue whether the authorities tolerate such maltreatment. I doubt they do.

    Have you never heard of Campus Crusade for Christ?

    Bingo.
    And Youth for Christ. And the Navigators. And Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship. And Campus Life. And whatever youth organizations the Catholics and the Mormons no doubt have.
    Most elite universities have a thriving Christian subculture. It’s not all Animal House all the time out there. And that doesn’t even include the explicitly Christian colleges.

  60. Argon says:

    @JKB:
    Oh, for frack’s sake, the overwhelming majority of the private colleges in the US were founded by and continue to be managed in some part by various Christian religious groups.