Candy and condoms: The perversion of sexuality



Candy and condoms. I found both of these little items wrapped in brightly colored plastic, along with pamphlets about safe-sex practices, in my “Sex In The Sack” goody bag. These innocent-looking brown paper bags were passed out this week to college students around campus in order to promote “Safer Sex Week”– ­­a few days at UK designed to promote awareness of, as I so adorably refer to as“the birds and the bees”.

I chuckled a bit to myself, as I usually do when I’m presented with something so silly as the pairing of candy and condoms. I imagined all the students on campus emptying out the contents of this very special goody bag, scarfing the candy, making a snarky comment to their buddy about “gettin’ some,” and pocketing the condom for a later time just in case “the moment arises.”

This brings up a point. As important as sex is, not only on a personal and emotional level but also on a basic biological level (we must continue the procreation of the species, right?), talking about sex is either an uncomfortable topic, or the punch-line of a joke.

Don’t get me wrong, most of us like to laugh at a bit of dirty humor here and there, but it seems that in the media and among the general youth population today, sex is such a “taboo” subject that we often resort to belittling it with a corny joke.

The use of sexual jokes in comedy is very much an American concept. Although it comes up in other cultures, there is a different attitude towards sex, and sexuality in general in the United States. In a funny way, we have a very “perverted” view of sex.

It is very easy to see that this attitude comes from the media. It is reiterated over and over again by concerned mothers all over the country, who worry that their middle-school daughter will start having sex before she even outgrows her training bra.

The phrase “sex sells” clearly defines the way the media and advertising works. We can’t deny that anyone, male or female, young or old, is more drawn to an attractive model showcasing a product rather than just the product by itself.

It is obvious that these companies want to sell you their product, but that’s not how they get you to spend your hard-earned money. What they are really doing is selling you on the idea that if you buy whatever it is they are promoting, that you are buying your way closer to the satisfaction of your desire.

For instance, if you buy that bottle of Axe body spray (after watching the hot and heavy commercials), you’re subliminally hoping this will attract women to you. Because who cares about charm and chivalry when you can literally spray on a “babe magnet?”

But what does this teach us about sex? That it comes from a product? While it’s true that everyone appreciates a well-kept appearance, in reality these are just material objects that come in the way of our understanding of what sexuality really is.

We are all sexual creatures, and it comes down to hormones and the sexiest organ of all, the brain. What turns me on may not turn you on, but that’s okay because sexuality is a personal thing. We should be able to express our ideas about sexuality without instantly reverting to a perverted joke. If we take the taboo out of sexuality we can start to appreciate the beauty of it.

Sex, and sexuality in general, is a natural expression not only of love but also of the beauty, creativity and diversity of people all over the world. And that’s not something you can wrap in plastic.