"...it's not the training to be mean but the training to be kind that is used to keep us leashed best." ~ Black Dog Red

"In case you haven't recognized the trend: it proceeds action, dissent, speech." ~ davidly, on how wars get done

"...What sort of meager, unerotic existence must a man live to find himself moved to such ecstatic heights by the mundane sniping of a congressional budget fight. The fate of human existence does not hang in the balance. The gods are not arrayed on either side. Poseiden, earth-shaker, has regrettably set his sights on the poor fishermen of northern Japan and not on Washington, D.C. where his ire might do some good--I can think of no better spot for a little wetland reclamation project, if you know what I mean. The fight is neither revolution nor apocalypse; it is hardly even a fight. A lot of apparatchiks are moving a lot of phony numbers with more zeros than a century of soccer scores around, weaving a brittle chrysalis around a gross worm that, some time hence, will emerge, untransformed, still a worm." ~ IOZ

Sep 27, 2010

Dick, Tit, Pussy and Asshole

How does the sight of a penis harm another person? How does a child suffer harm from seeing a dick? Another man? A woman who didn't specifically choose to see it, but who has no actual contact with it? What about the phallic member generates so much wrong and evil, that removing it from its cloth confinement will result in a lifetime of condemnation and ostracism, if not prison and the sex offender registry?

How does a publicly exposed breast harm the person(s) seeing it? Assuming for a moment that ten people walking down the street see an exposed boob they don't want to see, what exact part of this experience causes them so much damage that the State must prevent it, or punish the alleged offender?

Why does the attachment of a hungry baby polymorphously perverse little shit and vomit factory to the tit magically transform it into a legally viewable body part?

What about the naked vagina so degrades public morality that the mere sight of it must meet with puritanical jeremiad (religionist and feminist) and punitive complaint? Why must the public protect itself from the advent of the pussy, liberated from pants and panties, open to the warmth of the sun, or the chill kiss of ice and snow, if that fancies the possessor of it? Will the universe rend itself asunder? Will the gods fall from their thrones? Will every man become, of a sudden and without recourse to self-control, a heartless and immovable rapist?

(Unless someone has brought a camera into the room and wants to make a dollar off of it, of course...then, it becomes a matter of economic ideology...)

And what of the anus? Why so much disgust and sophomoric humor associated with the end point of the digestive tract, and what comes out of it - or goes into it?  Why not horror at all the filth that goes into the beginning of that tract, so much that people ought to wear down their teeth, or break them, before they ever get as fat as they do? Why must we have "fat awareness," but shy away from the asshole through which we waste what ought never have gone in in the first place? I mean, if you have to obsess about the asshole at all, why as a society do we care what gay men or "kinks" might or might not do with theirs - when so many straight people use it to squander half the world's food, and most of the world's consumable wealth?...

Is it possible, perhaps, that the harm and trauma don't magically arise from the exposure of the organs, but from the morality, belief, concealment and reactions to them? That the prurient-prudery of nannies, scolds, grundies, dworkins and pastoral meddlers provides the real harm - rendering the concealed flesh in sin tones and salacious detail, depriving it of both the light of day, and the banality of everyday exposure - of the harmlessness of visible hairlines and cheekbones, of fingertips and neck fat?

20 comments:

almostinfamous said...

i think you must be taking crazy pills

Jack Crow said...

Why?

Would you ask that question if the title of the post read only "Boobies!"?

What about generative or waste organs makes people squirm?

The only pills I take, by the by, are ibuprofen. Not that I have anything against drugs or chemical self-editing. It's just hard to run a strong five on the recoup from "partying"...

Anonymous said...

violet needs to read this.

Anonymous said...

Objections by radical feminists to porn come from a completely different direction than religious ones do, and painting them with the same brush would seem to be missing the point.

Jack Crow said...

Anon @ 4:52 AM,

I can include items in a series without believing, asserting or implying that they share similar origins, because they share similar effects.

I could include a list of immune disorders, for example, when discussing treatment or social accommodation - without having to state in advance that the listed disorders do not share a single cause.

Fair enough?

Charles F. Oxtrot said...

I didn't read where Jack said the religionists and feminists come from the same place, using the same objections.

Whether' one's 'fraidy-cat stance is rooted in having suffered sexual abuse as a young woman, or in a bizarre "morality" that essentially wants to deny all pleasure connected with sexual behavior, the end result to the one chided is the same. Chiding based in a personal irrational abhorrence, which is foisted on another as if to mandate the other's abhorrence as a mutuality.

I don't want to have that thing in common with feminists or religionists.

I change into riding clothes at the trailhead whenever I do out of town rides. I shuck to my birthday suit. If it scares another trailhead occupier, tough shit. I assume humans know what humans look like when they're naked, and I'm not trolling for sexual activity. I'm just changing clothes.

Jack Crow said...

Precisely, Charles.

And I type this as a fairly modest, straight, monogamous sort of guy.

I may not ever find myself in a position to display my parts, but I just don't understand the objection to the parts themselves.

Seems like magical thinking to me - that the sight of gonads and bottomsides causes people to lose their minds...

lunch said...

Some things you just have to take on faith. Clothing has been universal for longer than history. There must be a reason for it that transcends keeping the flies off and staying warm. If we take your modest (!?) proposal one more step, why should there be any objection to the public conjunction of these hidden body parts.

Anonymous said...

Jack,

Okay, I think I understand your point better. But someone might disapprove of porn, say, because of widespread exploitation of women in its production, or because depictions of women in porn are (in my experience, which is one reason I can't stand to watch porn anymore) overwhelmingly misogynist. Which doesn't seem irrational to me, whether you agree or disagree.

I feel like Andrea Dworkin deserves better than to be used as a label for irrationality.

Joseph (Anon @ 4:52 AM)

Jack Crow said...

Lunch,

"Some things you just have to take on faith. Clothing has been universal for longer than history. There must be a reason for it that transcends keeping the flies off and staying warm."

This is an appeal to magical thinking, and to tradition. If that's your thing, so be it. But it's not an argument. It's an implied demand that no argument or dispute continue.

Surely you can take a better whack at the questions in the original?

~ Jack

Jack Crow said...

Joe,

I really wasn't thinking about porn (except the oblique reference to the transformative effect of the dollar, on tolerance for nudity). I have little personal tolerance for porn. It's banal, trite, exploitative, stupid and fascist.* Pornography asks us to accept people as puppets, as aggregates of exchangeable manufactured parts, even more so than other forms of commercial cinema.

I was really just imagining the quotidian, with the original questions. What about the exposed breast, penis, vagina and anus can cause another person harm?

What's the mechanism?

As for Dworkin - I loathe her work and her life. That won't change in the conceivable future. She might have tried, later, to wriggle out of her "all sex is rape" position, but it's right there on the page, and she meant it.

Respect,

Jack

*- "...pornography - the prurience of the concealed angle, the alleged objectivity of the camera lens, the incipient fascism of predetermined experience, the glee and horror of commentary and condemnation."

http://the-crows-eye.blogspot.com/2010/01/pornography-covering-haiti.html

lunch said...

I'm too lazy is try to stop the great flywheel of society, habit. Don't see the magic thinking here, however.
If one tries to interrogate every aspect of tradition without prioritizing, one wastes his time, or risks it.

Jack Crow said...

Lunch,

I highlighted the magical thinking:

"Some things you just have to take on faith. Clothing has been universal for longer than history. There must be a reason for it that transcends keeping the flies off and staying warm."

Poop has also existed for longer than history, right? There must be a reason for it that transcends wasting the consumed matter which the digestive track cannot or does not process, no?

The sun has existed longer than history. There must be a reason for the light, right?

lunch said...

Don't see any meaning for the existence of poop beyond the obvious stuff you mention. Everything produces poop. Clothing is different. Among social animals only humans indulge so far as I know. I suspect the modesty aspects transcend the basic functions l mentioned but not functionality itself. My guess is that it has to do with living in groups, the division of labor, reinforcing gender identity, and isolating and/or limiting sexual intercourse to group-defined-and-approved times, places and persons.

The sun came up this morning and disappeared this evening. I suppose it IS magical thinking to believe that it will come up again tomorrow (and, in fact, define tomorrow.)

Just spinning a yarn here and wasting your time. So this is my last word. Proceed to chop my up. :-)

davidly said...

Hi Lunch: I think that clothes - in addition to keeping us warm and giving us a creative outlet in decorating ourselves - provide a certain level of comfort, physically speaking.

But I think that's really beyond Jack's original point. Should we be puritanical cover-uppers? Flipping out at the sight of breasts or genitalia?

And to extend that modest proposal:
Is there suddenly gonna be rampant public acts of copulation, just because we decided not to maintain its outlaw status? I doubt it.

It's an awful lot of self-perpetuating shame, if you ask me.

Charles F. Oxtrot said...

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/florida/fl-miami-prosecutor-arrest-20100927,0,7112463.story

Jack Crow said...

Chickens coming home to roost, for the prosecutor - but a great illustration.

Thanks, Charles.

*

Davidly,

I think the shame and concealment do more damage than might be considered, at first glance.

Which is not me advocating for adult-child sexuality - in case anyone misunderstands.

As a person who was molested as a child, I can honestly state that I had no context for the sexual contact. It was a violation, certainly. But I didn't know that. What made me scared was the order, backed with violence, to conceal it. With the knowledge that somehow it must be wrong, if I was supposed to be terrified of anyone finding out. I don't know if it's different for children who had a moral or sexual understanding of what was being done to them. I cannot imagine being older than nine or ten, and being able to know its wrong, but still without the effective capacity to put it to end, especially if fear and violence are factors.

*

I knew a priest who had a girlfriend for the better part of two decades (I didn't know this, when I was a child). When he was finally caught and defrocked, a mutual friend reported that he was happy to get caught, because he was sick of hiding it. He felt no guilt over his acts, or his love for the woman - only the necessary (if he wanted to keep his job) deception caused him real harm and shame.

*

Still, I'm not really getting on about clear acts of violation (rape, molestation, refused or unwanted touching, harassment).

What I want to know, I guess, is the mechanism of harm, in seeing a generative organ. Since it's prosecutable, and highly taboo - I'd really like those who support the taboos, and the criminalization, to explain how the harm actually works.

Respect,

Jack

marcus said...

Lenny Bruce had a bit about this: "How is it - and the records are there for you to view - that consistently, the sex maniacs that violate your daughters, murder them after they violate them, have good religious backgrounds, consistently? Is it a little possible that these guys came from that kind of family where the father might have been that moralist who went on public record to say, 'I wouldn't show my kids any pictures of half-nude tramps! No tramps run around my house half naked!' And everybody covers up, and the kid goes, 'Christ, what can that look like? How erotic can it be? How erotic that my father's such a nut telling my sister to cover up- and she's only six years old- that he would go on public record to make an issue of it? Well, I'm gonna to see what that looks like someday, and if its as dirty as my old man says it is, I'm gonna kill it.'
Give me your next sex maniac, and every time I'll show you: 'We don't understand, he had a good religious background!' I'm hip he did, man. Yeah. And he's gonna pay the dues for it."

Lenny and Nietzsche talked about how it's the small number of perverts or impotents among us who come up with these religious rules, in the case of the former (which is my focus here) because they can't control themselves. Gay homophobes are a striking example.

Which leads to the idea of puritanism/feminism opposing pornography and the sexual depiction of women in general. Isn't the basis of forcing women to wear veils and so on that if a man sees too much skin he'll be driven into a rape frenzy? That is, "to protect the women." But as Lenny demonstrates, eventually the women are soiled by this, by their own vulnerability to penetration, considered filthy seductresses.

Is that misogyny, to say that men are so weak of will that we cannot help but rape a woman should we see her ankle, wrist, lip, nipple (depending on cultural fetish)?

As a straight man I find that quite insulting. No doubt women take plenty of abuse in this cycle too, but it includes and maybe starts with a bias against the straight male. Men are pigs, women are Sirens, I guess it's just a matter of taste which you consider a greater slander, but which would you rather be called, a helpless beast or a god?

There are consequences for sex, (and more so before/without birth control, condemns, safe abortions, penicillin) unwanted pregnancy, STDs, and maybe sexual obsession. These consequences are no doubt the origin of "sin", yet through tradition a whole other realm is created: the mystical crime.

Feminism, being newer, is closer to addressing the basic consequences, but, I submit, is actually on the same trajectory as religious prudism, and that is especially so because feminism generally takes on the statist/totalitarian perspective of enforcing morality as law (sin) rather than encouraging people to make decisions they think are mentally/physically healthy.

For example I have no problem with Jack criticizing pornography, because I'm guessing he doesn't want the government to implement his taste on us all with their guns and cages.

marcus said...

Follow up on my last point, forgive me for the long-windedness, in James Michener's Return to Paradise he talked about how before the missionaries invaded Tahiti there were no child molesters, insanity, suicide, but then the Christians came, told the natives to cover up their bodies, forbid dancing, told them about Sin, priests molested children, and immediately he started seeing nervous breakdowns, the emergence of sexual perversions, suicides and so on. I read it many years ago, and this is just my paraphrase, but Michener saw many of these South Pacific cultures undergo the Christian invasion, and the effects were profound.

Jack Crow said...

Marcus,

Sorry I missed this so long ago. I see correlation, but I have no idea as to cause.

Respect,

Jack