John Wesley would be proud

Posted: Sep 02, 2004 12:00 AM

Editor's note: This column contains language that may offend some readers.

If John Wesley were alive today, there is no doubt that he would be pleased with the quality of education students are getting at Wesleyan University (

Just a few minutes on the university website shows that Wesleyan deserves its strong academic reputation. Those U.S. News and World Report rankings just don?t lie.

For example, students at Wesleyan can join the ?c*** club,? which was formed to help reclaim the c-word and imbue it with a new meaning. Some of the 35 original members of the student organization were upset that the word ?vagina? translated to ?sheath to a sword? in Latin. Because of the warlike reference, they decided that ?vagina? would not be as good as the c-word. Se they formed a club, convened a meeting, and sat around saying the c-word all night long.

After the c-club was formed, another Wesleyan student suggested forming a ?kyke club? to reclaim the k-word for Jewish students. The ?dirty Jew k*** bastard club? was also contemplated, but no club was ever actually formed. Thus, to this day, the k-word is still offensive at Wesleyan, but the c-word isn?t. When it comes to important social change, progress is slow. Even John Wesley couldn?t put an end to slavery in a day.

Members of the c-club thought about starting a ?vagina dialogue.? However, some wondered whether a ?penis dialogue? wouldn?t be more appropriate.  The confusion was understandable. In fact, one of the c-club?s founders admitted that she ?didn?t come to Wesleyan and think, ?I want to be a Vagina Warrior.?? But she admitted (in the school newspaper) that she feels like she has since become a vagina warrior. There appears to be a war among some feminists concerning the use of warlike references. I think they should just settle it with a pillow fight.

At the first meeting of the c-club, the group?s aims were stated as ?mak(ing) sure that women?s bodies are safe and sacred, get(ting) a dialogue going on campus, and hav(ing) women (know) how to be pleasured and to pleasure themselves.?

This involved organized (no pun intended) activities aimed at helping c-clubbers find their clitorises (or is it clitori?). They also handed out vibrators on campus, held a sex toy workshop, and brought a masturbation expert to campus. Members also came up with a ?vagina-licious song? (?my vagina has a first name, it?s?? well, never mind) and co-sponsored a ?vagina art party.?

A ?women?s only party? was also sponsored by the group. There, women painted each others? bare chests and (in a strange development) took Polaroid pictures of their vaginas in the bathroom.  The ?Girls Gone Potty? video should be in stores by Christmas. It should be a hot commode-ity. (I wanted to say ?commodity? but I couldn?t flush out all of my differences with the editors).

But, of course, it isn?t fair to judge Wesleyan University by the conduct of a few overzealous vagina warriors.  It is also important to look at various speakers and programs sponsored by the university as a whole. And, not all of those activities focus on the vagina.

For example, one Wesleyan speaker (also an alumna) gave a talk at Wesleyan entitled ?My life as a feminist pornographer.? Co-sponsors of the event from the Wesleyan Queer Alliance informed the crowd that the guest speaker had ?her own signature line of butt plugs.? The school paper said that no other Wesleyan graduate had ever achieved such an ?honor.?

Instead of being a pornographer, this noted alumna had wanted to be ?a dyke activist lawyer for the downtrodden.? But she credits a professor of History (or was it herstory?) and American Studies (what, no hyphen?) for leading her into the pornography profession. You can trust that your children will get wise counsel if they attend Wesleyan University.

In addition to the signature sex toys, Wesleyan?s proud alumna started conducting sodomy workshops after graduation. There, she has even taught septuagenarians how to have anal sex.  People of all ages can depend (pun intended) on her expert anal-ysis (pun obviously intended).

And, of course, the school paper rewards the success of graduates, but only when they have really made it big. Wesleyan?s feminist pornographer was described in the school paper as ?a great model for Wesleyan students.?

Naturally, all of this talk about sodomy and vaginas has raised some concerns at Wesleyan University. In fact, some people in the university community were offended by the notion that having a vagina automatically means that you are a woman. To combat that crazy notion, Wesleyan added a trans-gendered monologue to The Vagina Monologues (TVM).   In the words of the play?s director, TVM ?is supposed to be about vaginas not only women and those two are not necessarily the same thing.?  I can?t believe that I?ve been referring to women as ?vaginas? all these years. I should have gone to Wesleyan!

The student newspaper observed that it was ?fitting? that the inclusion of a trans-gendered monologue in TVM became a ?hot issue? at Wesleyan. The paper saw an important need to correct the ?common misconceptions about the implications of having ? and of loving ? a vagina.?

I don?t know that much about the implications of having and loving a vagina. But I do know that John Wesley would be proud of Wesleyan University. They make me proud to be a Methodist.

Mike S. Adams is the author of ?Welcome to the Ivory Tower of Babel.?   He lives in Wilmington, NC.