Stanford RAs Ordered to Demo Kissing for Freshmen in Bizarre Consent Lesson

In anticipation of the infamous Full Moon on the Quad's revival, freshman dorm RAs were given an instruction packet on how to demonstrate consent for their residents.

Stanford RAs Ordered to Demo Kissing for Freshmen in Bizarre Consent Lesson

Full Moon on the Quad, a Stanford tradition dating back to 1891, is making its grand return this year. The ASSU student government is partnering with the Title IX office to make sure that the tradition—in which Stanford students come together under a full moon to kiss one another, no strings attached—goes off without a hitch. 

The tradition, which started off with male seniors giving red roses to the freshman girl of their choice, has now turned into a school-sponsored, color-coded kiss-fest for all.

And now, the flower exchange is coming back with a bang. Guidelines given to freshman resident assistants (RAs) obtained by the Review state, “The flower exchange is a consent-application practice. You are encouraged to perform an example of what a consensual flower exchange looks like for your frosh, both with AND WITHOUT a kiss.”

One group of people who were never asked for their consent? The freshman RAs expected to kiss their co-staff. One former freshman RA told the Review that “this is an absolutely terrible, un-thought out idea.”

Imagine being a freshman RA who has had to preach the consent doctrine to a hundred freshmen since September, and then, you learn that the one person who does not need to consent is you, the RA. 

In January 2020, the University initiated a glow stick necklace system for FMOTQ. Those wearing red necklaces would just observe, yellow necklaces were open to hugs, and green necklaces were open to kisses. This year’s guidelines encourage the same system:

The guidelines also note the introduction of white roses, rather than red roses. The guidelines say that, “Instead of the traditional red flower, the white color is a nod to the evolution of the tradition, which will now invite students of all years and gender identities to continually give and receive flowers throughout the night.” Is it not strange that the color of purity is now the color of a flower that you give to someone to indicate your sexual interest?

Worse yet, Stanford is trying to sanitize what it means to give a person a rose! No kids, the Bachelor had it wrong. Giving someone a rose is not a symbol of your romantic or sexual desire. It’s a “token of gratitude.” 

In recent years, Full Moon on the Quad has attracted scrutiny for consent violations. The guidelines given to RAs note that, “Similar to the last few years, this FMOTQ is under pressure to improve problems regarding alcohol consumption and sexual assault, therefore the outcomes of this event are crucial to its continuation for future years. Please keep this in mind when preparing and attending the event.” 

In the same section, “What do your frosh need to know about this event,” the guidelines say that “Nudity will be present at this event. We want to make it known to freshmen that this could happen in order to prevent a surprise to nudity that could be triggering.” [sic]

To combat these issues, the document contains a new “Full Moon on the Quad Participation Agreement” to have students agree to “respect boundaries” and “practice continuous consent.” 

Next year, making out with the guy who gave you math PSET answers will be seen as a Thanksgiving tradition.

Though I thankfully have an excuse to miss FMOTQ (I’ll be visiting my parents), I hope that all Stanford freshmen are empowered to ask one another to kiss, and to cut some slack for their RAs, whose listed job responsibilities did not include making out in front of their residents. 

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