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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

The less you wear, the less you drink

Published: November 3, 2006
Section: Opinions

Although its true that many people, especially females, claim that they need to drink in order to remove clothing for a dance whose cost decreases in tandem with the amount of fabric worn to it, I consider the implication of that statement false. Even if people needed to intoxicate themselves in order to loosen their inhibitions and take it off, they were probably a lot more careful about how much they drank that night than any other. When nudity is involved, the exposed parties have higher levels of awareness and make it a point to protect themselves. When a guy comes up to a girl at a naked dance, for example, the girl is more likely to reject, since she knows the potential abuses that may happen in this scenario. Guys know this and, for fear of being brushed aside, attempt to be as civil as possible when approaching, and dancing with, a girl in this situation. Ironically, the naked dance is actually the safest place for a female to be. Whether or not you agree with that logic, I would like to continue on to another subject, and that is one of alcohol. One of the reasons the Less You Wear dance has been placed in moratorium is according to university officials due to the level of alcohol-related problems arising as a result of that evenings pre-gaming. The university makes this argument by pointing out how many BEMCo calls had to be made and how many people had to be escorted out of the dance.

Here is my challenge: Would we rather have people pre-game and get sick in a public area, where administrators will definitely contact emergency personnel, or would we rather have people stay in their own dorm rooms with friends, drink more than they would during a pre-game session (since theyd be drinking the entire night, not just previous to the dance) and get sick there- where their fellow friends, afraid of reprimand, will be less likely to call BEMCo? I argue that its safer for a kid to get alcohol poisoning in front of adults than with fellow kids who, more times than we like to admit, will take a chance and NOT call BEMCo.

Eliminating the Less You Wear dance is not only ridiculous because of the fact that
people have their own clothless parties in their own dorm rooms, and not only because people drink before ALL kinds of events (as I have mentioned before, I got drunk before seeing The Scottish Play– does that mean we should cancel Shakespeare?), but because drinkers are safer when they are around adults. It is better for the community if faculty and staff witness the effects of alcohol and call BEMCo than if the problem is hidden in the secretive dorm rooms of students and with less of a likelihood that victims of their own stupidity (i.e., those who think they can drink vodka as though it were water)– or of peer pressure, hazing or other kind of forced alcohol consumption– will receive the help they need. So what should we do with this Less You Wear dance? As I have said about the Voices of Palestine Exhibit: reinstate it.

The university claims that this year not as many of the profits were used charitably.
Fine, then make that the caveat, that we need to give a greater percentage of proceeds to charity. Fine, I agree. Fair enough. But other than that, were set. Lets reinstate the dance and keep our students activities public. Not only will they act more civil when under the watch of authority, but they will also be a great deal safer.