Holy SHIT I just had an epiphany.

(Oh, and sorry for being gone - I've been trying to graduate and get this political novel done..)

You know so-called "cisgender privilege"? It doesn't apply to me. It doesn't, in fact, apply to any but the very few women who fit INTO the gender binary! (Dunno 'bout men - but it's a good bet.) "Cisgender" assumes that, EVEN IF YOU ARE NOT COMFORTABLE WITH YOUR GENDER, you PASS as female fairly well.

I do not.

And I'm fucking tired of being told that I have this "privilege" that, when looked at from a feminist viewpoint, looks a whole lot like the same ol' female oppression.

I'm not denying that transpeople are discriminated against, hated, beaten and killed for being transsexual - that would be fucking stupid - but the whole thing about me having privilege for supposedly-but-not-really fitting into a gender binary I don't WANT to fit into and which OPPRESSES me has GOT TO STOP.

And for gods' fucking sakes, no, it does NOT apply to men - who are, in fact, handed many things on a platter (including respect, deference and bodily autonomy/integrity) by virtue of their being MALE. Period. The gender binary has gotten a whole lot more loose for men that it has for women - look at how guys are allowed to be "sensitive" (and still getting away with rape during such pretendership) but women are called "ballbusters" and/or "overly emotional" if they try to be in the LEAST bit aggressive and/or assertive.

"Cisgender privilege" doesn't exist for me - sorry, but no, I'm just as oppressed by not fitting into the gender binary as YOU are. Except that YOU want to "reform" it - which makes about as much sense to me as does eating "happy" meat but saying you want animals to have rights. Uh, not gonna happen.

Eating Disorders: Recovery?

(I'm still here! I've just been distracted with trying to graduate. I'll make a flocked post later to let y'all know what's been going on.)

So I was talking to a vegan friend of mine online and she told me that she relapsed into her eating disorder again. She put it like so: she'd gained weight at college, people started noticing, and so once she went home she figured that it would be a chance to become thin before she went home for college. And it's not like any of us eating disordered people can do anything half-assed.

Really, that's just fucked up. Well, okay, so several things about it are fucked up: first things first, that she even developed an eating disorder in the first place. Let's face it, we are absolutely neurotic about women's bodies. Be thin but not too thin! Be light-skinned but not too light-skinned! Make sure you eat but not too much! Exercise but sweaty and muscular women are gross! Etc. etc. etc. etc.etc.etc.

Women are faced with the choice to eat or not eat every day, and the praise goes heavily to those who choose not to. When I lost 30 lbs. in less than a month through starving myself, the praise was endless. "How did you do it?" and "What's your secret?" and "I'm so jealous!" up the fuckin' wazoo! There really wasn't an end to that shit and really, this is the way eating disorders begin - or continue. If being thin weren't, as Marya Hornbacher called it, "considered a strange state of grace", then perhaps she - perhaps we both - could have chosen a less deadly way to keep, as I have called it, a "safety blanket".

Something you must understand is that eating disorders do not appear in a vacuum. Eating disorders appear where there is at least the public condemnation of desire - and when it comes to desire for food, women have loads of that to spare. Women's appetites are overwhelmingly condemned: slut, pig, whore. If you're female, you know the shtick. (Pornography, by the way, contributes to this by making a subliminal connection between "women who desire" and "women who deserve punishment" through the massively and largely brutal lines of films featuring, as their main attraction, women being hurt because they desire. Just because they act like they like it doesn't mean they actually do.)

It's amazing, really it is, that more women aren't becoming anorexic, since it seems such an easy way out. But we are also put into a materialistic culture, one that demands rather than asks for excess consumption of all things - whether it's gadgets or food. This is paired with a cultural neurosis about fat (which is, actually, relatively harmless). The result? Massive epidemic of eating disorders.

I'm not talking about anorexia and bulimia anymore, or any eating disorder (commonly dismissed as ED-NOS, or Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified) that covers exclusively or largely the symptoms of those two. I'm speaking about all eating disorders: we have a cultural neurosis about women's bodies and that is causing women to flee in hordes to the safety and relative comfort and security of eating disorders.

Because you can't control that jackass on the street who just called you a fatass. You can control what you put into your mouth. Or, rather, you can't control all the people who tell you, "fat is unhealthy YOU'RE GOING TO DIE DIE DIE DIE DIE!!!!!!!!!11!1" (yeah, shows a real big concern for my health, practically gloating in the (false) idea that I'm going to die an early death from being fat). But you can make the feeling of being utterly hated - by yourself or by others - go away with food... either by refusing it or gorging on it. (And I am by no means saying that fat people get to being fat because they gorge; usually they do it by dieting.)

See, here's the thing. It's not just fat people they hurt with this fat-people-must will-die rhetoric. It's the thin people, too. They're literally causing girls to become eating disordered because they are projecting so much of their own fucking appearance-insanity upon other people.

That's fucked up.

Now, I don't have any Ph.D. in psychology, but I do have one thing that most of them don't: I lived it. I lived in that hell for two years, plus many more when I wasn't overtly eating disordered. (Of course, that brings up a question for myself: wasn't I? My mother is quite obviously eating disordered, now that I know how to look for the signs.) And I have one more thing that even more of them don't have: I got out.

I got out through veganism and raw foods. Like I said, I'm no Ivy League grad, but I do have that. And I do know that if you're ready to let go of that safety blanket - ready to let go of the eating disorder - then you've got to do it slowly, but make sure you keep progressing so that you don't slip back into it. I know that you'll have good days and you'll have okay days and you'll have very, very fucking bad days, but you've got to keep going.

Because, let's face it, being unhappy when you're in recovery doesn't even come close to the shit that goes down when you're unhappy and suffering quietly under your eating disorder. Face it. You know it's true, because if you've been there, if you've been in recovery, then you have tasted, just for that one little glimpse of time, the kind of hope that it would take to pull you through. And that little bit of hope can sustain you for a long, long time - we know that, too. We know that because we continue to watch the scale stay the same and we try drinking only broth and eating only vegetables or doing 2468 and we continue to hope even through our pain.

The hope of recovery is a better kind of hope.

See, the logic of eating disorder clinics is completely backwards. They make you gain weight first, then make you focus on how the food is just food. That's just bizarre. If you haven't made peace with food, how can you ever hope to not freak out when you see yourself in the mirror? It's so... off, I mean, they push you way past your limit until you just can't wait to get out of there so that you can relapse in peace. It's a weird, unintentional kind of reverse psychology. And I can't imagine why more doctors don't get that.

So, when you're ready to recover - when you are really, truly ready to give up that safety blanket and deal with the world on a shared set of terms instead of merely your own - when you are really, truly ready to get your personality back, to feel healthy, to feel good, to feel HAPPY! then you need to do these things, gradually.

You need to throw out your scale. This may come later or it may come sooner, but it is absolutely necessary.

You need to stop getting into material that triggers you. Really. Stop watching ANTM. Stop looking through fashion magazines. Throw out your TV if you must. Just STOP HURTING YOURSELF WITH THESE THINGS.

You need to start eating right. I'm biased because of what raw veganism has done for me, so of course I'm going to say that's best. But if it's not, you need to decide that for yourself.

You need to start going to therapy. Not group therapy; that just makes you feel like you're not "sick" enough or it gives you pride in being the sickest one there. Cherry-pick your psychologist so that you KNOW they have experience and expertise in treating eating disorders and, if you have BED, then someone who won't hold up weight-loss as your ultimate goal.

You need to find someone who will understand, who is already in recovery and won't let you slip back in. If you want me to do this, don't hesitate to ask me, because I've been there.

You need to throw out all your "thin foods" or your "binge foods", the foods you use to make yourself hungry or tide you over when you're starving/binging, and you need to never fucking touch them again. Life is too short for celery sticks. It's also too short for processed cookie crap that you don't really taste. I mean it.

You need to develop a healthy eating plan (note: NOT A DIET) that will allow you to be full without being too full and that will allow you to progress slowly towards your goals of healthiness.

You need to never go on a diet. Ever. Going on diets will merely trigger your eating disorder again. Do not starve yourself in any way.

And finally, you need to listen to your body. It deserves better than punishment from you and, let's face it, an eating disorder is punishment both for you and for your body. You may think you feel better, but it's a false kind of "better" and furthermore, you deserve to feel better all the time - not just when you're starving or binging. Eat when you're hungry. Stop when you're satisfied, rather than sedated. On special occasions, feel free to eat more than you would otherwise, because that's animal nature - food is not just fuel, it's love.

Thank you and goodnight.
<lj user=sunnyskies>

Childfree vs. Childrights: Neither Side is Feminist

reason, many of these people have chosen to willfully ignore privilege, anti-choice laws and situations, sexism, and many other mitigating factors in favour of blaming the woman who “chose” to have children.

“Moos”, “breeders”, and all such words are inherently sexist (and speciesist, which is a point that many feminists, still caught up in their own internalised anti-animal feelings, miss), not only because they are typical insults towards women – calling a woman a “cow” is not an uncommon thing to hear – but because they reinforce stereotypes both about women and animals: that they’re stupid, amoral or immoral, sluts, "clown cars", and just too dumb to make any sort of choice for themselves. (Obviously none of this is true for either group.)

All of these words and anti-woman prejudice have a goal: to make women take responsibility for men’s systems and actions.

A common thread in the childfree community is that women have a choice, and mothers were just too dumb to make that choice. This ignores the fact that the anti-choice movement has been progressing steadily in taking women’s bodies away from them and putting them back into the hands of men who want to control them – rendering a meaningful amount of “choice” an impossibility for most, and an outright fallacy from those who use this argument. There is a parallel between how women and animals are treated here (as usual): society – not just men, but men often give their approval to the women who agree – blames them for a choice they are not able to make.

The word “duh”, applied to male parents (who are not necessarily “fathers” in any real meaning of the word) aims just as much at women. By casting the paternal side of the equation to be slack-jawed idiots, the childfree movement once again implicates women – this time using a much older part of the sexist mythology: that of the carnivorous woman, the woman who wants only to prey upon men and devour them (or their “seed”, as it is said – as if the sperm were the only active part of the process), devour their money, devour their time – the same myths that the MRAs (Men’s Rights Assholes) propose to stave off actual, terrifying equality. (It also implicitly encourages the abandonment of women who will not or cannot abort, lest one be thought of as “stupid”.) There is much to be said of the “oopsed” mythology in the childfree movement – particularly of how it is always applied to women, yet when men do it, it is almost always a sign of abuse. (Aside from being abuse in and of itself.)

In this, the childfree community allows men to get away scott-free with their own actions; they forget, or willingly ignore, that women can only bear one child accidentally (or, at most, two) – and they also forget or willingly ignore that there is a massive push in the United States to put women back in the home, where they are safely neutralised by diapers, dirty floors, and PTA meetings. (This is not true of all women – but we should not expect them to be “supermom”.) The fact that women have been increasingly turning away from college despite becoming the majority of people to graduate is not a mistake.

When one looks at the childfree movement on their own – though I understand that they are not so spiteful when around other people (though whether this is because they are polite because of self-preservation or otherwise is up for grabs) – there are immediate warning signs to anyone who harbors the slightest feminist leanings (and I shall leave you to discover most of these on your own, as they are far too many to list) – the most obvious of which is the amount of vitriol that is aimed at parents (read: mothers) who neither have the time or the money to support children entirely on their own.

To this argument I say: what of it? In an inherently corrupt system (capitalism) in which someone – or rather, many someones - must be the losers, why are we bogging ourselves down in petty critique of people who have little, if any, choice and socioeconomic mobility? It is like blaming the river for the flood when some guy blew up the dam.

Still, I do not accept the argument that procreating is a part of our DNA and therefore we are helpless to not do it; the same is said of meat-eating and dairy-eating, violence, rape, polygyny (note: not polyamory, but polygyny, its traditionally woman-hating marriagement counterpart), and the list goes on. And yet we live perfectly good, if not better lives without indulging in all of these supposedly DNA-commanded obligations.

Here are the facts: for someone in an industrialised country to procreate at this time is inherently harmful to all women, animals, children, and the planet herself. By procreating, we create another mouth to feed – and more importantly, who will consume. “Teaching morals” does not matter as much as you’d think: the second-wave feminists largely did not succeed in passing down their wishes to the next generation. Each new child is a luxury to anyone in an industrialised country while they are a necessity to those in developing countries, usually women, and each new child in an industrialised country takes more than their share of resources – resources that belong to the women and children of developing countries. The language that says that children are a right is utterly fatuous; the language that says that women have a right to their own bodies completely and utterly correct.

So, it turns out, in their general and most commonly-encountered states, neither side is truly feminist. One must look not just at choices, but at results – and situations.

Prompt: What isn't covered enough?

What isn't written about enough in today's world?
What's not said enough is - like many other answers in this prompt - the truth. However, my idea of truth is different from most of these people's. The truth is not just the fact that religion (which is by my definition organised) is fucking everything up, or the fact that Bush is betraying the people and destroying our hopes for a good future, but the things that you won't hear anywhere but the feminists. What needs to be heard more is the fact that one out of three women worldwide will be raped in her lifetime, that rapists are not psychopaths (in fact, they're ordinary men like the ones reading this), that last year more than a hundred abortion clinics - people trying to help women rather than take their bodies away from them like the anti-choicers - were attacked.

These are examples of the domestic terrorism that happens every day. And yet we protect the perpetrators - "alleged rape victim", "alleged attack", etc. - with no regard for the women involved. Yeah, ignore that - I'll bet you call ignoring women's pain and increasingly-smaller cages "truth". I'll bet you don't want to hear about that shit.

After all, they're just women.

"Hey, Dyke!": Women-Loving Sexuality in an Era of Hatred

Women's sexuality has historically been considered under one, two, or all of three of these categories: irrelevant, nonexistent, and dangerous.

I don't know when it started (though I have my suspicions), but at one point in time male humans began to think that female sexuality was irrelevant - which was the first step in sexually terrorising half the human population. With women's sexuality irrelevant, men could do literally anything to women that they liked - or command women to do it. There is good evidence for this fact: ancient Judeo-Christian mythology, except for telling women to keep their legs closed and dictating that women’s sexuality and menses were vile and dirty, virtually ignored women’s sexuality. Where men’s homoerotics were explicitly condemned (though one wonders how, exactly, they managed to justify that under a Patriarchal system that did not allow for loving the opposite gender), women’s were simply ignored. Women’s sexuality was irrelevant with other women because women did not matter; women’s sexuality with men was dangerous because men had “property rights” over “their” women, reiterated in the Ten Commandments in which women are likened to property (animals are too, but that’s a whole ‘nother post).

(Note: I am not arguing about religion in this post, nor am I saying it’s a bad thing that they didn’t explicitly call for the death of lesbians; it’s just not all that much of a good thing that they completely ignored women’s sexuality, and it came to the same end in any case: the hatred of lesbians.)

When your interests and rights are irrelevant even when they're being infringed upon, there's no end to what they can do to you.

Along the way to the present, it's been swinging back and forth from irrelevant + nonexistent or dangerous, sometimes both of the latter at the same time. Take the Victorian era: women’s sexuality was nonexistent, but when it did exist, it was dangerous. (This is what we in the know call, “having your cake and eating hers too”.) The trick here is that women were not actually supposed to be pure; men, after all, were rewarded in spades for philandering, and brothels were incredibly popular during this period.

No. Women were supposed to be obedient. That, and only that, was women’s virtue. It was not women’s pain that the S-shape corset-promoters wanted; it was their obedience. The extent to which a woman would hurt herself to be obedient was the extent of her worth. (It is mirrored historically in many other non-European societies as well, but I do not know them as well because the books on them are not as readily available here, so I won’t go into that, but suggestions for reading are heartily welcomed.) Likewise, the extent to which a woman would deny her body/desires to be obedient was the extent of her worth to the society. The personal was, of course, political.

Even today we see the same notes. Women deny themselves food in order to be obedient, and while society loves the thin and ultra-thin, it despises the emaciated anorexics because of how they throw the dynamics of dieting and women’s-weight-as-political into sharp relief. But there is a different dynamic with sexuality; I have said before that women have two choices: everything or nothing. That has not changed, but I have not elaborated on it.

Women’s sexuality is still constrained; it is even more constrained by pornography than it was before, as we are now supposed to model exactly the fantasies of men, no matter how brutal, frightening, torturous, or bizarre. And, as in the Victorian era, women’s compliance is not directly connected to how sexy/not sexy they are: it is connected to how obedient they are. Women’s compliance – while seeming to enjoy it of their own will – makes them desirable. The power men can have over a compliant woman determines how sexy the woman is.

This is why lesbians are hated – literally, fiercely, virulently hated – and why they are caricatured in pornography as either hairy, smelly man-haters or confused bisexual women longing for the touch of a cock. They refuse to live their lives obeying men – usually. Lesbians in the true sense of the word – women who live with and love women, romantically, sexually, intellectually, and in all other ways – do not willingly capitulate to the male desires of thinness, beauty/self-hatred-as-perfection, and passive-yet-compliant sexuality: they celebrate women’s bodies, sexuality, minds and emotions and work to free them and their choices from the strangling python-cock of Patriarchy.

(Note: “confused” and “bisexual” women do not automatically go together, but that is the stereotype of “lesbian” women in pornography.)

That is why lesbians are hated – and why they are routinely erased or ignored by Patriarchy. Lesbians cannot be real if Patriarchy is to survive, because lesbians are woman-loving and, most importantly, they do not need men.

Men hate that fact. (For those of you going “not all men!!!!”, refer to my disclaimer now.) They cannot stand the fact that lesbians do not need men, because men have a deep and abiding insecurity that they are not the be-all end-all of everything and the center of the universe. That is, after all, what men have been taught: that great men are the ones in control – of women, of animals, of children, etc. – and it galls them that this might not be true. Men who have accepted Patriarchy do not question this; even men who question it retain some of these vestiges.

The answer? Erase lesbianism from sight – or demonise it. (To be continued in Part II – "Prudes & Spinsters: Erasing Romantic Choice from Patriarchal Society". This is long enough..)

Pornography: The Gutter & the Pedestal

Yeah, the angry man-hating lesbian is gonna talk about pornography. Better run away, scary scary!

Along the way to equality, we seem to have gotten sidetracked. In Old Testament times and societies (well, the real ones, anyways), women were seen as evil, filthy. Their bodies were dirty and they made men unclean. They were weak, unfit to lead, and to be controlled. If they could not be controlled, they were to be killed.

We have progressed in minor ways from this mindset. For example, even though we still think that women's bodies are dirty and ugly -- take, for example, what seems to be the repulsion of most men towards women who haven't shaved their cunt -- we now fetishise their bodies out in the open, rather than fetishising them and thus forcing them to "cover up" or they'll get raped or worse.

Okay, I lied. That wasn't an example of how we progressed; it was an example of how we're still the same. One thing that you could consider progress is that, if we can't control a woman, instead of killing her, we demonise her and humiliate her. Nowdays, instead of calling women who refuse to be controlled whores and sluts and temptresses, we call them prudes, sex-haters, man-haters, cock-teases, bitches. Note that we have fairly few names to call women who do what men want them to do, but we have plenty of epithets to fling at women who don't do what men want -- namely, to give their lives and their bodies up to any man who wants them.

I can hear some men now, "That's not what I want in my girlfriend!" Well, you watch porn, don't you? And by searching out porn that you want, you are programming yourself to expect women to act just how you want in order to please you. (It works on women, too; I had a hefty dose of pornographic "education" around the age of 13 telling me that submissiveness was exactly how a man wanted me.)

Onwards. Later on, we started romanticising women and their nurturing "instincts", using that an excuse to force them to stay at home, clean, and raise children -- also, oddly enough, to get the vote. I shit you not. (For Her Own Good by Barbara Ehrenreich and Deirdre English) This went through a few phases; first, the mother's instincts were normal and inborn, keeping women from actually holding power; next, the mother's instincts were infantile and she had to regress to have them; then the mother's instincts were destructive, and would destroy her child if she let them surface. It may seem like we can't make our minds up about women. But, if you look closely, we can and have: women should -- no, they're obligated to do what men want them to, in a line of descending priority, starting with the husbands/boyfriends and then (in adulthood), if the woman is single, to all of manking. (Note: mankind.)

Finally we went into the Sexual Revolution (the one in the 60s, anyways) and things started looking up; women could have sex whenever they wanted, with whoever they wanted - or, well, so they thought. It became clear a ways through that what women's new "sexual liberation" was about was having sex with all men who wanted to unless one of those men wanted her to have sex with just him. And if you didn't you were a dyke and/or man-hater.

Nevertheless, what wasn't really women's choice was paraded as women's choice (and still is). Women could choose to do this for men, or they could suffer. I must relate now a scene I read in Ariel Levy's Female Chauvinist Pigs: it involves the filming of Girls Gone Wild. In that scene, they came upon some young women together, and after the film crew shouted at them to take it off, the crowd following them began to do the same. In a culture where gang-bangs (and -rape) are glorified, and mob mentality is a real, predictable threat, what do you think these women were thinking? "I can choose not to"? How about, "If I don't do this, I'm going to get hurt"?

What is strangest yet is that, amidst the flurry of the push for equality in women's rights to their own bodies, we have been doing two things: first, we have made choices, any choice a woman makes, out to be Feminist; second, we have made sure that women don't really think they can choose. Not comfortable with anal sex, pornography, oral sex? You'll never get a man. Are you willing to do all of these things and more? Well, that's your choice, and I believe in a woman's right to choose!

It's downright odd that people think this is some way "progressive", or that we live in a "post-Feminist" culture (alright, so third-wave Feminist individuality isn't all that Feminist, but it's not as though Feminism is unnecessary any longer). Throughout all of recorded history, it seems that women have never been seen as just people: not pure, not filthy, just as capable of great acts and selfishness as men are. Not necessarily sexy, but not a threat. These days, women's choices -- as long as they coincide with the wants of men -- are put on a pedestal, untouchable, just as their bodies are called "filthy" or "dirty" and fetishised.

This results in a rather bizarre piece of dichotomy on the subject of women: women are either dirty sluts or frigid bitches, and no one wants a woman who's bad in bed so you might as well take the slut. We are not liberated by these new "choices", the "choices" to consume other women and/or be consumed ourselves: we are trapped. We are stumbling in the dark, unsure of ourselves. He looks at those women, does he really find me attractive? If so, why isn't he masturbating to me? Is my body bad? I don't have big breasts, and I'm not that thin. I have to diet, and I have to get breast implants to keep him.

And then we wonder why women are so unhappy with themselves that they are embracing, en masse, eating disorders? You, men, say that eating disorders aren't hot, but you say hot as if it's an obligation for women to be -- to please you. And we know, because we see the pornography; we know that what pleases you is thinness. We've tried dieting before, so how are we going to get there any other way? We just want to feel good about ourselves. The problem is, you don't see that you're not giving us any other choice but to appeal to you to make us feel good about ourselves.

In order for us to be free, you have to put down your entitlement, that you need to see and masturbate to any woman available to you, that you have the right to tell us how we look just because we're walking down the street. You have to put down your pornography, and start looking at us for who we are. Not raging sex fiends, nymphomaniacs, not sluts who were "asking for it", not frigid man-haters or dykes or prudes. You have to see us for people. And pornography won't let you do that.

Women. We can't make men do this. We cannot. Yes, we can try to educate them, tell them how pornography makes us feel, and offer up support. But this is their addiction. They must realise that, if they love women, they must stop doing this. You can help them do this by not supporting their addictions, their "vices" as you so cutely call them, but they are ultimately responsible. And if the man in your life won't.. then you might have to make the choice between bruising his heart and being unsafe.

We all have to make a choice here.

(Note: this is a repost from my old blog.)

Feminist Standards: The Politics of Desperation

There's something that abolitionist vegans largely agree on: if you're not for human rights as well - or if you are against them - you're not a vegan; humans are animals too.

Unfortunately, this is not the same way for feminism. Anyone with two braincells to rub together - and figure out that women are entitled to equal pay for equal work* and to actually be, you know, considered (at least under the law) like actual people - can call themselves a feminist.

And somehow, this is treated like a badge of honour, especially for men. "Oh, hurr hurr hurr, yep, I think of women as people!" (You wanna fuckin' cookie or somethin'?) Except it's more complicated than "equal pay for equal work". It is an undeniable truth to anyone with enough brainpower to count to three that women, despite "the great accomplishments of feminism", still aren't treated as if they own their own bodies.

Especially not by the sex poxes.

See, there's a trick here going on, a very subtle deception. They do two things to deflect the realisation that sex poxes do not really support womens' choices: first, they insist that any choice a woman makes is a feminist one and is absolutely unquestionable; second, they paint radfems as "anti-sex", purposefully obfuscating the fact that supporting a narrow form of sex - sex-as-power-imbalance - is truly anti-sex because it obscures egalitarian sex that does not hold Patriarchal tenets - that male is sexy, that male is power, and therefore that power is sexy.

On the surface, the "sex poz" people appear to support women's choices - but they regularly denigrate "vanilla" sex** and insist that if you don't engage in sex that has violence and power imbalances as its core "hot factor", there's something wrong with you - you're religious, repressed, or just plain anti-sex. They also do not support women's speech - regularly casting women who speak out about the pain that the sex industry has caused them as "anti-sex", "prudes", and much of the same that they cast anyone outside of their justification/wank-party. Sometimes - alright, much of the time - sex poxes go so far to make threats against the women speaking out about this pain, as we see in the case of BitingBeaver and Heart.

More to the point, the sex poxes work against women's real choices by supporting the choices (and only the choices) of the Patriarchy. The Patriarchy, through pornography, prostitution, and stripping, sets up a false dichotomy of choices: fun (and being forced to do things you don't want) and boring, repressed piety (and not being able to do anything). Through these things, the Patriarchy keeps inducting men into a culture of woman-hatred - teaching them to refuse to see women as people instead of body parts, to fetishise power imbalances and situations in which one partner is more vulnerable than the other, to value force and dominance and power struggle over equality and gentleness and receptivity.

By supporting the choices of the Patriarchy, sex pozzes stifle the choices of egalitarianism and feminism.

That's got to stop.

A long time ago, when feminists were desperate to get women rights - any rights at all - they teamed up with bigots so that they'd be able to have some political impact. They allowed anyone to use the term "feminist" as long as they supported a key issue. Somehow, throughout the ages, that got translated into the minds of the populace as the right to call yourself a feminist and have no one question it. This is still going on, and we have to stop it if we have any hope of progressing towards a more feminist, if not totally feminist, future - there are people calling themselves feminist who support the Patriarchal standard for women. And that just ain't right.

So next time someone tells you they're a "sex-positive feminist", tell them: "I'm sex-positive too. In fact, I'm so sex-positive that I'm anti-pornography/prostitution." Feminists cannot support every choice in the world; for example, rape is a choice too. If feminism is to survive, we have to take the term back - and away from the reactionary, regressive sex poxes.

*Though they rarely mean this, as evidenced by the extraordinary number of justifications for paying women less - having children and missing days at work so that they can take care of them (you know, being what rational people call decent parents - and speaking of which, why don't men give up a little of their privilege and stay home with a vomiting four-year-old? Oh right! Because that would be beneath the poor dears), etc.

**"Vanilla" being cast to mean PIV egalitarian sex, despite the fact that PIV sex is largely inegalitarian - but in reality it means "anything that doesn't have objectification and violence as a turn-on", therefore grouping PIV inegalitarian - and "boring and routine" - sex with actual feminist sex.