Non erat demonstrandum

One of the pundits I usually agree with suggests that one lesson of Tyler Clementi is that sex is a big deal, 4 decades of denial notwithstanding. I disagree with her.

I agree that sex is a big deal. I disagree that this suicide will prove “once and for all” that the sex-is-no-big-deal claim is false.

I agree that Clementi would not have leapt from a bridge had the invasion of privacy resulted in streaming video of him picking his nose. But I also doubt that he would have leapt from a bridge had the streaming video shown him groping a comely co-ed. And I think it’s possible that an openly gay student might have been less outraged (or devastated) than was Clementi, who was by some reports closeted and conflicted.

This tragedy offers pundits, bloggers and mainstream new-spinners a shaky but seemingly irresistible launching pad for lesson-drawing. I offer the link to Jennifer Roback Morse’s flawed argument as in imperfect antidote to the even more flawed, and largely unexamined, premises of the mainstream media.