The following reflects the majority opinion of the editorial board.
ASG is engaging in some safe government -- and we at The Student could not be prouder.
Will Ziegert, ASG's secretary for on-campus affairs, announced during Senate last week that there are condoms being sold by the university: "Go check them out!" The particular prophylactic now offered in both residence hall vending machines and in Emporium is a three-pack of Trojan ENZ condoms -- with premium lubricant, for you contraceptive connoisseurs.
The sale of contraceptives by the university is a big step for Miami and a significant achievement for student governance organizations like RHA and ASG (maybe it's not their magnum opus, but it's pretty good). Together, these two organizations are pushing sexual health initiatives: RHA is focusing on increasing access to feminine hygiene products on campus, while ASG is encouraging safe sex.
Previously, the university held out on selling condoms in marketplaces and vending machines because it could turn off tour groups, said Ziegert to ASG senators at their Sept. 12 session.
On the contrary, the new offering comes off as a mature way to address the fact that unprotected sex happens way too much on college campuses. Around 15 percent of the sex had by college seniors is unprotected, according to a researcher at NYU. We shouldn't need to tell you why that's bad.
And if your parents don't like seeing condoms in the school's marketplaces, maybe it's time to have the talk. Seriously -- you're out of the nest, flown the coop, and we at The Student hope we're beyond the whole 'abstinence-only' thing these days. It doesn't delay the onset of pregnancy and doesn't encourage people to use contraceptives when they inevitably do it -- and that's a "when," not an "if." It happens.
So don't worry, Miami -- we're really into it. Condoms don't make students have more sex, the science says, they simply make existing sexual activity safer and less STI-prone. That's a plus.
They're not even that expensive, either: For $3.35 at Wells Hall's vending machine, you can get a three-pack of pretty average condoms. On walmart.com, the same package costs $2.94. Considering Miami's markets are only called mark-ets because of their crazy mark-ups (a $4 Kroger pumpkin costs $14 at McCracken Market), a 12 percent markup for sexual health products is really not screwing us over that hard.
So, we really mean this, cross our hearts and hope to avoid pre-graduation pregnancies: Good job, Miami. This is an impactful step in the right direction for treating current students like adults and looking out for our community's health.
There's a direct causation between condom use and the fact that Miami students still need tampons. RHA has you covered though: They're distributing a survey and pushing the administration toward making feminine hygiene products more accessible.
Tampons are expensive, and they're generally used by females. It's effectively a tax on vaginas, and that's not fair. They're also easy to forget and pretty hard to conceal, which can get you into some sticky situations. Do you see people carrying toilet paper around? Wouldn't that be embarrassing?
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Do the right thing, Miami. You can empower more than half of the student body -- and plus, all the people who care about equality.
What can you, as a normal but empathetic student, do? First of all, you can take the RHA survey about feminine hygiene products that closes next week. You can take it no matter how often you use tampons.
Also, you should wear a condom. What's $3.35 compared to the cost of another Miami tuition...for your baby?!