Prominent sexual activist Sue Johanson does not promote safe sex, but she does promote safer sex.

Johanson, also known as the Sex Lady, is considered North America’s foremost sexual educator and counselor. Johanson led a discussion on sex for UNC-Chapel Hill students in Memorial Hall on Tuesday evening as a part of her college-university tour.

Johanson, a registered nurse who turned 78 this July, has played a vital role in reaching youth all across the U.S. that have unanswered questions about sex. Sue’s guidance, while extremely honest and uncensored, expressed a very strong message to students: they need to be informed and comfortable talking about sex.

Johanson stressed that safe sex, does not really exist unless you’re pleasuring yourself or not having sex at all. Practicing safer sex is not just a choice; it is a requirement for any and everyone having or considering sex.

Johanson has provided thorough sexual education through her lectures, radio programs and television programs for over the past 35 years. She is most well-known for the “Sunday Night Sex Show,” a live phone-in program on the Oxygen TV network.

Tuesday’s discussion was co-sponsored by The Carolina V-Day Initiative, a week of entertaining and informative events for UNC-CH students in which all donations benefit the Orange County Rape Crisis Center. The Center aspires to be part of the movement to end all forms of sexual violence by offering members of the Chapel Hill community free support and therapy after rape trauma.

Johanson’s charismatic personality and obvious interest in sex kept students interested in what she had to say. The most important issue Johanson stressed was safety.

“There’s so much you need to know about sex. Don’t let sex just happen,” Johanson said.

Johanson openly discussed generally socially taboo topics like female orgasms, anal sex, oral pleasure and her thoughts on the best sex toy for financially struggling college students.

Many students at UNC-CH are having sex, but do not have enough information to fully pleasure themselves or their partners. Johanson informed students how to reach optimum pleasure during sex while still being safe.

Opponents of the discussion are appalled with the openness of the topics and the degree to which the topics were addressed. However, this type of sexual education is about developing young people’s skills so that they make informed choices about their behavior, and feel confident and competent about acting on these choices.

More and more college students are participating in casual sex with either the same or multiple partners. Johanson’s guidance should influence students to familiarize themselves with their partners, encouraging each other to get tested regularly.

We live in an environment where sex is thought about constantly: how to get it, where to get it, and whom to have it with; we need to know not only know how to protect ourselves but how to enjoy ourselves.

Johanson provided us with the information to do both.

By Alyssa Griffith