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Showing their stuff

Confectionary genitalia offered on campus

Rachael Herndon and Allison McGown laughed as they slid their first tray of naughty peanut butter cookies into the oven.

The “Penis and Titty Cookie Cutters” they ordered from Amazon.com arrived just in time for them to start baking the 12 dozen phallic and breast-shaped cookies which the new student group, Students for Liberty (SFL), will give away to UMKC students this week.

“If we do it right, we shouldn’t waste any dough,” Herndon said. “We didn’t use the limp penis because we thought it would be awkward trying to explain it to people.”

Herndon said the free cookie giveaway, titled “Equality is SEXY,” is to promote SFL, a libertarian organization that supports individual freedoms.

The cookies will be given away 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday-Friday this week in Royall Hall.

The naughty cookies will include peanut butter, sugar and brownie varieties to represent the inclusion of all races and ethnic backgrounds.

But Herndon also said the idea for the event came from the Women’s Center, which is selling $2 chocolate vaginas in February to promote the Vagina Monologues and the Center’s V-Day awareness campaign.

Women’s Center Director Dr. Brenda Bethman said she didn’t see a conflict between the chocolate vaginas and penis and breast-shaped cookies.

“The Women’s Center is interested in talking with potential partner organizations to raise awareness about inequality and violence against women and girls,” Bethman said.

A table for the Women’s Center selling chocolate vaginas and other V-Day items will be set up next week in Royall Hall 11 a.m.-1 p.m., although chocolate vaginas can be purchased anytime in the Women’s Center’s Hag Hall office.

The chocolate vaginas, Bethman said, were first sold to promote the Vagina Monologues in February 2005. This year, the Vagina Monologues will be held 7:30 p.m. Feb. 16 and 17 in the Student Union Theatre.

“The Vagina Monologues is used as the centerpiece of V-Day events for many reasons,” Bethman said. “It helps people who have experienced violence heal.  It inspires people, women and men, to get involved in V-Day’s efforts to stop violence against women and girls.  It removes the shame often associated with the word vagina and the vagina itself and instead celebrates the word, celebrates women.”

Herndon and SFL chair Brodie Sharpe said “Equality is SEXY” is designed to expand on, but not to challenge, chocolate vaginas.

“We are taking the idea of chocolate vaginas to the next level in order to promote equality,” Herndon said. “We aren’t being conflicting, but more so, we are expanding on the idea of equality in order to promote this new organization. Plus, everyone likes cookies.”

Sharpe hopes to challenge the notion that diversity is based on group dynamics, such as race, gender and ethnicity.

“Society in general tends to group people together with identity politics,” Sharpe said. “Just because you are a man or a woman doesn’t mean you think alike. Putting people into groups undermines their individual uniqueness.”

“Anyone who signed up gets a d*** cookie, and they’ll be good,” Herndon said. “Anyone who wants to join Students for Liberty can sign up at the kiosk.”

SFL will hold its first meeting Feb. 16 in the Student Union and has also planned a 4/20 rally.

Herndon said SFL will become the first campus organization to invite NORML, a marijuana legalization advocacy group, to campus.

For more information on Students for Liberty, visit www.facebook.com/pages/UMKC-Students-for-Liberty/189898931037382

For more information on the Women’s Center, visit www.umkc.edu/womenc/

nzoschke@unews.com

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