LOS ANGELES—On November 15 and 16, adult film producer Nica Noelle spoke at Yale and Columbia Universities, respectively. At Yale, the talk took place in a lecture hall, with approximately 90 students in attendance—more than twice the anticipated turnout. Organizer Dani Salka called it "an extremely successful event." The Columbia event was more low-key, held in a student center with an all-female group sitting on sofas around the room.
In the days leading up to event, the Sexual Literacy Forum At Yale (SeLF) distributed impressionistic flyers emblazoned with a Rorschach-looking image and asking the question "Why Do We Watch Porn?" On Nov. 11, blogger Alec Torres of the National Review Online commented on The Corner about the upcoming talk, observing with notable snark, "Snacks will be provided at the event."
Taking its cue from NRO, the Washington Times joined the fray the same day with a little ditty titled sarcastically, "Higher Education," which contained the ridiculous observation, "Keep in mind that the yearly tuition at Yale is $42,300. This does not include snacks, room or board, books or personal expenses."
Judging by comments on the National Review site, however, readers had trouble finding fault with the presentation. One commenter yawned, “Another exciting article seemingly aimed at curtailing the rights of free expression and association by consenting adults." Another objected to the piece on conservative grounds, arguing, "So? Is Mr. Torres advertising for Yale? Or is he implying that it's the business of persons who aren't stakeholders in Yale what some private college in Connecticut does?"
Still, According to Noelle, Yale's Dean of Public Affairs, Melanie Boyd, became concerned when it became clear that not only would turnout be higher than anticipated, but there also would be reporters from several campus newspapers present. After a last-minute meeting with students, Noelle changed the format of the talk, to the satisfaction of Yale's administration.
Following the spirited back-and-forth with students. Noelle tweeted, "Yale students deserve their reputation for being the best and brightest in our nation. The future is in good hands."
A great conservative conflagration never materialized.