Janice Edman

In a recent article entitled “Urban Unrest,” the New Times reported on a group of wily and hyper-offended SLO residents (my description) who want Urban Outfitters – our first cool store in, I’ll venture, a decade – to get rid of their inappropriate book selection.

One mother claimed she was “shocked” at books like “350 Best Sex Tips Ever” and “Position of the Day Playbook,” which are featured on tables amongst clothes racks and the hip decor (I purchased the latter book the second I saw it, for the record).

Although the overprotection and anal levels are off the charts, it just proves a bigger problem that seems to be sweeping the town: SLO citizens are afraid of sex.

I say SLO citizens because most Cal Poly students consider themselves students of the university, living (for a temporary amount of time) in the city of SLO.

We, gentle friends, clearly do not fear sex ” just ask the patient nurse practitioners at the Health Center. Rather, it’s the inhabitants of San Luis Obispo, many of whom graduated from Cal Poly, that get up in arms the second sex enters our small community.

Examples include the brouhaha made over the “racy” displays of lingerie in the Victoria’s Secret windows (for the record, again, I find Victoria’s Secret way too tame for my taste) and the cancellation of the Mardi Gras parade, which flaunted sex and booze.

But why is sex always made out to be the bad guy?

In Grover Beach two weeks ago some wacko killed two innocent men and wounded others before turning the gun on himself in Denny’s. In Shandon, a man was shot three times by an unknown suspect while driving a friend home over the weekend.

Personally, I never heard of anyone taking multiple lives in seconds with their respective genitalia. But no one seems to care when violent movies appear at Downtown Cinemas or video games glamorizing violence sell out at Best Buy.

I don’t really care about the gun stuff myself, but that logically seems like the bigger threat to our innocent children than a book of fun positions.

Now that I’m 21, I feel like I know everything there is to know about sex (don’t we all?). But I didn’t when I was 13, and I don’t believe that 13 year olds should.

Julie Wilson, one of the groups organizers, said kids that age, as quoted in the New Times, “-don’t need to see that stuff,” in reference to the naughty books on display.

They probably don’t need to, but it’s just like the slippery slope fallacy that claims anyone who smells marijuana smoke will enter the gateway and become a smack addict.

A middle schooler leafing through a book on sex doesn’t fertilize the egg, lady.

The oft embarrassing sex talk parents have with children usually involves the phrase, “Sex is a beautiful thing between a man and a woman.”

And any of us who has ever taken a break from the kink knows that slow and loving sex is a very beautiful thing.

So why is it feared? Why would a ten year old care about the lingerie in the window of a store? Why would an adolescent be scarred by seeing a book about how to have good sex?

Therefore I propose a counter protest to the narrow minded folks who demonstrated at Urban Outfitters.

We must present a voice that defines sex as a beautiful and necessary act humans engage in that can even be humorous too.

Go buy those “dirty” books, and tell any child you know: sex is not the enemy.

Janice Edman is an English senior and a Mustang Daily columnist.

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