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Tampongate Takes Over Class Of 2016

Meet your future medical students, investment bankers, and, as of last night, period pundits. Early this morning, Bwog was tipped about a heated discussion happening in the Columbia Class of 2016 Facebook group. Last night, CCSC Student Body President Ben Makansi, CC ’16, posted a Google Doc titled, “Reasons Why Pads are Necessary in Addition to Tampons,” as a way to “crowdsource” the evidence that CCSC apparently needs to provide Health Services. As some commenters pointed out, it seems odd that Health Services of all places would need to know the various reasons that menstruating people use pads instead of tampons (and vice versa), considering that Health Services is supposed to be familiar with the concept of menstruation. All this comes after CCSC made free tampons available to CC & SEAS students.

You can read the full Facebook thread below, complete with doubts about male privilege, shoutouts to Bwog, and more than a few memes.

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  • Clare says:

    @Clare Free tampons? How progressive. In Europe, people have universal free medical care; legal, cost-free abortions; paid maternity and paternity pay; and, with the exception of the UK, free university tuition. So this is pathetic.

  • Myron Crapp says:

    @Myron Crapp You entitled Ivy League brats………There is nothing for free in this world. The sooner you get that, the sooner you will learn to make it in the real world!

    Your parents will end up paying for your “free tampons” with higher tuition costs.

    As for male privilege, here’s one for you, I am the parent of a MALE student who will have to subsidize your “FREE TAMPONS”

  • anon says:

    @anon As a former 2016’er who no longer attends Columbia, this is the kind of stuff that makes me put my head down and look away in shame. I have no place to say what should or should not be provided to students – after all, I no longer attend. To me, Ben’s post seems like a 100% honest and genuine attempt to become a more informed individual and help represent Columbia students.

    Instead, a silly conversation on privilege and victimization happened. Why does everything that the student population does need a victim? Every time I hear about something going on at Columbia, it’s always segment of the population pissed off at another. I understand the power of having meaningful dialogue on pressing issues such as rape, discrimination, etc. But seriously, fighting about something like this? I just don’t get it.

    Don’t think Columbia is always a bubble bordered by Broadway, Amsterdam, 120th street, and 110th street. People from the outside CAN and DO see what goes on, and frankly, it’s embarrassing. Columbia is held to higher standards. Act like it.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Just want to say as someone who voted for FLF that I would never vote for Ben again (would still vote for Viv who I think has done good work, though). I still agree with their message, but feel like he has tried way too hard to take credit for the successes of CCSC and has created further discord by displacing blame when there have been failures. It’s disingenuous, rude, and insulting to both CCSC members and the people who he *claims* to advocate for but still dismisses every chance he gets

  • WAKE UP says:

    @WAKE UP To Emily and Jillian/Dakota/Ecem–

    Y’all should be ashamed of yourself. Not only can we track your mean, personal comments, but you have made direct, personal attacks against Ben’s girlfriend AND Chayenne. That’s not cool. You turned what was sensible criticism by Amy Zimmerman into a personal matter to show off your own agenda.

    I know this won’t get through your thick skulls but I’ll try anyways. 1. People at Columbia do NOT respect you. While all of you sit behind your computers, the rest of your class is watching you make a fool of yourselves.
    2. More importantly, you are putting on such a bad reputation for DG.

    Yes, we get it, you’re offended by the op-ed on sororities. But girls in DG are now embarrassed to be your sisters! Stop acting like you give a flying fuck about tampons. If you cared so much, your suite mate Jillian, who is a university senator, could have done something! Many of us are still waiting to see if she gets anything accomplished in student council since she was elected two years ago ….

    Bottom line- people see through you girls. It’s about time y’all reflected on your behavior.

    1. wut says:

      @wut “No one at Columbia respects you”? Okay, this is too far. Now you are pulling an Emily and trying to lump/ attack people together.

      The only one commenting is Emily. The only one pretending to be other people is Emily. The only one all up in Bwog is Emily.

      I’m always down for a good troll but this comment is just over the line. No one attacked people on bwog but Emily tbh.

    2. Wow says:

      @Wow I find it so sad that Emily not only personal attacked people anonymously but also managed to get people even remotely associated with her intertwined with her nasty, mean girl ways/ drama. Her secret motivates to attack Ben and his friends became even more apparent when she faked names and identities to bash her own classmates (did you not know about track comments…?).

      Yo emily, grow up. How privileged must you be to do something like this and get others involved by association.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous lol ecem/jill/dakota/emily made probably total 7 comments on a thread more than 50 comments long…. why are you focusing on them as opposed to jessica or amy who posted SIGNIFICANTLY more

    sounds a liiiitle personal, people.

    1. Hi Emily again says:

      @Hi Emily again Track track track track track (Rihanna voice)

      Emily- you have lost your commenting privileges and stop trying to loop in other names to cover the fact that you commented a billion times under different names/ identities, now THAT sounds personal tbh

  • Emily says:

    @Emily ok but like we should like discuss like maybe consent like? #DGtilidiebetchezzzzzz

  • Jonah Hanig says:

    @Jonah Hanig I’m just a little ambivalent about the whole thing…do barnard AND columbia need to do this? That just seems a little far fetched

    1. Telegram from 1972 says:

      @Telegram from 1972 There are women at Barnard AND Columbia? Seems a little far fetched, if you ask me

  • Batman says:

    @Batman not to be ignorant but why can’t girls just use toilet paper when they get their periods???


    @ITALYIRELAND What’s a tampon? Can I have one?

  • - says:

    @- #StandWithEmily

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous HAHAHA okay this is funny, A+ trolling

    2. ITALYIRELAND says:

      @ITALYIRELAND love you so much

  • Fellow DG says:

    @Fellow DG I promise that the rest of the sorority is not equally unreasonable. None of the girls involved in this debacle have ever held a position in the chapter – there is a reason why.

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous I never will understand why coward people talk shit about others in bwog comments anonymously. Do you get joy sitting behind your computer snickering while you attempt to troll someone just because you don’t like them? Like I’m legitimately asking. Does it help you overcome your own insecurities that you take time to write a comment and be rude?

      Shoutout to bwog for encouraging this petty comment section with tmz style journalism.

    2. one more thing says:

      @one more thing they weren’t even close to the most active on that thread/ didnt mention ben

      especially ecem just said “we’re on our periods”

      ..what’s going on ppl, y u care so much

      also “debacle”? this is a comment thread, not a war…i think we’ll all live

  • millie says:

    @millie i love going to barnard

  • Dude says:

    @Dude So I don’t know a lot about tampons but it seems like cardboard ones are uncomfortable for girls. Why would we want students who can not afford the better kind of tampons to be uncomfortable? It’s weird that girls are being called privileged because they are advocating on behalf of low income students. Shouldn’t like everyone have a good tampon?

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous are you “emily” or a “dude” tho? – track comments is important here!!

      1. Class of 2016 FB member says:

        @Class of 2016 FB member hey those things don’t need to be mutually exclusive. I’d ask you to refrain from making assumptions about our peers’ gender identities tnx

    2. Actual dude says:

      @Actual dude This comment is so funny, how I love you track button,

      I also love the fact “Dude” has just assumed guys know nothing about tampons, I’ll have you know we’ve done our fair share of supporting girlfriends, as often as every month

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous Some guys have, but I can assure you a lot of us don’t know much about them.

    3. lmao says:

      @lmao “advocating on behalf of low income students” ummmm who designated you to speak for us??? isn’t that the whole point of what ben is doing….to actually amplify the voices of those whom this initiative most affects instead of purporting to “speak for us” without actually consulting us? because that IS privilege

      nah we don’t need rich pepl to speak for us thank u very much. nor am i gonna complain about free tampons lol

    4. LOLLLLLL says:


  • Mike says:

    @Mike This is why I’m voting for Trump.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Clickbait

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous It took a male to get free tampons at Columbia.

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous Ben has had a history of not crediting Caroline and even his own board members with ‘his own’ initiatives. Someone came to him and suggested it to him, it wasn’t his own idea.

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous OK, sure. Minutes show who actually speaks up at meetings, and members can credit themselves on the updates doc, but somehow Ben is looking over their shoulders and taking it for himself?

        Get real.

  • Ivy League priv says:

    @Ivy League priv I’m usually the first person to criticize those who call young college students oversensitive/too PC/sheltered, but….

    This is the shit our critics have gotten right. we should be thrilled that Columbia is providing people (bc not only those who identify as women have periods!) with free tampons, 3-ply toilet paper, condoms, laundry, what have you. cardboard applicators and pads are not necessities in the same way that, say, lead-free water is a necessity. or heat. let’s all check ourselves before our first reaction to getting provided free shit is outrage

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous We pay 60k/year. I’d rather have toilet paper/tampons/condoms provided than shiitake mushrooms and kobe beef in the dining halls or shitty ‘sleep kits’ than no one uses. Don’t tell people to check their privilege for basic sanitary supplies just because you think that we should feel lucky to have lead-free water. Schools with a fraction of our budget have significantly better amenities for students (i.e. health care, gyms, dormitories).

      1. Lol says:

        @Lol Truly, the track button is the gift that keeps on giving

    2. hey says:

      @hey while I agree with most of your points, I’m not sure students asking for pad options in addition to tampons is some kind of luxury.
      I think the applicator question is detracting from what the main issue was to begin with, and I think students have legitimate reasons for wanting pads in addition to tampons.

  • Engineer says:

    @Engineer Why hasn’t Caroline Park said anything? she’s ESC president, a woman, and collaborated with Ben on this so I’m not sure why she’s chosen to sit quietly? This isn’t the leadership we voted for

    1. Obvious... says:

      @Obvious... She obviously didn’t put much work into this effort… hence why she’s not commenting. It’s pretty obvious Caroline isn’t as productive in ESC as members of CCSC are.

    2. Orrrrrr says:

      @Orrrrrr Caroline has been working just as hard as the rest of them but didn’t want to engage in an already-overwrought conversation. Why on earth would you think that just because she’s not argumentative that she’s not productive?

    3. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous Oh chill out Matthew Sheridan

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous I always think you shouldn’t be nasty to be people in the internet because you being nasty to them might be the thing that sends the over the edge. They might quite literally kill themselves because of your flippant comment. It’s like smiling at old people when you walk past them on the street; that might be the only smile they get that day. Or that month. So it’s always worth it, even if you don’t feel like smiling. My grandma used to say “a smile costs nothing, but is worth so much”. And I like to live by that idea, both IRL and on the internet.Some of the people on here are truly fragile; remember that. The comment you give them on here might be the only interaction they have all day. So make it a positive one.

        1. Serpent says:

          @Serpent Except Matt Sheridan never seems to follow this rule himself and loves to belittle people so that he can soothe his own damaged ego.

          1. Matthew Sheridan says:

            @Matthew Sheridan Lol that wasn’t me. I do admit my ego is very damaged over my current lack of a Bacchanal ticket =(

  • #notallCCSCmen says:

    @#notallCCSCmen Leave Ben alone!!

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Ben, please stop asking for my opinion on issues that affect me! I find this “representative democracy” and inclusivity stuff to be really oppressive.

  • crowdsource me says:

    @crowdsource me I’ll tell you why diva cups are necessary and convenient

  • WOMAN says:

    @WOMAN “CCSC made free tampons available to CC & SEAS students” aka not Barnard

    i am a barnard student and a woman and i’m here to say SUP

    1. Uhhh says:

      @Uhhh Probably because you have a separate health services department? I’d follow up with SGA.

  • just get everyone a divacup says:

    @just get everyone a divacup it’s the way of the future. probably cheaper too.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Insider tip from another member of CCSC: Apparently Health Services did not ask Ben to “crowdsource” information about the merits of Pads in addition to Tampons. Seems like he was just trying to cover his butt after the diversity initiatives fiasco with BSO by seeking input from all “pad wearing students.” LMAO this kid really needs to watch what he says on public forums.

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous is it better to have one or a small group of women on the council speak for the entirety of women at columbia? i think he was doing the right thing by crowdsourcing and trying to incorporate the wide variety of opinions on the matter held by the female student body.

      rather than have a token woman contribute under the guise of incorporating the views of the women at this school he tried to get a feel for as many of the views as he could.

      1. but then says:

        @but then how would said group be able to claim credit and pad (no pun intended) their resumes?

        1. Anonymous says:

          @Anonymous I think this is the crux of it. Quote Ben: ‘I had this idea over winter break.’ See also not crediting Caroline on posts he apparently wrote with her.
          Not trying to do a number on ben’s character in particular, that’s just the way CCSC and everyone in it works

          1. damn daniel says:

            @damn daniel you are right on the money. This deserves more upvotes y’all.

      2. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous This is so stupid. WHAT was Ben hoping to accomplish with his survey that captured “the diversity of opinion” for why women need pads? Was he hoping for unique/personal responses such as:

        “Um hi, I like pads because they make my vagina feel comfortable.”
        “Hi, I like pads because sometimes I spot with tampons and ruin my pants.”
        “Hi, I like pads because tampons remind me of all the sex I’m not having. :( ”
        “I like pads because they feel like a diaper and bring me back to the happier days of my youth.”

        The reasons for which women wear pads are fairly straightforward and could have been easily researched/delegated to a small task force. It’s actually fucking hilarious that people think pad preference is a complex issue meriting a survey of women at Columbia.

    2. Uhhh says:

      @Uhhh lol track comments

  • Class of 2016-er (who did not participate in the Tampongate debate) says:

    @Class of 2016-er (who did not participate in the Tampongate debate) *waiting for another debate to start in the comments section of this post*

  • Anon says:

    @Anon Amazing to me how much this whole DG crew of Ecem, Jillian, Dakota and Emily suddenly care about this as if they’ve been crusading for tampons and pads to be available for the past 3.5 years when I know for a fact they are still gonna go out and buy expensive ass tampons. Also taking into account how little thanks they gave Ben for actually doing something, I suspect they are still ticked off from the sorority stuff that Ben’s girlfriend brought to light, and kind of using this as a way to get to him and her.

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous Or they are women who care about women’s health and the manner in which it is discussed by our representatives?

    2. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous Do not forget Emmeline Amy and Caitlin who are all part of this “DG crew” you mention disparagingly. Props to anyone and everyone who spoke their mind on this issue, calling for variety and equal access. On both sides valid points are made in regards to cardboard versus plastic versus applicator less. I guess women want variety. Sounds like women can guess some women aren’t scared shitless to speak up after all. I think calling for options for women is a valid cause to rally behind. Also check the comments, Ben is not mentioned in the majority of these screenshots. Sounds like this conversation isn’t really about men, but more so how “entitled” some men feel women are to basic products. Regardless of the assumptions people make of the personal lives of these commenters, focus on the real issues, not personal attacks ✌️

      1. happy big little week!!!!!! says:

        @happy big little week!!!!!! RUSH DG!

      2. 1 more thing says:

        @1 more thing dont ignore jessica, marlee, chayenne, karissa- all of whom contribute important elements to this discussion, and even comment more frequently…especially dont ignore amy zimmerman who sparked this meaningful conversation. it’s more than just whose comments you choose to zero in on. look at it entirely, not just focusing in on 4 women.

        1. Chayenne says:

          @Chayenne feel free to ignore me lol

          as long as I’m getting those free tamps and my diploma y’all

          1. Anonymous says:

            @Anonymous yeah…always ignore chayenne lol
            she’s either trolling or dumb af

          2. wut says:



    3. but then says:

      @but then Is that really why they did this? If that’s the case, I’m glad they showed everyone in the class how petty they are to be playing these stupid little gender-baiting games of faux outrage. Even with their sisters all liking their comments, they still got drowned out by the majority of people who thought what Ben was doing was fine.

    4. Emily says:

      @Emily hi – Emily here – I don’t need to be called out my an anonymous comment on Bwog. if you read the thread, I (unpublished here) complimented CCSC on the initiative, though said there was room for improvement. my primary concern was about WHO decides what health services funds at Columbia, and WHY are they making CCSC advocate for pads when there is a wealth of available information concerning the health/religious/comfort-related reasons that women wear pads. as a woman, it seems obvious to supply both. why isn’t it obvious to ‘health services’ at an ivy league institution? seems like some administrative bullshit. I agree that Ben’s original language was problematic, but that’s not the issue I raised.

      1. Pls explain says:

        @Pls explain Honest question: why is it obvious that health services should provide tampons? This is a school, not a drugstore, after all.

        1. Hello there says:

          @Hello there Because they supply condoms shiitake mushrooms free Hershey kisses shitty mints shrimp free stress balls and water bottles ear plugs free shirts at basketball mania free beenies free beer wine and soft drinks at Lerner pubs and tons of other items that are seen as more important and not luxurious. I think if you bled uncontrollably out of your dick every month you might understand how expensive it can get and how ridiculous not covering them can be.

        2. read again says:

          @read again The “obvious” factor is why pads AND tampons are necessary if the goal is to make ‘sanitary supplies’ available for women. Many women refuse to wear tampons. Thus, failing to provide pads, in addition to tampons, would not accomplish the goal of the initiative. It would be like providing free burgers to low-income students with the knowledge that many would not be able/willing to eat them due to religious, moral, or personal preference.

      2. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous #trackcomments

        1. Hello there says:

          @Hello there accurate !

      3. Not in DG but... says:

        @Not in DG but... “hi I don’t need to be called out my an anonymous comment on Bwog”… and yet if you track your comments, you’ve commented 8 other times under other names like “Anonymous” and “Dude” and “Not in DG”, including the comment in which you personally attacked Ben’s girlfriend anonymously. Get over yourself Emily.

        1. Thomas says:

          @Thomas Burn

    5. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous I don’t know what ‘DG’ is, but I can only assume it stands for ‘Dumb Girls.’

    6. Not in DG but know these people says:

      @Not in DG but know these people Is it just me, or is it really obvious who made this comment? (hi Ben’s girlfriend). Way to A) ignore the other students who also participated in the discussion, B) credit Ben for the entire initiative, and C) make assumptions about the financial status and vaginal preferences of your classmates. It’s wrong to paint women as petty because they have an opinion on the words and actions of the CCSC President.

      It’s not like a mob of offended sorority girls were attacking Ben. Also, aren’t like all of those girls also on student council? Maybe that’s why they had an opinion?

      1. Lol says:

        @Lol Track comments…

      2. :/ says:

        @:/ Emily, the comment you made with your name (regarding who decides what’s necessary) was totally reasonable. Even this post makes sense! Like you’re right, the DG girls should not have been personally attacked here. But by clicking the track button, everyone can see you keep falsely assuming different identities (“Dude,” “CCSC Insider,” “Not in DG”). Stop. It’s just embarrassing at this point, and very much does come across like you have a personal agenda.

      3. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous Emily you are a genius. Do you not realize if you press track comments it links all the posts by the same person?
        Smart, let me just screenshot this and send :)

      4. LOLLLLLL says:



  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Did Health Services ask, or is Ben just asking before going to Health Services? It sounds like the latter, which is really stupid. If Health Services asked, that’s one thing, but I highly doubt they did; there’s no reason people should have to justify choices about their body in detail for CCSC to advocate for them.

    1. Columbian says:

      @Columbian Ben obviously thought that to do his job of representation he should hear what other women (in addition to the one who planned this with him) had to say, including their arguments. If he hadn’t they would have angerly said he thought he could mansplain an experience that wasn’t his to health services. All the people who made this a privilege issue are just awful. He’s not asking you to justify anything to him, he’s asking to hear thoughts on what he has to justify to the administration.

    2. He did ask health services first says:

      @He did ask health services first Bwog didn’t publish this comment but this is more context that Ben provided in the thread, in response to the “Yeah I’m just sort of offended by the notion that women have to justify what goes in vaginas” comment:

      Ben: “The reason I asked that is because that’s the distinction health services expressed to me in deciding what they can fund, because they have to draw the line somewhere. For example, the “convenience” vs “necessity” distinction is why they are supplying tampons with cardboard, and not plastic, applicators. Similarly, they don’t buy expensive condoms because they are “convenient” and not “necessary.” In short, it’s not a question of justifying what goes in/near vaginas as you say, but a question of justifying that Columbia should fund it.”

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous Actually no, Health Services did not ask Ben to explain why students needed pads. Ben did this preemptively in the event that they did ask. The “survey” was his own decision, no one asked him to do it.

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