“Chocolate, condoms. If you’re not prepared you might get caught with your pants down,” Elizabeth Mahaffy, an RC senior and co-chair of Students for Choice Vox, yelled across the Diag over loud music yesterday afternoon.
Three beds and fliers covered the Diag as Mahaffy screamed and distributed condoms as part of the Students for Choice Vox’s first Celebrating Responsible Sexuality: Bed-In on the Diag.
The beds were meant to encourage people to bring their private, “bedroom” issues into the public, co-chair Clair Morrissey, LSA junior said. The Diag is the most public place on campus, she added. The beds also served as an allusion to John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s famous bed-ins more than 30 years ago.
“The beds are really important to the notion of speaking about private life in public,” Morrissey said. “It needs to be done.
“A lot of times sexuality or reproductive health issues aren’t talked about. It’s OK to enjoy being a sexual person. We want to encourage people to take control of their sex life and empower them.”
One of the event’s goals was to empower students and inform them about their contraceptive options and sexual health, she added.
Students could participate in two sexually educational games – sexual trivia and dildo dressing. The games educated students about information regarding the historic lawsuit Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion, as well as the names of important women’s rights activists and how to properly put on a condom. Prizes included water bottles filled with condoms.
“It’s about feeling comfortable,” Morrissey said. “We’re advertising responsible, safe sex.”
LSA sophomore Mark Wadley said he agreed with the group’s overall messages but their tactics, including the condom race, were too much for his taste.
“It was a bit too much for the typical Michigan student,” Wadley said. “It’s a bit disturbing. It’s not informative on what they’re trying to convey.”
Mahaffy said, “We’re passing out information about our group and trying to register voters. … We wanted it at the beginning of the year because this is when a lot of people get involved.”
Some students, including LSA sophomore John Burke said he supported the group’s approach to safe sex.
“It’s their right to hand out in the Diag” Burke said. “If it’s something (Students for Choice) believe in, it’s a good way to do it.”
The group also wants students to start off their year with a healthy start, LSA senior Vera Slywynsky said.