If the proliferation of a well-organized media campaign is any indication, you are doubtlessly aware of the University of Victoria’s Sexualized Violence Awareness Week (SVAW). If you are, or were conversely uninformed, I can only pity you that my humble page of ramblings was to become your first acquaintance with the subject. Regardless, the various student, community, and government organizations surrounding the SVAW are most rightly concerned with the sexual health and safety of the student body. They have however, I must opine, not taken the whole business nearly far enough or in at all the appropriate direction.
For if the intimate wellbeing of the average student is to be properly attended, it can be done only with a variety of forcefulness quite antithetical to the force of those who would do them harm. And in respect to the latter category of person, I write today not of those exterior persons who still too often fail to respect the safety and autonomy of the individual, but of ourselves.
In plain language, I would see the legal age of sexual consent raised, at minimum, to thirty years under federal law — the better that we may be protected from our own darkest impulses. Here, many will balk at the notion of restricting the intimate congress of a gaggle of famously lurid and rambunctious young persons — yet, it is precisely the commonality of undergrad fornication and romantic adventure which has led me to my conclusion.
In this consideration, I first asked myself: “What percentage of campus flirtations and romances lead to happiness or a stable relationship?” The statistics, dearest reader, speak for themselves. Further, how many countless heartbreaks and uncomfortable, lonely walks along the quad after a furtive late-night tryst has UVic borne witness to? It is my earnest intention that such unpleasantness may be averted once and for all. For if the risk of rejection, the pain of heart-rending loneliness while peers go about hand-in-hand, or the discomfort of failed love continue to disrupt the work and academic lives of young people, we would be wise to rid ourselves of the entire bloody business. I accept, naturally, that marriage and coitus in later years are a tragic requirement for the continuation of our sorry race, but I maintain these things should be put off as long as possible.
Against the possibility that the above has not been found sufficiently moving or palatable, I proffer some summary of my own experiences with otherwise avoidable suffering. Countless times while wandering the campus have I met the eyes of one of any number of elegant young women, sharing a smile or a word of acknowledgement. Not ten feet have passed between us walking our separate ways, however, when my heart inevitably becomes downcast; embroiled in the fears that should I again encounter the same young woman, no courage would come to me, and I would be quite incapable of even striking up a conversation, much less requesting a date. I ask you, dearest reader, would not the pains of I and countless other similar souls be assuaged if the damnable affair of romance and sensuality were forbidden to begin with? This is to say nothing of the actual relationships I have suffered, the better I might escape with continued highest dignity.
It is my dearest hope that my words here have not been in vain, and that all cultural mores aside, any unbiased perusal of my proposal will yield hearted, if perhaps solemn agreement. Sexuality and its discussion in public forums remains a dicey concept, I grant, yet I have in mind no more or less than the continued safety and happiness of every student and young person in our fair country, whether they think they want it or not. We are after all, as the maxim goes, our own worst enemy.