Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Duke's "healthy lifestyle" hypocrisy

Larry Moneta, Duke University’s Vice President for Student Affairs recently applauded Duke for its sponsorship of a porn show at the University. Here’s some of his letter published Feb. 8 in the Raleigh N&O:

… [The] event was sponsored by a group of student educators who promote healthy lifestyles, receiving financial support from the Women's Center, Sexual Assault Support Services and other campus groups. …

[The event] should be perceived as evidence that Duke continues to be a community filled with diverse people and opinions, and one committed to academic freedom and free speech.
So if Duke’s Women’s Center and other University organizations sponsor a porn show, they’re promoting “healthy lifestyles.”

But if lacrosse players hire “exotic dancers,” that’s disgusting according to Duke administrators and faculty who support “healthy lifestyle” shows.

What’s next at Duke?

Will Moneta’s job title now be Vice President for Healthy Student Affairs?

In the next few days I’ll say more about Duke’s support for strippers and other “sex artists.”

For now two items:

Don’t miss Duke senior Kristin Butler’s thoughtful column on the event.

And I thought you’d be interested in reading the following post – This Duke lacrosse commentary deserves a "Hip, hip, hypocrisy" – published May 6, 2006.


Barry Jacobs is the Chairman of The Orange County Board of Commissioners. Orange borders Durham County and includes the town of Chapel Hill and the campus of the University of North Carolina.

Jacobs regularly writes about women’s sports. Recently he sounded off in response to the Duke lacrosse case and made linkages to things liberal/leftists like to call “the larger truths.” Here’s some of Jacobs:
Under the best of circumstances, collegiate athletic competition involving women--most often condescendingly called "ladies" or "girls" by the sports media--routinely commands second-class coverage. […]

The off-field excesses of the Duke lacrosse team (men's) [provide] a dark and hurtful reminder of larger truths about sex, race and privilege.

How must female athletes, black and white, look at their male counterparts after such an episode, or rather how must they imagine their male counterparts look at them?

And, if boys-will-be-boys is tolerated by athletic administrators, where does a woman turn for support? […]
Jacobs serves up a lot more just like that and closes with:
But celebration of the ACC women's transcendent season was cut short by tales of racism, alcohol abuse and alleged sexual assault perpetuated (sic) by male Duke athletes. In this, too, the lacrosse team and its excesses served to victimize women.
Jacobs' piece appeared in the Apr. 12 edition of The Independent, a free, weekly newspaper with strong social and political appeal to the region’s “progressive community.”

The Independent survives on advertising revenue. Some of it comes from restaurants, bars advertising happy hours, book stores, and such.

But a lot of The Independent’s revenue comes from what Jacobs could tell you is a special niche market. The Independent pretty much has the market to itself because most other publications avoid it if they can.

I wish Jacobs was here to tell us what he calls the market. We’ll just have to do with a few examples. These ads are from the Mar. 29 Independent:
TRAVELING HOTTIES

Introducing five brand new co-ed hotties to your area for the next three weeks only. Check out our pics online. Offering one-of-a –kind two girl shows. In or Out. Call: XXXX (no contact information will be provided in this post)

XXXX (ad title is also an internet address)

For the best of exotic dance, massage and entertainment try our ladies. Also selectively hiring
There are a lot more ads with titles such as BIG, SEXY & READY and PARTY, PARTY, PARTY. There’s even one that claims it provides “schedules, reviews & profiles” of other ESCORT SITES.

The Indy, as Jacobs calls it, has pages of ads with photos inviting readers to TRY IT and contact LOCAL DATELINE which bills itself as CASUAL, INTIMATE, and JUST FUN.

Speaking of bills, the ads often remind readers to have a Visa or Amex ready.

If you’re in Durham or anywhere else in the Triangle you can pick up a copy of The Indy most anywhere. The Indy must have at least 5 distribution points at Duke, including one in the lobby of the Bryan Student Center. Duke undergrads are a major target group for most Indy advertisers.

The Indy’s very popular at Duke. The other day I must have seen about 10 copies of it on desks and tables at the Divinity School.

In fact, it wouldn’t surprise me to learn the lacrosse players who hired the exotic dancers found their contact information in The Indy.

I’ll bet it wouldn’t surprise Jacobs, either.

Now a little advice for all of you. If you’re ever speaking before the Orange County Commissioners, for goodness sakes don’t slip up and call a group of women "ladies" or "girls."

You know how mad that makes Commissioner Barry Jacobs.

For Commissioner Jacobs everybody get up and shout, "Hip, hip, hypocrisy!"

I’m emailing Jacobs a link to this post. I’ll let you know if I hear anything back.

If you’d like to contact Jacobs his email is: barry.j@mindspring.com
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URL to full text of Jacobs' article: http://www.indyweek.com/gyrobase/Content?oid=oid%3A30272

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Just curious, John, did you ever hear back from Commissioner Jacobs?

RedMountain said...

Thanks John, I believe I see it now. Pure hypocrisy, as you say. Afterall, how can we shrug off the hiring of strippers for pure titillation as a "boys will be boys" moment, and then get terribly bent out of shape over a group of strippers who present an Art show with some social statements about sex and lifestyles.

Jim in San Diego said...

SWAS is nothing more than "Travelling Hotties" with a smart marketing manager.

Most people recognize when someone has put lipstick on a pig. Duke Women's Studies, and the administration pretend not to, because there are no standards.

Jim Peterson