The first article I read this week was Guilty Pleasures: Pornography, Prostitution, and Stripping by Jackson Katz. It is an understatement to say that this isn’t my normal reading material. Overall, the article mostly focuses on the porn industry and how it is having a negative effect on the young men growing up today. This topic is one that I have never heard come up in conversation or brought up in an article because sex is still a topic that people don’t want to talk about. Katz said, “some men avoid this sort of introspection because it is still awkward to talk honestly about sex in this culture, and they are embarrassed”. This was in regard to how porn sort of grooms men into thinking that they have to be dominant and violent in order to please a woman and to please themselves, because this is what they are seeing on their computers. I think that this is valid in a sense. The author of the article mentioned people being opposed to porn as a whole because of these types of videos. I don’t think this should be the case. By opposing the porn industry as a whole, you are putting out into the world that sexual activity is something to be ashamed of. I think that what needs to start happening is that there needs to be more open sex ed courses in schools. If teens are going to find this content anyway, it would be stupid not to have more open dialogue about sex and how what they are see is fantasy. There is no shame in wanting to partake in what they are seeing on the screen, as long as it is with a consenting partner. I think this is the vital point. Men ( and other people who commit violent, sexual assaults) that are getting these ideas from porn may have been deterred if someone had an open and sincere conversation about sexuality and consent. Are there shit people in these industries? Absolutely. But you aren’t going to be able to take them down. We need to reform what we are teaching our youth so they don’t have to turn to porn as their only sexual education.
And on another topic that people are too scared to talk about, I read It’s Time to End the Long History of Feminism Failing Transgender Women by Tina Vasquez. As someone who isn’t the most educated about all the facets of feminism, my jaw dropped reading this article. When I thought about feminism, I never thought there were assholes out there who excluded transpersons from their movements. How can you just pick and choose who you want equal rights for? How is that any different than people arguing in the mens favor in a debate about the male/female pay gap? There are no equal rights until there are equal rights for all. From my understanding, if sounds like these trans-exlusionary feminists are still supportive of other LGBT+ groups. If you aren’t going to support the group as a whole, don’t bring it up. Thats’s not the kind of representation we want. My favorite part of the article was its call to action: “it’s time to expose trans-exlusionary feminists for who they really are”. We aren’t going to allow people to decide who deserves rights and acceptance and who doesn’t. There is still a lot of transphobia in society today. There are still a lot of people who are unwilling to accept people who are different than them. News flash, people. You don’t have to be a part of the community to not be an asshole toward them.