Social media yesterday and today is alight with with outraged BYU fans over what happened with Cam Rising on the McAffee Show yesterday which included a vulgar reference and then a vulgar chant from the college kids there. Do I approve of it? No, but also BYU has no one to blame but themselves for what has happened.
So for those of you who are older and not tracking what happened in the online universe here is a quick little primer… and admittedly I don’t understand much of this myself.
There is an influencer online with a massive following who claims to be LDS and part of a larger influencer crowd. A year or two ago controversy erupted with claims of a new kind of infidelity that nobody in the world had heard of before called ‘soft swinging’. Basically it was spouse swapping but not going all the way in a failed attempt to stay within LDS religious requirements. The internet went ablaze not with the news of cheating, but in this bizarre concept concocted by these influencers and it was joked about for a much longer news cycle than is common in social media these days.
Soon after, as certainly people started to dig deeper into this weird phenomenon the concept of ‘soaking’ came up - which has been rumored and joked about for a long time at BYU. Soaking is apparently a way to have sex without actually having sex thus not breaking the Honor Code and other abstinence outside of marriage requirements for members of the LDS faith. You could debate whether this is really happening or not, but I would say that what is certainly true is that BYU students and other young people of faith have been searching for loopholes since the dawning of said requirements.
However, this one was SO bizarre that it even was featured in major news sources like the NY Post and even internationally. And for most of the world jokes about it haven’t stopped since and have became synonymous with BYU and the LDS faith.
Before they came to Utah people on McAffee’s show were joking about this and joking about ‘LDS Friday’ or something. Basically it was inevitable that a joke about ‘soaking’ was going to come up in the show on Friday.
Enter Cam Rising who is being interviewed and of course someone asks him about ‘soaking’. After they kept pushing him about it Cam basically says that is something that happens at BYU, not Utah… and then the students broke out in the chant.
Now, I’m LDS, so don’t take this as an attack on the faith. I don’t condone the chant, but the fact remains that Cam wasn’t attacking BYU and they weren’t living ‘rent-free’ in his head - he was asked about a cultural phenomenon created by BYU, that I guarantee you every college-aged kid in the US knows about. What Cam said is probably the most benign thing he could have said and while I think the chant was classless, I also think there is maybe one college campus in the world that wouldn’t have had a similar chant at that moment - and for that one campus the chant probably would have been ‘Frick Utah’.
The only thing BYU sports and their fans have going for them at the moment is manufacturing outrage and controversy. There were BYU fans that were offended that Whittingham went sleeveless yesterday and they are deeply hurt each time he doesn’t pause to shower praise on his alma mater - so that should give you all the context you need to know.
Today featured on the homepage of Cougarboard is this little gem I’d like to title, “You don’t need to give more reasons for your FIL to not like you…”
But that is the backstory to ‘soaking’, why it was brought up, why Cam responded the way he did and why the chant broke out.