Small Post

There are no long essays this weekend, and it’s not because I’m on blog vacation, it’s because I don’t have any new pieces on the go. I’ve been saving lots of interesting articles on Facebook lately but when I go back to read about them, I just think “ugh, this is not worth my time.”

For example, here is a “non-binary” woman who knew she was non-binary because she wanted to play a male character in a play. From what little I know about her watching this video, she appears to be a conventionally feminine straight woman who just has short hair. What silliness! Even feminine women can rock the short haircuts, and anyone can want to play any character in a play and it doesn’t mean a thing. Last time I was in a play I was a male character. This woman also admits that “female is a sex” so presumably she knows she is female. Why female pronouns wouldn’t be appropriate for her is a mystery to me. Of course she has a unique relationship to masculinity and femininity—all of us do. If that’s all it takes to be non-binary, then everyone is non-binary, which renders the concept pretty meaningless.

Another article I saved this week is a BDSM article from Autostraddle in which a submissive woman who doesn’t use female pronouns for herself writes about how she loves being used for sex, in a way that precisely mirrors the way that men abuse women and girls. She says:

“…sometimes, sex is not for me. Sometimes, sex is me being used — warm, open, and at the whim of someone else’s pleasure. I like being used. Within the confines of a well-negotiated BDSM scene, I like when my opinions are ignored, when it doesn’t matter what I want, when my body is present for whatever my dominant decides to use it for.”

This whole article is about her sexualizing the way that men objectify and dehumanize women and it should actually be given a trigger warning. What she describes is exactly the way porn presents women—as nothing but warm holes for men to use, with no feelings or desires of our own, who only exist as a sex toy for an abusive man. Sometimes women learn to sexualize this because it’s the type of sexuality we see from the media we consume—especially porn itself, but also other pornified media such as music videos and magazines. Women learn that what makes her worthy and desirable is when men want to abuse us, and then we learn to crave that abuse as a form of validation. What we should do is work to identify this and unlearn it, not promote it to other people as a fun thing to try in bed. Abuse should not be viewed as sexy. One of the steps we all need to take toward ending abuse is identifying when abuse is being sexualized and speak out against it. Autostraddle is purportedly a magazine for ‘queer women,’ but these days ‘queer’ has nothing to do with being lesbian or bisexual and everything to do with the abusive, commodified sexuality that sex-pozzitive types promote. There is no reason to think that the average lesbian or bisexual woman wants to bring porn-style abuse into her sex life.

In queer theory, any kind of sexuality that goes against the status quo is considered “queer,” except queer theorists ignore the existence of sex-based oppression and instead of identifying patriarchy as the status quo they regard imaginary “anti-sex prudes” as the status quo. This means their idea of “queer” sexuality is any sexuality that goes against the wishes of the “anti-sex prudes,”  which is why, when you deliberately recreate the type of sexuality you’ve been taught by the dominant culture, it is considered “subversive” by queer/sex-pozz types.

On a similar note, here’s a unicorn horn dildo.

A dildo should be shaped in a way that it fits comfortably in a vagina, but this is pointy. Presumably, since it’s being sold as a dildo, I’m guessing it’s intended to go in a vagina. So what is this for, exactly? It’s not intended for her pleasure, or it would be shaped smoothly and with a rounded end. It looks to me like it’s for people with a unicorn fetish and who like the idea of putting a sharp object inside a woman. I’d run away really fast from anyone who wanted to use this on me. Thanks to the sex-pozzitive movement, sexual activity is a weird, commodified performance designed to titillate an abuser or a third party who is watching, and it’s not safe for women.

Here’s my feminist and anti-capitalist sex advice: sex is free. It doesn’t cost any money for “services” nor for “products.” It’s not something you “spice up” by buying weird shit or doing weird shit, it’s something you do with your body and a partner who is as excited about you as you are about her/him. If sex is somehow boring for you when you are not doing weird shit, then don’t have sex.

Damn, I’m on a role with the kink-shaming today!

So the next project I’m working on is reading a novel sent to me by a reader. This one is a lesbian novel and it’s not yet published. Hopefully she will publish it this spring because so far it’s really good! In the near future I also hope to read some more books by Leslie Feinberg and some introductory books on Marxism. I’m going to look for anything approximating a “Marxism for Dummies” book because I am starting pretty much at the beginning. I understand some leftist concepts just from interacting with people online but I need a solid foundation. I’m getting so sick of people saying that transgenderism is “the far left” because I know this is not true but I cannot prove why, beyond saying that choosing an identity for yourself is not at all compatible with nor related to eliminating class-based oppression or seizing the means of production. I had a look at Marx’s book on Capital in a bookstore recently, and it was huge, written in tiny print, and way beyond my mental capacity. I’m gonna need something for beginners before I can ever tackle that, if I ever tackle that.

I’m guessing it’ll be a few weeks before you get another long essay from me, because I have lots of reading to do before I actually have another long essay to write. I’m not exactly on “blog vacation,” just need some time. Maybe I’ll post something short occasionally though.

Men hate us

In my last anti-porn article someone made a comment that I “openly hate men.” I was thinking of writing a response to that but I found I didn’t feel like explaining it. Women have been accused of hating men so many times, and it’s been explained so many times that expecting men to stop abusing us doesn’t amount to us “hating” them.

Then I saw this picture yesterday and it’s the perfect illustration of how men openly hate women.

This banner was hung by misogynist frat boys near the University of Cincinnati:

gag

This banner was created to warn (threaten?) women that if they come near they can expect to be given rough blow jobs (which means having a penis shoved down their throats until they gag.) The fact that the text is addressed to a parent of the woman instead of the woman herself makes it even more creepy. The words “your daughter” makes it sound like their target victim is a young woman, presumably a college freshman. The fact that they are addressing this to a parent of a college freshman makes it sound as though the message is addressed to parents (most likely fathers) who are dropping off their freshman daughters at college for the first time. They don’t seem to be the least bit ashamed of communicating to fathers what they will be doing to abuse their daughters. It seems as though they are expecting other men to find this funny.

This banner displays several things:

  • Men are quite proud of their misogyny and their desire to hurt women
  • Men think the abuse women endure in porn is a legitimate thing to do to women
  • Men assume that there will be no negative consequences when they abuse women (and they’re right—just a few days ago Global News reported that only 3% of sexual assault reports in Vancouver result in convictions—and the numbers are similar everywhere else. Men are effectively allowed to abuse women because there are rarely ever negative consequences for them when they do.)
  • Men don’t give a flying fuck about the way they make women feel with their disgusting behavior.

In Germany, where prostitution is legal, billboards like this show up around town:

german ad

(This image is taken from an excellent article by Manuela Schon which is an absolute must-read by the way.)

Can you imagine being a German woman and whenever you leave the house you see billboards advertising pussy for sale? How can you ever develop a sense of self or a healthy relationship with a man when your genitals are literally consumer products that men own and can buy and sell as they please?

It doesn’t matter where you are in the world—men consider women to be commodities that they own and can use however they want. In the so-called “developed” world we create ridiculous amounts of pornography, which is simply prostitution with a camera, and there are large problems with human trafficking (often of teenagers), child abuse, child porn, and intimate partner violence. In other countries, women are literal sex slaves and child brides and are open targets for rape. Men are never ashamed of the way they behave. They call it either “culture” or “religion” or “free speech” or “the woman’s choice” or any number of bullshit excuses without ever feeling an ounce of shame that they’re behaving like monsters from hell.

A father in Australia was put in jail for raping his own daughter from age 11 to 13 and selling her to other men to rape using ads on Craigslist. When he went to jail he said “it was fun while it lasted.”

The youngest convicted rapist is 11 years old. A boy in the U.K raped his sister, aged 9, two times. No doubt he learned this violent behavior from porn, which men around the world defend as “free speech.” The freedom for men to abuse women and to groom young boys into becoming abusers is protected above the freedom of women and girls to be safe from abuse. You can definitely make a case that exposure to pornography is child abuse against boys too. However, since it’s girls on the receiving end of that abuse I’m going to put my energy and compassion toward them.

When someone accuses me of “hating men,” my first reaction is “of course I do.” How can anyone not hate men? Their behavior is so terrible I’d be quite happy to never see another one of them again as long as I live. But you know what you will never see me do? You’ll never see me actually treating men as badly as they treat women. I have no desire to harm anyone—I just want to live in peace without being abused. When I’m accused of hating men, and this goes for all feminists, what we’re usually actually doing is pointing out their terrible behavior and expressing our rage. And when we fantasize about a world without men, most of the time we’re not fantasizing about literally killing them, we just want to get away from them and have some peace.

There are a tiny amount of feminists who advocate for reducing the male population by killing male babies. You’ll notice, however, that they haven’t actually carried out this plan, it’s been limited to just commentary on the Internet, and most feminists don’t agree with this idea. Male babies aren’t generally at risk of anything in the real world except for the grooming and abuse they’ll experience from adult men, and from things like racism, poverty, and violence which are largely perpetrated by men.

I mostly don’t want any men around me because I get so tired of dealing with sexism, mansplaining and macho behavior. But like everyone else in the world, I realize it’s #notallmen, and I do have a couple of male friends in real life who are really fun to drink beer and play cards with. There are about four or five men who read my blog who are pro-feminist and I don’t mind them commenting. Because it’s not about actually hating people on the basis of being male, it’s about hating macho male behavior, and so it follows that if you’re acting like a decent human being then I don’t have a problem with you.

It’s men who openly hate women. They proudly proclaim that hate all the time and act on it whenever they want to, because they like it and they can.

The new “public health crisis” strategy for opposing porn

The “public health crisis” (PHC) strategy is a new strategy the anti-porn movement is using to try and get more people on board. This strategy involves framing pornography as a public health issue since it causes addiction and low self-esteem, ruins relationships, and increases the incidence of sexual assault. This is a strategy that can appeal to a wide variety of people with varied politics, and, most importantly, it appeals more to men than did previous anti-porn strategies. Men have always adamantly opposed anti-pornography initiatives on the basis that banning images of women being raped violates men’s right to free speech and self-expression. The PHC strategy is much less threatening to men than the unabridged radical feminist position, because it presents pornography as simply an addiction that one shouldn’t fall into due to potential negative personal health and relationship issues, rather than presenting it as male violence against women and a cornerstone of women’s oppression. It also presents men as victims of the porn industry, which works as a strategy because men only care about victims of an exploitative industry if those victims are male. Although the PHC approach will surely get more people on board with criticizing porn, which has its merits, it’s a watered down strategy. It helps a few more people to realize that porn is harmful but without challenging men’s institutional power to objectify women, which means that the industry won’t take much of a hit.

One of the men who is publicly opposing porn from a personal health and addiction perspective (but not a feminist perspective) is Alexander Rhodes. He is a former porn addict who founded the No Fap support group, which is an online resource with its own website and a Reddit forum, and it provides judgment-free support for men trying to get over their addiction. I have written about the No Fap subreddit before here, because they link occasionally to anti-porn posts on my blog and so I see the link in my stats. The issue I had when I wrote that post, and still have now, is that No Fap doesn’t take any moral position against porn. It merely provides support to men who are struggling with addiction and erectile dysfunction while completely ignoring the fact that porn primarily harms women. (For more information on that, please read Pornography: Men Possessing Women by Andrea Dworkin.) Every once in a while I get a few more blog hits from the No Fap subreddit, and I always check to see what was posted. Invariably some guy has read one of my anti-porn posts and is surprised to find out that porn is actually a lot more harmful than he realized, and he posts the link to help inspire his No Fap buddies to keep staying away from porn. The other users react the same way every time. They dismiss me as an anti-sex prude who hates sex workers and insist that there is no moral problem with pornography, it’s just not something they should keep doing several times a day.

Alexander Rhodes spoke to a reporter for the New York Times for an article called Internet Porn Nearly Ruined His Life. Now He Wants to Help. (FYI by “help,” he means “help men.”) Even though pornography is a global epidemic of violence perpetrated by men against primarily women and girls, this guy is all about how it affected him and men like him.

According to the article, Mr. Rhodes first encountered pornography by accident at age 11, when he clicked on an ad that led to an image that he says depicted rape. That rape must have been very titillating for him, because he became addicted to porn and was masturbating to it up to 14 times a day. The reason he stopped wasn’t because he finally developed a conscience and realized that it’s wrong to masturbate to images of rape, but because he was unable to have relationships with women. He had erectile dysfunction and could only maintain an erection by thinking about porn. As usual, men only care about their own dicks. Porn wasn’t a problem for him until his boner was negatively affected. Although he still does not give any fucks about the epidemic of violence against women and girls, he believes that he is “uniquely qualified to help humanity” due to the business he is starting to help men recover from excessive masturbation.

To be fair, he does briefly mention women in his article.

“I knew it was bad for me,” he said. “But I also realized it was bad for women I was involved with, and that was the moment that I said: ‘I need to leave this thing behind. It is completely distorting my sexuality to the point where it could actually be harmful or at least not enjoyable for other people who I am involved with.'”

It’s like he is dimly aware that when you masturbate to rape multiple times a day for many years, you start to act like a rapist in bed. (Or turn into an actual rapist.) What else would he mean by “it’s distorting my sexuality to the point where it could be harmful to people I’m involved with”? I wonder what his first two girlfriends would say if they were interviewed.

Even though Rhodes has not taken any moral position against porn, his efforts to protect the health of his erection by not watching it have angered lots of porn enthusiasts.

“People have tried — and failed — to hack the site’s servers, and its forums have been bombarded with pornographic images, he said. His father received pornography in the mail, Mr. Rhodes said, and he himself has gotten death threats.”

Despite decades of anti-porn activism by feminists, men still completely lose their shit when anyone threatens their right to access images and videos of men raping women. As of now, nothing women have said or done has ever gotten men to care about the harm they inflict on us.

Ten years ago now, I too was a porn user who quit. My anti-porn resource was not No Fap, but radical feminist blogs. Feminists actually point out that women are groomed and coerced into the porn industry, that they are not fully aware of what they’re getting into when they enter the industry, and that they are not in control over what happens while they’re on the set. We also point out how men are posting “revenge porn” all the time, so it’s impossible to tell if amateur porn was uploaded by willing exhibitionists or by ex-boyfriends whose girlfriends did not consent to the uploading. The bottom line being that when you look at porn you are very likely looking at either a rape, or a sex act that may have been consensual at the time but that the woman did not intend for strangers on the Internet to see. You have no way of knowing if what you are watching is consensual, and we know that in many cases it’s not. This explanation and reasoning should be enough to make anyone quit porn, but unfortunately many people, particularly men, simply don’t care.

This guy Rhodes acknowledged in his New York Times article that the first porn he saw was a rape. How was that not a deal-breaker, and how does that not motivate him to take a moral stand against porn now? To acknowledge that porn depicts rape and then claim not to have a moral issue with it is to put your misogyny in full display.

So now we have an anti-porn movement that’s based on an “addiction” and “public health” approach, because it doesn’t risk alienating guys like this who are giving up porn, however selfish their reasons may be. As per usual, if we were to go full radical feminist and state publicly that pornography is male violence against women and that pornographers are violating women’s human rights, we would get the full onslaught of male violence and backlash against us—death threats, rape threats, temper tantrums with lots of shouting about “feminazis” and “censorship” and “anti-sex prudes,” and ultimately, a failed movement because men would shut it down.

Gail Dines is one of the world’s leading anti-porn campaigners. Although she has a solid radical feminist and anti-capitalist analysis of porn, which she brilliantly explains in her book and her lectures, she uses the “public health crisis” strategy when doing large-scale public advocacy. There’s a good reason for this—she wouldn’t have a movement otherwise. A recent article written by her and Robert Jensen praises the Republican Party for naming porn as a public health crisis in their platform. They appeal to Liberals to take the same stance, focusing on the fact that porn ruins relationships and sex and it causes sexual aggression.

Their article concludes:

“Defining porn as a public health crisis is long overdue, and the next step is for politicians of all parties to find the courage to take on the billion-dollar industries—not only the pornography producers but the cable companies, hotels, and web sites involved in distribution. To advance a truly progressive policy, we need a movement of parents, educators, youth, child advocates, health professionals, and activists that reclaims the next generation’s rights to a sexuality that is free of violence and degradation. Anything short of this represents an abdication by adults of our obligations to our kids.”

Technically, I agree with the statements in the article. For example, we do need comprehensive sex education that talks about healthy sexuality and enthusiastic consent, and we do need to challenge the businesses that profit from porn. The thing is though, we need more than that. It’s not enough just to teach people that porn presents an unhealthy version of sexuality. We need to completely eliminate men’s ability to abuse women. That certainly means that they should not be allowed to film sexual abuse and then sell it as public entertainment. No matter how much education people get, if men still have the power to use the bodies of women and girls as they see fit, then porn will still exist. Men should understand that it’s wrong to lure young, impressionable women and teens into an exploitative industry with false promises of easy money and glamour and fame. They should understand that it’s wrong to abuse women, and that abuse is still abuse even if the victim is financially compensated for the harm. They should understand that the proper response to seeing graphic evidence of sexual abuse is to report it to police and to push for convictions for abusers, not to masturbate to it. It should be completely unthinkable to either produce, sell or consume pornography, on the basis that women and girls are fully human persons and violence against us is unacceptable.

Demisexuality and You

According to the Demisexuality Resource Center, demisexuality is:

“a sexual orientation in which someone feels sexual attraction only to people with whom they have an emotional bond. Most demisexuals feel sexual attraction rarely compared to the general population, and some have little to no interest in sexual activity.”

So, like most people, demisexuals need to get to know a person before feeling sexual attraction to them, rather than just dropping their pants the second they’ve been introduced.

“Emotional intimacy is a main component, usually, so some demisexuals find themselves attracted to close friends or romantic partners. Other components may include familiarity with the person and knowledge about them (ex: learning about aspects of their personality).”

How unusual! Feeling attracted to one’s romantic partner, and needing to know aspects of someone’s personality before feeling attracted!

“Most people on the non-asexual side of the spectrum feel sexual attraction regardless of whether or not they have a close emotional bond with someone. They may have sexual feelings for attractive people on the street, classmates or coworkers they’ve barely spoken to, or celebrities. However, they may choose to wait to have sex for a variety of reasons: it might not be feasible or appropriate, they want to make sure the person is respectful and kind, it’s against their religious beliefs, they only want to have sex in a romantic relationship, etc.”

Okay, this website is definitely describing everybody. Of course you don’t have sex with every single person you like the looks of! People only have sex when it’s “feasible and appropriate,” as noted above by the Demisexuals.

The reason why perfectly normal people are having to label their perfectly normal feelings as “demisexual” is because the way they are expected to behave otherwise is fucked up, and they need an excuse to opt out of it. The way they are expected to behave is like they are in a porn movie. Due to both porn itself and a porn-soaked culture that turns every last bit of popular culture into a promotional ad for porn, people are going around thinking that they need to dress like a porn star, take off their clothes at random, have sex as an ice-breaker activity, and say yes to any sexual act all the time no matter what. Take for example, this situation witnessed at the University of California-Berkeley campus:

“Groups of girls were clacking along the street in their party uniforms: short skirts, bare midriffs, five-inch heels. One of them stopped and lifted her skirt above her waist, revealing a tiny thong, a flat belly, and some righteously toned glutes. She looked happy and strong, laughing, surrounded by friends, having fun. Then she turned toward a building where two bros, appraising the relative “hotness” of those trying to gain entrée to their party, were posted by the door.”

As Gail Dines always says, you can either be fuckable or invisible. If you’re a woman who doesn’t want to lift up your mini-skirt and show off your thong in order for frat boys to rate your “hotness,” then you’re a boring, old-fashioned, anti-sex prude. Hence women having to label themselves “demisexual” in order to convey to people that they actually want to have a conversation with a guy and determine that he has at least two brain cells and isn’t an asshole before her skirt comes off.

The culture young people are growing up in is a porn culture. Not only are youth watching actual porn starting at age 11, they are also witnessing a consumerist, individualist pro-capitalist culture that sells women and girls as consumer products at every turn. Even before the Internet, young people tended to believe that everyone was having sex but them; now the problem is certainly worse. After spending hours online watching videos in which every woman says “yes” and sex occurs anytime, anywhere, between anybody, at the drop of a hat, anyone who attempts to assert boundaries and pursue a healthy and rewarding sexual and romantic life will feel like a deviant.

Let’s take at look at 17 Confessions From People Who Identify as Demisexual, posted on hellogiggles.com.

  1. It is so hard to explain to people that I don’t feel arousal unless there is a very close bond (I’m demisexual) but am still a very sexual person.
  2. I’m demisexual, but I’m scared people will judge me because I don’t want to have sex with them straight away or have a one night stand.
  3. I’m demisexual and it’s a little frustrating. When I’m with my friends they’ll say “omg he’s so hot” meanwhile I’m thinking “I wonder if he has a good personality.”
  4. I hate being demisexual. Crushes are either extremely rare or they last for way too long. I wish I was normal.
  5. I question every part of who I am. When men find out I’m demisexual, they usually stop talking to me.
  6. I am demisexual and I feel like no one understands that I can’t just give you a try and love you, I really can’t.
  7. As a demisexual, if you ask for sex on the first date, you have no chance with me.
  8. I’m demisexual and an introvert, so casual dating isn’t an option for me…I wish I could be like everyone else.
  9. Dating woes: Being demisexual. Maybe one day I’ll find a guy who understands and respects what I cannot change.
  10. I’m demisexual. All the people I’ve slept with I wasn’t attracted to, they just got me aroused and I’m too shy to say no so I went with it.
  11. Just because I’m demisexual doesn’t mean I don’t want a serious, loving relationship.
  12. I’m demisexual. When I admitted that to someone I thought was my friend, they laughed in my face. I just want to be accepted for being me.
  13. I’m demisexual. Always have been, but when I was younger I felt bad for the guys so I would pretend I wasn’t.
  14. Being a demisexual female in a world where all guys seem to want is sex is really discouraging.
  15. The problem with being demisexual is that I can’t relate when people talk about stuff like dates with random people. I feel like I’m the odd one out and sometimes it feels like I’m the only one.
  16. I’m Demisexual and I love sex with my boyfriend but I don’t NEED it. He just doesn’t seem to understand.
  17. I’m finally being honest about myself. I’m demisexual. I’m done pretending to have sexual desire before I’m ready. If guys can’t handle that, they don’t deserve me.

This article doesn’t name the sex of the writers, but judging by what they’re writing I’d say they’re all female. I say that because they’re writing about the standard experience of being female in a porn-soaked patriarchy. These women think that everyone around them finds fulfillment in jumping into bed with random people they don’t even know. Nope. Even the people doing that aren’t finding fulfillment from it, or at least, the women aren’t. I did the whole casual sex thing when I was younger, and at the time I would have told you that it was fun, but I’m older and more mature now. I know that good sex isn’t based on the “hotness” of the participants, or how “extreme” the performance is. (Speaking of “hotness,” I’m going to quote this article again where the author quotes Ariel Levy:

“As journalist Ariel Levy pointed out in her book, Female Chauvinist Pigs, “hot” is not the same as “beautiful” or “attractive”: It is a narrow, commercialized vision of sexiness that, when applied to women, can be reduced to two words: “fuckable” and “sellable.”

Like I was saying, good sex is not based on being “hot,” it’s based on connection and chemistry. It’s good when you really want each other, because you know each other and you have developed feelings for each other, and when you’re feeling sexual tension because of your mutual attraction, and when you are excited to know that your partner wants you as much as you want them. This sort of connection cannot happen instantly—that’s impossible. (It can’t be bought or sold, either.) Chemistry and attraction are things people develop gradually through interaction with each other.

What these “demisexual” women don’t realize is that, despite feeling like they’re abnormal, they have actually figured out the secret to good sex ahead of their peers. They are on the path to have satisfying sex, while their porn-addicted peers are going to have to unlearn a whole bunch of harmful beliefs and habits before they can actually enjoy themselves in bed. Getting validation that you are “fuckable” only feels good in a superficial, fleeting way. After putting up with a bunch of disrespectful and ineffective lovers, even the “fuckable” women will get tired of the whole charade and want to find the same sort of relationship the demisexuals are looking for.

Demisexuals aren’t missing out on anything if misogynist sleazebags stop talking to them upon finding out they are demisexual. They should actually breathe a sigh of relief because they have dodged a bullet.

It’s interesting to note that “demi” means half. Does demisexual mean half sexual? It’s like these people believe that they’re missing something or they aren’t sexual enough. This belief is not just limited to the Tumblr Speshul Snowflake community, it’s everywhere else too. There is a thing called “Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder,” which is a medical euphemism for “bitches not putting out enough,” and apparently around one third of women have this “condition.” But if that many people have “low desire,” can that even be called “low”? Perhaps the bar is being set too high. Low desire in comparison to what, exactly?

What women need to learn is that whatever their sexual interest level is, that is the normal level. There is no such thing as being “half sexual” or “hyposexual” because there is no universal measuring stick that everyone has to meet. Women are not responsible for providing their bodies to men to use. Men have their hands and they have tube socks—they are going to be just fine. Women are allowed to decide when and how and with whom to have sex, and we’re also allowed to not want it at all, and this doesn’t require an excuse, a label, or an explanation.

Teen boy rapes and murders his girlfriend; records it on cell phone

Obviously, this story is very disturbing.

From ABC news:

“Shocking details surfaced in the death of 15-year-old Karen Perez. The South Houston High School freshman’s body was discovered late Monday night, days after she vanished. Search crews found her body partially nude and stuffed in a cabinet under a sink inside an abandoned apartment at 1600 Avenue N in the city of South Houston.
Her accused killer faced a judge in juvenile court Wednesday morning. Prosecutors revealed the 15-year-old suspect, whose identity has not been made public, was her boyfriend.”

“Police found text messages on the boyfriend’s phones, according to prosecutors. The messages showed the boyfriend texted Karen, demanded she skip school on Friday, and meet him by the tennis courts. Surveillance video from a nearby restaurant shows Karen with the defendant and another person, leaving there shortly after noon. She never returned home again. If she didn’t, the message said he would kill her and her life will “end on bloods.”Prosecutors said cell phone video from the boyfriend’s phone captured Karen’s final moments alive. The video was black but the audio was clear. In it, they said the boyfriend could be heard forcing Karen to have sex with him. He called her by name. As Karen told him she didn’t want sex, prosecutors said the boyfriend began choking her. Investigators said in the audio you can hear Karen cry out, “I don’t want to die.”

Unfortunately, men raping women (and even teen boys raping teen girls) and recording the crime, usually on video, is not rare. I’m sure you’ve all heard of the case of Rehtaeh Parsons, who committed suicide after her classmates filmed themselves raping her. Men do this because they love rape; they are proud of raping women, and they want to be able to watch it again and show it to other men. It’s very rare that rapists are ever prosecuted, even when the evidence is clear. An entire cultural narrative that permeates every aspect of society tells us that women are liars, that we enjoy being abused, that we cause our own abuse by doing or wearing the wrong things, and that if we don’t behave in exactly the right way after a rape, then it wasn’t really rape. Recently in Canada, serial abuser Jian Ghomeshi was declared not guilty of overcoming resistance by choking. This is because the women he abused continued to contact him after the abuse, and even still had some feelings for him. Because the women he abused did not behave the way the courts deemed appropriate after the abuse, Ghomeshi’s strangulation without consent was declared legal and not abusive. (I can’t believe we even have to specify that the strangulation was without consent, but we do.)

Strangulation is, in fact, popular with abusive men. Kinksters think it’s an edgy and intense way to have sex. They call it “breath play.” The euphemism “breath play” obscures the fact that strangulation is the act of killing someone. It shouldn’t even be necessary to spell this out, but if you think it’s sexy to imitate killing someone during sex, you are an abusive asshole and a horrible person. I don’t care who I kink-shame by saying that.

There are no other criminals who regularly film their crimes other than male rapists who target women. You don’t see people proudly filming themselves stealing money or robbing banks or breaking into buildings. These are crimes that the criminal wants to cover up in order to not get caught. But rapists who rape women are proud of their crimes, and they can be reasonably sure that they won’t be prosecuted. They are often regarded as heros by other men, and protected by their male peers. They can openly talk and joke about raping women without fear of being ostracized or called out on abusive behaviour.

It’s no surprise that men are proud of raping women and that they film their crimes. A multi-billion dollar industry selling videos of men raping women is currently one of the biggest money-makers in global capitalism. Women and girls are for sale in nearly every country. It is legal to film a rape and sell it; it is called “free speech” and “business” by the men who profit from it. Children as young as 11 are now watching it on their cell phones. Women who challenge this industry that profits from the abuse and dehumanization of women are called “anti-sex,” and “prudes.” We are supposed to fully embrace the sale of our sisters and daughters in the name of sexual freedom. It is of course only freedom for men. Freedom for women would be the freedom to NOT be for sale—the freedom to be in charge of our own lives and not be subject to this kind of abuse.

It is horrible and tragic that this 15 year old boy recorded himself raping and strangling his girlfriend to death, but it’s not surprising. The next generation of boys are all being taught through ubiquitous and high-quality media that women are there for them to use, and that the more violently they use us, the sexier it is.

Pornography and BDSM are incompatible with women’s humanity, but rest assured they will remain enormously popular as long as we live in capitalist patriarchy.

The unfortunate sexualization of schoolgirls

Another one of those articles came up where schoolgirls are being asked to wear longer skirts to school to avoid getting assaulted by male students and teachers. These articles are a dime a dozen, of course—this happens all the bloody time, all over the world. This one took place in New Zealand and the following bullshit went down:

“Teenage girls at a New Zealand high school have reportedly been told to lower their skirts to knee level so as not to “distract” male students and teachers.

Around 40 students in year 11 at Henderson high school in Auckland were called to a meeting and told by deputy principal Cherith Telford that their skirts would need to be lowered to knee level, Newshub reports.

Telford said the move was designed to “keep our girls safe, stop boys from getting ideas and create a good work environment for male staff.”

Luckily, they interviewed a feminist who explained that this is victim-blaming. Since I am a radical feminist, I’m going to do more than name this as victim-blaming, I’m going to do a full analysis. (Sorry arainandagale, I know you’ve had enough depressing stuff, but the thing is, every day the patriarchy gives me a new thing to rant about.)

Let’s look at the context in which these girls have been told to lower their skirt length, shall we? We live in a culture in which schoolgirls are constantly sexualized. The most popular genre in the multi-billion dollar porn industry is teen, in which teen girls who are often 18 but made to look younger than 18 are sexually abused by older men, often in ways that explicitly present an incestuous relationship or a teacher-student situation. That’s because men really love abusing their power to sexually assault vulnerable girls. The schoolgirl uniform itself is sexualized—women in porn often wear it to accentuate their youth and the “schoolgirl” uniform is an outfit you can buy in shops that sell sex toys. The uniform of the schoolgirl is literally fetish gear for adults.

The principal of this school is quoted as saying she didn’t want male students “getting ideas.” I think they definitely will get ideas—they will get them from the porn culture we live in, there’s no way around that. They will get the idea that women and girls owe them sex, that we are objects for their use, that our purpose is to give them boners, and that if we aren’t happy about this arrangement we aren’t real women. Unfortunately, changing the length of the girls’ skirts won’t convince boys that their female classmates are full human beings when everything in their world is telling them otherwise.

The principal also mentions wanting to create a “good work environment for male staff.” I wonder, if the students’ skirts were one inch shorter, why would that create a bad work environment? Will male teachers suddenly be unable to teach a math lesson or grade papers because of the girls’ skirts? (sarcasm)

Everybody knows what kind of culture we live in. Only radical feminists will admit this out loud, but we know that adult men routinely sexualize girls and will assault them when they get the chance. Adults who care about girls will often take ineffectual measures to supposedly keep girls “safe” without actually doing anything to prevent men from assaulting them. This is one such case.

This principal correctly identifies that both adult men and teen boys are threats to girls’ safety, and she knows why this is. So, does she fight against the porn culture that is teaching boys and men that girls are things for them to use? No. Does she push for better rates of rape convictions for perpetrators? No. Does she educate about consent? No. Does she target the men whose behaviours are a problem? No. Does she fight to liberate the female sex class from male control? No. Instead, she tells the girls to wear longer skirts. This strategy makes her feel like she is doing something, even though the power and privilege that men enjoy that allows them to assault women and girls remains completely intact. It doesn’t matter a bit how long or short their skirts are. Men will assault women and girls no matter what we are wearing. Quite often we are wearing jeans and a T shirt. Sexual assault has nothing to do with clothing, it has to do with men’s power over women and their enjoyment of domination. Men assault women because they can and they like to.

When we teach girls that they are little seductive temptresses for men, they can react in a couple of ways. They can learn to sexualize their own subordination and their vulnerability, and become the best sex objects they can be, taking pleasure in getting superficial approval from men who don’t actually respect them, or they can take the opposite approach, becoming unfeminine, hiding under baggy clothes, avoiding men, or not identifying as women. Some girls decide, if that’s what women are, then I must not be one. Teaching them to cover up or get assaulted doesn’t keep them safe, and it only makes things worse, because it teaches them that they are sex objects and that they have to accept this fate and take full responsibility for how men decide to use them.

The only thing that would actually keep these girls safe is to overthrow the patriarchy. End the sexualization of girls, end the porn industry, put rapists in jail, and give women and girls control over their own bodies. These should be the goals of anyone who is trying to protect girls.

In which I read Female Chauvinist Pigs and then turn into an old curmudgeon

I just read Chapter 4 of Female Chauvinist Pigs by Ariel Levy, available here, and I have now turned into an old geezer who shouts, “Hey you kids, get off my lawn!”

I’m kind of hoping that this is exaggerated and that things aren’t really this bad. Maybe she just took the worst examples to make her point about raunch culture? But this is pretty bad. And I’m betting some of this is true.

Levy describes the “boi” lesbian scene in New York and San Francisco in the 2000s and it’s full of misogyny and immaturity.

“Boihood has nothing to do with goddesses or sister­hood or herbal tea, and everything to do with being young, hip, sex positive, a little masculine, and ready to rock. Even in an entirely female universe, there are plenty of women who want to be like a man.

But bois want to be like a very young man. It’s no coincidence that the word is “boi” and not some version of “man.” Men have to deal with responsibili­ties, wives, careers, car insurance. Bois just get to have fun and, if they’re lucky, sex. “I never really wanted to grow up, which is what a lot of the boi identity is about,” said Lissa Doty, who is thirty-seven but looked more like twenty-four when we met for a beer in San Francisco at the Lexington Club, which everyone calls the Lex. She wore a baggy T-shirt and jeans and had gelled her bleached hair into a stiff fin, like the raised spine of a Komodo dragon. “I want to go out and have a good time! I want to be able to go out to the bar at night and go to parties and go to the amusement park and play. That sense of play-that’s a big difference from being a butch. To me, butch is like adult. If you’re a butch, you’re a grown-up: You’re the man of the house.”

There are definitely lesbians who “feel like” teenage boys. I’ve run into a few of them on the Internet. I’ve met a few “frat boy” type lesbians before, who walk with a swagger and see women as conquests. The ones I’ve met in real life are charming, not misogynist like the ones that Levy describes here.

“At a lesbian bar called Meow Mix, a girl in a newsboy cap and a white T-shirt with rolled-up sleeves said to her friend, “Some femme … just some fucking femme. I met her at a party three weeks ago and I fucked her and that was cool. But now she’s like, e-mailing me and I’m just like, chill out, bitch!” Her chest was smooth and flat: She’d either had top surgery-a double mas­tectomy-or, more likely, she bound her breasts down to achieve the look. She thrust her forearm in front of her face as if she were rapping as she spoke: “Some of these chicks, it’s like you top them once and then they’re all up in your face. It’s like, did I get you off? Yes. Am I your new best friend? No. You know what I’m saying, bro?”

.  .  .

“There is another camp of bois who date femmes exclusively and follow a locker­room code of ethics referenced by the phrase “bros before hos” or “bros before bitches,” which means they put the similarly masculine-identified women they hang out with in a different, higher category than the feminine women they have sex with. This school of bois tends to adhere to almost comically unreconstructed fifties gender roles. They just reposi­tion themselves as the ones who wear the pants-they take Female Chauvinist Piggery to a whole different level.”

.  .  .

“During an interview, Sarah, a twenty-eight-year­ old market analyst, showed me an e-mail she’d re­ceived from an Internet acquaintance named Kelli regarding a femme they both knew from the scene. It read: “I hope she’s not a big deal, that you’re just rid­ing her or whatever. Do you want me to keep an eye on her? Bros up bitches down.” Kelli’s peroration was a play on a catchphrase borrowed from sex traffick­ers: pimps up, hos down.”

What the fuck is this bullshit? Why are lesbians acting like the worst kind of straight men? Masculine lesbians in the 1950s opened doors and lit cigarettes for women, but these masculine lesbians want to be actual pimps. They are taking their cues about masculinity from rap videos and porn. They are more male-identified than I’ve ever seen women before, and it’s no surprise that they aren’t identifying as women. They’re either bois, genderqueers, FtMs, or anything else, as long as it’s not female. Females are just the pretty things they like to fuck, and are quite beneath them. Two bois in a relationship are called “faggots.” What is it with gay men calling themselves lesbians and lesbians calling themselves gay men?? Words have no meaning anymore.

Levy interviews a woman named Kim who is dating a boi named Clara. Kim says, “Clara’s biggest fear when we started dating was that I was going to try and fuck her.” So now we’ve gone back to the 1950s where butches had to make sure they were not “flipped“? I can’t imagine how it could make sense to be “afraid” your girlfriend is going to “try and fuck you.” First of all, if you are in a sexual relationship, wouldn’t you want your partner to pleasure you? Secondly, if you are afraid that your partner will do something to you that you don’t want, that is definitely an abusive relationship. But I don’t think Kim is actually abusive, I think Clara just has this male persona and fears being emasculated.

“Clara’s got this intense thing, her and her friends have a really strong distaste for this whole trans trendy explosion that’s going on,” said Kim. “But the more I hang out with her the more I’m com­pletely convinced she’s a closet trans case: She’s ob­sessed with operating sexually as a male. Completely obsessed. She doesn’t make any reference to being queer or lesbian at all. And she sees all of her lesbian traits-either emotional or physical-as completely negative. I’ve never met anyone who wishes that she was a guy so much.” Kim thought about it for a minute and concluded, “Whereas a butch is some­body who is, I guess, a little more comfortable with the fact that she actually is female.”

Why the fuck would a lesbian want to “operate sexually as a male?” I used to date men, and I switched to women for a reason. Women are way better. I don’t want my partner to “operate sexually as a male,” I want her to operate sexually as a female. To me, “operate sexually as a male” means be a fucking asshole who is selfish in bed and only wants to fuck and doesn’t give a shit about me getting anything out of it. These women would please their partners way better as butch women than as pseudo-“men.” Is their goal during sex to please their partners, or is it to confirm their “identities?”

“This all ties into their kind of approach to women in general-they are so very predatory about it. Clara won’t just touch on it like That girl’s hot. She will talk and talk and talk about how she wants to get them home and fuck them.” She looked at Diana. “I’m nervous to see her now because I’m not dressed up. And then all of a sudden it’s like I’m trying to please a guy. It’s like I’ve come full circle.”

This woman Clara sounds like she wants to be exactly like a male porn star. (And you know, there actually is a lesbian who turned into a male porn star—Buck Angel. What a role model!)

By the way, if you want to be an asshole in bed, that’s not sex-positive, that’s sex-negative.

I don’t want anything to do with this lesbian-porn-star community. Give me a group of herbal tea drinking, politically correct lesbian separatists any day over this I Wanna Be A Teenage Boy Pimp nonsense. A butch woman should be a handsome, dapper woman who knows how to treat her girlfriend right, and if she likes to be on top, that’s great, but that doesn’t mean she has to be a misogynist dickhead with a fear of being emasculated. It’s entirely possible to be a top and also a good person at the same time.

These fucking kids need to get the fuck off my lawn!