tom sanders

By Brittny Peloquin

Leave it to the host of “Loveline” to bring Cal Poly students out of their shells.

Dr. Drew Pinsky, host of the popular late-night radio program “Loveline,” led a discussion about alcohol and sex at the Performing Arts Center Tuesday night.

About 1,100 students showed up to the event, nearly filling Harman Hall.

He prodded students with questions to see if they were really as conservative as their reputation led him to believe. A few had specific inquiries about male sexual performance and the myriad of myths about female orgasms.

But one topic repeatedly came up.

It turns out that alcohol may be more of an issue at Cal Poly than people expected, according to Pinksy. Pinsky related the two topics by asking about the practice of college students getting heavily intoxicated before engaging in casual sexual activity.

“Why do you have to be loaded to ‘hook up’?” he asked.

While few women were anxious to speak into a microphone, men shouted out their answers from all around the hall even before the traveling microphones could reach them.

“Liquid courage!”

“Alcohol is an excuse!”

“It makes it OK!”

When he wanted to know what inspired women to drink before hooking up, men continued to shout out answers, enough so that Pinsky asked them to “shut up for a minute.” However, the women who finally spoke said the reason was to avoid being judged later on by their friends and other female peers, whom they referred to as “society.” Pinsky refuted their claim that all of society was responsible for their shame. He said that women perpetuate their own double standard through gossip and ideas put into their heads by women’s magazines.

“What’s with women’s magazines? (They) drive me crazy,” he said.

Pinsky sorted through the answers and talked about the differences between men and women during their college years. He described the biological differences between the sexes that caused the disparity in motivational priorities behind drinking.

“At this age, more than any other time of life, the biological differences are so profound, and we try to pretend they aren’t there,” he said.

He related it to the trends he sees in questions from the callers to his radio talk show. Men call explicitly about sex and adequacy, whereas women call to ask how to keep men happy.

“Men are calling about men, and women are calling about men,” he said.

After the event, Pinsky commented on the consequences that students should recognize as possible results of risky alcohol use.

“There’s a lot of stuff going on here, and that’s where a lot of unwanted sexual contact comes in; that’s where a lot of STDs come in,” he said.

The discussion gave administrators a better idea of how concerned Cal Poly students are with their alcohol consumption behaviors.

“There were a lot of alcohol questions, which I think is good,” Vice President for Student Affairs Cornel Morton said. “The issues for students are very personal in some ways, but they’re also questions that are on the minds of many students.”

Pinsky told the audience that they all have the capability to make the best decisions about their behavior.

“Learn to listen to that internal voice,” he said.

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