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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Letters to the editor:

Published: October 17, 2008
Section: Opinions

To the Editor:

If you ever have trouble explaining the stereotypical Brandeis student to someone, just forward them this article. After reading Jordan Rothman’s piece about the benefits of celibacy [the Oct. 3 article entitled “Voluntary Celibacy”], I couldn’t help but hope that this was somehow satirical.

There are two main issues with the author’s arguments, other than the sheer absurdity of the premise.

First, Rothman argues that, since many people are unsuccessful in their hookup attempts, everyone must have such difficulty and, therefore, nobody should even bother. His only empirical evidence of this phenomenon is provided by his admission that “EVERY one of my efforts was met with failure.”

As unfortunate as this may be, and as difficult as it may be for Rothman to comprehend, just because the author could never “get the girl,” doesn’t make it so for the rest of us.

Additionally, would Rothman argue that if one is performing poorly in class he or she should just drop it? Now, if Rothman had attempted to simply tell a cute, amusing anecdote of his experience at Brandeis, that would be perfectly fine.

But to base the argument that people should not pursue sex on the fact that Jordan Rothman could not get sex is ridiculous.

Second, the author seems to be equating the pursuit of girls with the myriad other extracurricular activities in which he has participated.

Before I go further, I must commend Rothman on his extraordinary achievements – it is truly impressive – and if he feels that his giving up on girls was the key to these, then more power to him.

However, the two are not mutually exclusive. It simply does not take that much time. Most people can participate in activities, join clubs and even win awards while chasing girls at the same time.

Even Rothman would likely concede that back when he was actively pursuing girls it did not consume all of his time.

Instead of following Rothman’s advice, if anyone was considering it, perhaps it would be wiser to avoid applying logic, especially shoddily constructed logic, to matters of the heart. Look at Rothman. He’s a smart guy who has a lot of awards and ‘resume filler’. I’m sure he’ll spend the rest of his life getting more of the same and hopefully that will bring him fulfillment. But you can only attend

college once and I recommend taking full advantage of it.

– Eberardo Hippo