Saturday, 26 May 2012

Push It

Thanks to Mr Cake for the last post, and there will be more to follow. For now folks, this is me. There's a lot of talk about porn at the moment. Time for me to get in on the sex act. I wonder if this page will attract as many views from Russia as the one entitled 'Whores'?

Porn is everywhere. It is the ‘new’ way for kids to learn about sex. No different to the old way in some respects. I used to find porn in the woods (such a cliché that it seems almost impossible to believe, but it really did happen, and – after taking a walk along the river recently – I can confirm that it still does) or under my uncle’s bed. Kids still find porn, but there are some key differences in the way they do it. Nowadays, they can get it online, all the time. It’s moving images as well, so that makes a difference. It’s free, and that’s also very relevant. Additionally, the sheer range of available stuff is mind blowing. Within a few clicks, it’s possible to navigate to some very dodgy areas indeed. My first introduction to acts out of the ordinary (or perversion if that’s what you want to call it) was amputee related sex. It was, needless to say, from a mag under my uncle’s bed (Whitehouse, I think) and induced shock and laughter in equal measure. At the age I was then, the very fact of sex was shocking in any case. Since then I think I have at least glimpsed most of the possible curiosities that people can indulge in. There is a disturbing prevalence of violence and rape imagery in much of the stuff online these days, and that is definitely not a good thing.

That said, I’m not one for censorship in any form (though I have paused more than once when presented with material on TV with my kids present. Most recently, their imploring me to allow them to watch The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo led to some interesting discussions, let me tell you...). Context is vital, and part of this is talking to kids about what they’re watching, and not just allowing it to enter their consciousness willy-nilly.

In answer to the latest bout of hysterical bullshit from Cameron et al - get over it! We all masturbate. Remember that documentary repeated recently about the bloke with the small cock? He said he had never had a wank in his life. Wholly remarkable and very unusual. Apart from the odd curiosity like him, everybody’s doing it, etc. If we accept this, and accept that we can’t all have a sexual partner (indeed, even if we do, sometimes a solo performance is the preferred option) at all times, then porn is a useful aid in getting us where we need to be.

So should we change it? At the risk of being ridiculed, I would align – in some ways – with Alain de Botton on the subject. If it’s there, and if it isn’t going to go away, why not make efforts to change it? Is there decent material around already? This does raise rather a lot of questions of course. How do we cover the fetish areas? Where do we draw the line in acceptability of these fetishes? I suppose that the law isn’t much fucking use, so we would need to consider some arbitrary code of morality. When I say arbitrary, I mean, for example, some of the following:

Who am I to judge someone who likes being thwacked having a good time with someone who likes giving a good thwacking? Or someone who likes to pour on others – or have poured on them – non sexual bodily fluids? For example. Not only do neither of these activities interest me at all, they actively turn me off, but - hey - if you want to do it and you’re not causing anyone any harm, then go for your life. I would suggest that as long as the activities are between consenting adult humans then it’s OK. Anything which involves minors (‘18’ – yeah right! – seems to be the suggested age of majority) animals or coercion is not allowed. But what does that mean if we consider people who appear to be underage, but are in fact over 18? What of other ‘acted out’ scenarios? Are they OK? And does their erotic power decline for the fetishist by knowing that they are acted out, leading to an underground industry producing the real thing? Even if you do ban stuff, people still have these urges. They always did and always will. In any case, isn’t the production of this kind of material in contravention of the moral code, if not any legal one?

There are no easy answers. Are there ever? I think we can only try to allow our kids a bit of freedom to make up their own minds about this very complex area of human existence, and give them a bit of credit for trying to get through it. That doesn't mean simply banning all sexual imagery, does it?

No comments: