Students at Cornell University recently passed a referendum (that they sponsored) to provide free tampons and maxi-pads in all campus bathrooms, men’s and women’s. 3,034 of the young intellectuals voted, with an overwhelming 78.6% in favor of “free” (formerly) feminine hygiene products. The “#FreetheTampon” initiative would provide all bathrooms with free menstrual products year-round.
Brown University has already implemented a similar program, so perhaps the Ivy League schools are going in alphabetical order. I’m guessing Dartmouth will soon be voting on its own referendumb.
The new “wisdom” on campus is that not all people who menstruate are women. Come again? Call me a skeptic, but I can’t think of a more clearly distinguishing characteristic. Not all women menstruate, but everyone who menstruates is- by definition- a female. Some women don’t look like women, and I know some are firefighters or box professionally, but if we can’t agree on the menstruation thing, this truly is a country divided. And demented. (A corollary: all those getting abortions are women, too. Sorry to be such a purveyor of traditional understanding, skepticism and non-inclusiveness!).
Many of the cruel and non-inclusive students who voted against the measure expressed concern over the financial burden the initiative would create and the almost certain waste of the products supplied to the men’s rooms, as less than one percent of the population is transgender, with far fewer than that being “males” who menstruate. Many students posted comments on the Cornell Assemblies Elections page.
Some students said that they’d be okay with supplying the women’s bathroom with the free gynecological goodies, but not the men’s rooms. Sadly, they are missing the point of the endeavor.
One student reasoned, “In any situation in which a discussion is being had about a given institution providing some good or service for free, it is essential to first be able to estimate the cost of such a provision prior to implementing it.” Calvinist tightwad.
Another stated: “Having the school subsidize more products leads to an increasing cost for the students to attend…where does the subsidizing stop?” A third remarked, “The school shouldn’t provide other services that aren’t directly relevant or necessary for education.” Where has that clown been in recent years?
Many of those who voted “yes” said things along the lines of, “this is a basic human right, like water or shelter,” and that it’s “ridiculous” and “insane” that they aren’t free already. Insane, you say? I don’t know many people who don’t pay- a lot- for their shelter, and I myself just spent $1.75 for a bottle of Aquafina!
The issue was to be presented to the school’s president for potential implementation.
I’ll close with yet another student’s comment on the proposal, this one succinct and to-the-point: “Seems expensive and unnecessary.”
That it is, my friend, that it is. But who’ll stop the bleeding?
P.S.: “Go red big!” Oops, I mean, “Go Big Red!”