Fox News on the virtues of 'hooking up'


I am a fan of Fox News. I think Bret Baier's Special Report is the best evening news program on television. Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace is also one of my favorites. As a political and social conservative I also enjoy watching Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity from time to time, understanding that they're expressing their points of view, not delivering the news.

The Fox News website is a frequent source of story ideas for me, and I often come across opinion pieces I wouldn't see elsewhere. But the website's dirty little secret, if you will, is its regular feature, Fox on Sex. In my opinion, a news website has no place providing sex advice, especially when it's frequently explicit. And for an audience that undoubtedly leans in the conservative direction, it seems glaringly out of place. Besides being offensive, it's tawdry and diminishes the website's credibility.

Having just returned from a family vacation, during which I heard virtually no news, I was anxious to catch up. Early this week on the Fox News website's home page (now in the "Health" section) was an article titled "College Dating: To Hook Up or Couple Up?" The author had some suggestions for college students, such as figuring out whether they're "content to happily hook-up or . . . ready to seriously couple-up?"

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For those coeds interested in "hooking-up," sex therapist Ian Kerner recommended keeping it simple: "The whole point of casual sex is that it should require even less time and effort than that Pass/Fail Astronomy requirement you still need to take." Naturally he advised students to "be safe." But he didn't point out that there is no such thing as safe sex, even with condoms. There was no mention of sexually transmitted diseases or the possibility of becoming pregnant.

Also important to Kerner was that students have fun while "hooking up." After all, he wrote, "Hooking up (safely) is a great way to learn about sex, try out new techniques, and express your desires without the fear of being judged by someone you really care about. Basically casual sex is like training-wheels for that future special someone."

Wow. I'm almost speechless. Urging young people to take sex lightly-morally, emotionally, and physically-is reprehensible. For a news organization, it's indefensible.

Marcia Segelstein
Marcia Segelstein


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