Harold Michael Harvey, JD

The Harvard Crimson is reporting that students at this prestigious Ivy League college can now openly join a kinky sex club with all the rights and privileges of any other campus club. The student newspaper interviewed the founder of the group (Harvard College Munch for Bondage, Discipline, Sadism, and Masochism) who used the name "Michael" in the interview so as to protect his anonymity. He told the paper that the move “shows we are taken seriously.”

Munch was informally organized over a year ago and had been meeting regularly on campus in dining halls without any official recognition until this week, when the Committee on Student Life gave it legitimacy along with 14 other student organizations.

Official recognition by Harvard means that Munch is eligible for funding for meals and drinks at its meetings. It also gets the school over a touchy diversity issue with its leading-edge decision to acknowledge that the Harvard student has a right to discuss straight sex, or gay sex, and now they can discuss what is commonly described as BDSM sex.

Justin J. Lehmiller, a member of the Harvard psychology department and a sex columnist, said he believed students should learn about diversity in sexual behavior.

According to Curtis Rush, a staff reporter with the Toronto Star, Lehmiller argues that the recognition will “… give students who feel outside the sexual mainstream an opportunity to learn that they are not alone…. Sex is a topic that already makes a lot of people feel uncomfortable, and when you add ‘kinky’ in front of it, discomfort increases even further. ”

Harvard is not the first college or university to approve recognition for a BDSM club on its campus. In 2003 Iowa State University gave approval to a group. In the coveted Ivy League, Columbia and Yale have recognized similar groups. Elsewhere, Tufts, MIT and the University of Chicago have approved such groups on their campuses, according to the Atlantic Wire.

What is special about Harvard’s recognition is that Harvard, founded in 1636, is the nation’s oldest institution of higher learning.

“It’s not like these kids are coming together to have sex. They are just trying to open up the discussion about sex on campus,” Nathalie Miraval, a reporter for the Harvard Crimson told the Toronto Star.

According to The Harvard Crimson, Mae, a student member of Munch said, “I didn’t think anyone was even remotely interested on campus (in Kink). It’s a community where you can feel safe and you can feel comfortable talking about (kink).”

What started out as a few students discussing kinky sex over a meal in Currier Hall one day in October of last year has now morphed into 30 kids who have the approval of their university to meet and chat about subjects in which they share an interest, like bondage and cuffs and whips and such, oh my!

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