Filed under: Antibodies, BloggingtheNO, gender pimps, Grab a shovel, Interconnected!, PUKE, rape extinction
Where has our “no” gone? (Trust this will become a huge theme for this blog henceforth)
It’s very difficult to fathom how powerful and incremental one word, one concept, can be to the sexual health and well-being of a civilization yet go so hushed and lost.
At the intersection of power, stigma, and sexual socialization there has been made an incredibly thriving market to the tune of billions of dollars and, what’s more willing worldwide participants, in the celebration-the orgasmic celebration if you will-of no “No.”
And what I am talking about is not limited to rape and sexual assault though they, of course, are some of the darkest manifestations of this. No–I am talking about the ubiquitous, ever-existential, concept of sexuality and how much of our sexuality has been formed on the erasure and undermining of “no.”
In sexual stigma p.1 there were two main points that I wanted to make clear:
1. Consent and sexual readiness has been presented to us, through marketing and media, to be a look-a set of features-embodied by women/girls. Thus creating a situation wherein, if the “look” is present, the sexual meaning is implied. When sexual meaning is implied the first layer of consideration for the women’s interest in being considered sexual by another, as well as her legal ability to even be so, is removed. A layer of “no” is gone.
2. We are being conditioned to find people sexually attractive and ready in way that is supposed to be against our will. From early ages we are presented a set of sexual norms that we are supposed to want yet what we are supposed to *not* want is most sexualized. Thus our capitulation and lack of control is sexualized. Thus we perceive our own responsibility and agency as a bit of a continuum–vulnerable to change given how desirable we find the subject. As the stigmas normalize and mainstream our ability to achieve this same arousing effect diminishes. We are now searching out new sexual ways to breach our own will.
Exactly how many ways can one say Rape Culture?
But let’s not stop there.
Stigma, sometimes called “taboo,” has an even an more problematic function. Due to the language and politics surrounding sexual norms vs. stigma, stigma has become synonymous with liberating/sexual freedom/sexual autonomy. To engage in a taboo/stigma is often seen as engaging in a more sexually free activity. It’s a pseudo-freedom dichotomy: the sexual norms are pushed in a way that is so forceful and exaggerated (by no-fun, questionable institutions no less: schools, religion, family) that by the time someone has gone through all the emotional and psychological , if not societal, shaming to finally partake in the stigma who can blame them for feeling freer?
And don’t get it twisted: we know who bears the brunt of this shaming.
However, the problem here is that we have created a very protected, hot tempered situation wherein no one can really challenge stigmas without being viewed as a censurer/personal-liberties-destroyer. To question the stigmas is to question sexual freedom by default of the norms vs. stigma system. (How free are we really if we can’t even question without being insulted?)
Moreover, the sexual stigma is not viewed (wrongfully) as originating from any sort of institution or official entity–we just say it’s there, it’s how we feel and when asked to possibly locate the origins/roots of this one is often presented with some very sexist primitive science (usually funded by The Right) or told it doesn’t matter, consenting adults, so who cares.
Funny that we, as feminists, often have no problem discussing the origins of the sexual norms adults engage in–most likely because they originate from The Right and we have no quibbles questioning them. Double standard much?
(Anticipated misreading number 1*: I am not saying I anymore agree with the current sexual norms than I disagree with the sexual stigmas–I think the whole system is bunk. My point is to express how these intersecting dynamics destroy so much of what is needed in the foundations of consent.)
The other thing is: stigma is mainstream. As in, it’s mainstream for us to have stigmas. The norms vs. stigma system is the mainstream. But when taboo is spoken about, when people who participate in stigma come forth they are regarded as sexual revolutionaries, as if they are challenging mainstream on a ground breaking level. This celebration means we continue to reward almost any deviating behavior, or make excuses for it, in such a way that removes critical analysis. As well, those who choose to participate in more sexual norms are considered boring, humdrum, or same ole same ole.
(Anticipated misreading number 2*: I do not mean deviating as all bad–I speak of any deviation from the norm, with no necessary value judgment)
What I find so immensely troubling is the defense and/or apologetic attitudes towards systems, ideas, even said “sexual revolutionaries” who defend sexual stigmas meant to control, ostracize, harm, and shame women. Such examples would be the use of terms such as slut, prude, whore, virgin in pornography or role play. Such examples would include rape and/or child rape simulation. Such examples would include sexual practices depending on uneven power distributions.
Now really: If you have to suspend the disbelief that your sexual partner is a child to get off then how invested are you in perpetuating a better consent model? And a world without child porn, pedophilia, predatory behavior etc.
If you have to suspend the disbelief that your sexual partner is a whore/good little girl (re:sexual shaming tactic) to get off then how invested are you in perpetuating a better consent model? And a world where women aren’t categorized, turned away in rape trials, prostitutes murdered without a second glance, etc.
I’ve said before and I’ll say it again and again and again: if you must suspend the disbelief that your sexual partner is not consenting to get off then please tell me how possibly invested you are in a better model of consent.
(Ironically many who are vocal about the harm of rape jokes somehow go quite silent critiquing rape based orgasms…)
If we don’t want the stigma then we don’t want the stigma, right? This two way game we are trying to pull off wherein we want women respected in the general world but must pretend otherwise in the bedroom is pretty unbelievable. What kind of disconnect are we embarking on that says harmful sexual stigmas against women are sooo awful until we decide to be sexual?
“Women are not sluts until you want to get off on the idea that one of them is!”
Nope. Sorry. Failed logic. Not my fault, I didn’t invent the game.
But to the supporters and players and apologists and creators of the game: ps–it’s. not. fucking. working.
*I anticipate several other misreadings should they decide to comment. I will number them accordingly.
Filed under: Antibodies, Grab a shovel, PUKE, rape extinction, YourFundsAtWork
Georgia is stupid. It’s a Red State of all things (for my non US readers read: Republican, George Bush Lovin’, Good Ole Boys).
And Georgia men? Puh– I’ve known enough of them to know the one thing they cherish more than Dale Earnhardt stickers and a mile high truck lift is a virgin (white preferable).
Have you heard? (feministing.com) Sure you have! You know the drill feminists–get out your “I am officially un-rape-able” book–you know the one where you logged the info of all the people you’ve ” ever dated, or engaged in any sexual activity with, including their names, dates of interaction, and contact information.”
According to one Judge in Bibb County Georgia (other county names in Georgia include: Butts, Coffee), this sort of info is pertinent to determine one’s ability to have refused a sexual encounter (even a drugged one!). Your past sexual history can actually prove consent in a future sexual/possibly sexual encounter. Transferrable consent!
Like rollover minutes or something.
Of course the defining factor in this Georgia case is that the young woman was not a virgin. Not only that she had the audacity to accuse a young man on a high rung of the patriarchy: “the son of state Rep. Burke Day, whose family founded the Days Inn hotel chain.”
Maybe the Bibb Judge is just trying to get him a lifetime guaranteed stay at Days Inn? (I love me some Days Inn ya’ll!). For why else would he, after dismissing the woman’s two sexual violence claims on accounta prior hymen removal, also fine her $150,000 for wasting the court’s time with such a second class citizen??
Here is the fine Judge’s info:
Judge S. Phillip Brown
601 Mulberry Street
310 Bibb County Courthouse
Macon, GA 31201
Work Phone: 478-621-6328
Go ahead and send him all that information you’ve been keeping about every single person you’ve ever dated and/or had sexual contact with. Maybe if he already has it on file you will at least avoid the 150K fine.
This post comes from a comment I made at Heart’s regarding sex tort law where Marco Randazza, porn industry lawyer as he accepts, makes a very common case for his First Amendment Crusades (comment section).
I am so shameless that I thought the comment deserved its own post. Not because I am brilliant (the gossip mill tells me so!) but because I think I may have addressed the issue in a way which I haven’t before and I do feel it’s worth repeating.
Mr. Randazza’s comments are quoted. I have copy/pasted directly.
“I’d ask you to show me the “harm” that any of my adult entertainment clients have “inflicted” upon anyone.” &
“in the battle to protect free expression.”
I never tire of my own dismay at these attitudes.
First of all, free expression does not exist. Expression does not exist without a cost–we really need to stop using this phrase, it is harmful in and of itself. Abusive even. We remove too much of our critical sensibilities with the idea of “free” and thus violators and abusers can move covertly in and out of our lives whilst committing sizable damage we can no more account for than understand.
The question of expression’s costs, as far as “harm” is concerned, really becomes: at whose expense?
And the question of expense, afaic, is one of the most unique aspects of porn’s role in people’s lives. Because, typically, we measure the harm of a product or service on the end user–or porn user in this case. And while there *is* evidence of porn’s measurable effect on the brain (or, for those more skeptical, please visit any University Marketing Department where students study how to affect people’s buying habits with *images*), the real *harm* can be seen in the True end user: the person on whom the porn viewer uses to act out their porn viewing habits. This of course, comes full circle as the industry continues to force girls and women into pornography to satiate the porn users’ demand. This harm is absolutely *immeasurable*: violence, rape, death.
But see we don’t even have the first end user covered. How often must we hear from a porn producer “I just make the porn”? That’s certainly not the full story. We would not accept from from a pharmacist “I just fill the prescription.” No, there is well known and accounted for legal recourse one may take if their medicine negatively affects their body (especially if the effects are not mentioned as a possibility in taking the medication). Porn producers saying “I make scenes and images that affect the porn user’s sexuality” is more accurate. And yet porn comes with no warning label: “Warning–consuming these images will likely make you view your wife, girlfriend, significant other, daughter, sister, female colleagues, or any random female person in public as a sex object for you to use and abuse.”
The harm is already evident. We don’t have to go far to see how men view women’s bodies and their access to them. *What other* multi-billion dollar industry so intimately represents men’s relationship to women’s bodies as does the porn and sex industries?
At one point do we see this connection? At what point do we recognize that the acts in porn are the same as the acts women and girls are being forced/pressured/asked to do in the streets to survive, in marriages to prevent infidelity, in relationships to feel worthy?
A man coming to a woman-centered blog asking *us* to show him the harm “inflicted” (clever word to use here, as “inflicted” has implications of immediacy–as if porn’s harm is the equivalent to poking someone in the eye) reeks of more privilege than I can express.
Mr. Randazza, if you have any honest intentions to understand the expenses, the costs, the harms of pornography use on society I would urge you reconsider your not returning and hang around a while.
Filed under: Uncategorized
We studied Dubai a bit in business school–the hotels, the money, the sheer material gluttony. The profs didn’t do any sort of ethical critique. It was all to dangle carrots in front of the money hungry bottom-line thinkers known as business students (the kind that wore suits every day to class while schmoozing with the profs about stock quotes or investments or a host of other topics they knew nothing about).
So, while you anxiously await Sexual Stigma P. 2 I present you a study in excess with your host: the city of Dubai.
Do grab a barf bag.
Filed under: Antibodies, BloggingtheNO, gender pimps, Grab a shovel, Interconnected!, rape extinction
This world has got some serious hots for the tots.
I present you sexeee anecdote: when I was 2 I had chubalicious baby fat, the kind that fell in rolls down my legs and arms. My hair was short and whitish blonde. I had a drooly mouth cuz I chewed on everything. And because I wasn’t some prodigy-pooper I was bottom heavy in a diaper like all my tot friends.
Honestly, I don’t know what kept me from landing leading roles in child porn or being married off only a few years later. Hawt-Eeeee!
Being anti child porn is sorta like the ultimate DUH, isn’t it? Duh! Who the fuck says they are down with child porn? And yet, our country/world can’t keep its creepy hands off of them. So what’s the dealiyo?
Before you answer let us journey an an experiment.
Which of the following images are acceptable for an adult man to be sexually attracted to/aroused by?
Hopefully, for legal reasons you said none (they are all under 16!). And of course, the law doesn’t say “don’t be sexually attracted to such and such age” because who finds what sexually attractive is unknown until that person acts on it. But the message is pretty clear: kids can’t consent so their rapings and molestations are not game for your genital fondles.
Images 1 and 2 were obvious, hopefully. They are children so clear as day. But what about images 3 & 4? Seriously. What’s the difference between these images and countless twenty somethings? Or vice versa. What’s the difference between these images and countless images of women meant to be sexually attractive for adult men (legally)?
The only degree of separation is age. Yet age hardly means anything when men are being conditioned to *images*–the looks, the expressions, the posturing, the body proportions, the facial structures/features. Not to mention all these different elements (body proportions, facial features, expressions, etc) are not age specific–plenty of females from about 14-30 can pull this off (and sometimes those limits get much younger/older).
With the ongoing and successful attempt by media and advertising to infantilize over 18 females and hypersexualize the underage, who here is surprised to learn that pedophilia and predatory men are a frickin’ pandemic?
I know I’m a bit of a sell out for using the Miley Cyrus image for the poor girl is the now the face of the weird daddy-daughter complex and that must feel wretched. But that’s not even the part the makes my head spin the most. Nor is the part where I tell Annie Leibovitz straight up she has the artistic merit of a foam cup: cheap and bad for the environment. Or the part where I ask Mr. & Mrs. Cyrus wtf were they thinking!? (also fodder for the comments: what do my readers think of licensing parents?)
And don’t get me wrong: all that stuff is fuuuuucked (and I’m happy to repeat as much in comments for those who misread me). But you know what really gets me going? How the adults are reacting.
First of all, Disney Parents, Miley does not owe you and/or your Disney prince/princesses an apology–she’s 15, she is still a legal child.
Second of all, it’s not her fault. How, pray tell, is a person ( a child no less!) to be sexualized without someone being the one to sexualize her. Excuse my agenda for a second, but these pictures would not be sexy or sexual if women’s bodies were not appropriated. Period! They are sexual because of conditioning, not innateness, so that actually makes it the sexualizer’s fault–not Miley’s. Adults are uncomfortable for a reason they will not admit to: they see those images and they sexualize her and it makes them (rightly!) feel wrong.
But never mind all these 14 and 15 and 16 and 17 year old almost-legals feeling the predatory burden that is passing-for-legal-sexyay-woman. Some people don’t even want toddler knocks offs, like 10 year olds or something. They want the real deal. You remember images 1 & 2 up there? The obviously-too-young? Yeah, seems they don’t even need mussed hair and make up to get their sexy on. Roll Clip!
(Actually for this next portion you’ll need to follow this link because I cannot get the video to embed for some reason. Seriously watch it!) -Via oneangrygirl.net.
So as you see, there is also a huge and increasing demand for *really young* girls.
…I’m wondering how long it would take to normalize “toddler-plants”: plastic surgery for all us free-choicin’-women to get body reductions so we are 3 feet tall, our flesh all bubbled out, with puffy cheeks and baby teeth inserts (cuz the rest will be knocked out during this highly individualistic-empowerfullized operation). Maybe even some saliva injections to get that that drool factor going again (ooo la la)…
One would think, what with the steady supply of images wherein preteen and teen girls are flashing their grade school bums on myspace pages or humping boys/each other in music videos, that the predators urges would finally be kept at bay. But lo, we have more and more men getting caught with child porn or raping young girls, as well as younger and younger girls being forced into the sex/rape trade.
We need to keep in mind: pedophilia is not just a need/desire to molest children, it is the very strong obsession to commit a sexually stigmatized act– here the root being the stigma, the branch being children.
Stigma for all general purposes arises from a normalization of some kind-acceptable standards- wherein outliers to these standards are the stigma (bad, wrong, illegal). These standards tend to come from or are heavily influenced by our religious and government institutions as well as our media.
While religious and government entities set up a set of sexual circumstances we are to follow (and usually referencing some BS book known as The Bible) the media/advertising industries then take the outliers to these standards and sexualize them for profit. The point being to create a very powerful buying stimulus wherein our desires are strictly tied to feeling bad, naughty, taboo. Some people forget that these feelings -disgust, dirty, wrong-are all very powerful and arousing as well. Couple these stigma-stimuli with the naturally and physically enjoyable feeling of being aroused/orgasming and voila!: we have created a huge demand for sexual stigma. One very few admit to –because what would be the fun if it wasn’t as sneaky, or mischievous?
(And perhaps now we can explain why all these religious men go nuts for kids–they get the added stimulus of thinking they are going to hell for their sexual activities. A mind-blowing orgasm for sure)
The thing is media and advertising are not stagnant industries. They are continuously shifting to keep this stigma satiated by sensationalism and new sexually “naughty” ventures. What we once thought was too young for presenting-as-sexual to men is now normalized through overexposure and must move on to keep the public interested (re: buying). It is time for a new set of girls, younger, more wrong.
In this process we have ensured a whole new generation will not escape the fate of this destructive crossfire, that our daughters and sisters will feel this violence at much younger ages, ages so formative that these experiences will live on in them forever. What’s more, we are teaching men that they are monsters, uncontrollable, sexual deviates whose sexually stigmatized acts should be celebrated.
This sickness is contagious and growing and the system is in place. Our countries, our world–we have created a Pedo-Mill.