When people confuse punishment with justice, rights become a method for securing revenge and little more.
I’m also bringing this over here from Twitter, Because.
"How could anyone ever trust a ‘yes’ in your consent model?" Well, that’s exactly the question, isn’t it?
This is a for-real thing that was said on Twitter.
MRA CONCERN TROLL: it’s the idea that you can retroactively revoke consent to sex that is worrisome. from “Ooh baby, do it to me!” to “i didn’t consent even though I said, ‘ooh baby do it to me’ so it was rape.” how could someone ever possibly trust a “yes” in your consent model?
ME: Well, that’s exactly the question, isn’t it? The whole point is that “yes” is necessary but not sufficient for consent. How do you trust an utterance that’s made in any other context where you don’t have a contract? Certainly, no reasonable person would argue that just because a given interaction or relationship lacks an enforceable contract, nobody in that interaction can ever trust what the other person says to them.
But you develop that trust in a sexual relationship the same way you develop it in any other relationship. If someone says “ooh baby, do it to me” and *still* feels like their boundaries were violated by the way you did it to them afterwards, that suggests there are some real problems in your relationship. And those problems might be more important ones to address than whether or not you technically had permission.
Ultimately, I don’t think you’re asking the right question. People retroactively realize their boundaries were violated all the time, regardless of what we say about it. (We’re just saying it’s okay to talk about that.) So, the important question isn’t, “How can you ever have sex if you don’t trust your partner’s yes?” It’s “If you don’t trust someone’s yes, why would you ever have sex with them?”
MAYMAY: This exchange perfectly showcases what we’ve been saying. Objections to Consent-as-Felt are coming from folks who want to have sex more than they want to have even a minimally respectful relationship, even and arguably especially if that r’ship spans only one sexual encounter. Their problem is “but consent is such a *hassle*!” That’s why Consent-as-Felt is so useful right now, today. Asking ppl about it is like using a rapist detector.
BDSM is fascism applied to sex; it’s the eroticization of dominance and the paternalistic idea that dominated peoples need domination to be fulfilled.
Dominance expressed sexually even has a word. That word is rape. Rape is sexual dominance. Sexual dominance is rape.
- There is a difference between having hot, kinky sex and being into BDSM.
- The BDSM community isn’t trying to end rape culture. They’re trying to eroticize it.
- When people defend BDSM as “a lifestyle” they are using “their culture” as a shield against criticism.
[Note, I do not partition my terminology the way the author of this post does. So, I agree with them on the thing they’re talking about being bad, but don’t have a ‘that thing == BDSM’ word use.]
Anyway, I saw this post previously, and it was one of those things that I read but don’t get the meaning from - like, I know the main idea it connects to, and I can read the post as ‘strong vehemence for that opinion’, but if there’s a new thought of some sort in it too I’m not getting it. And the word fascism was an epicenter for that I think because it is one of those words that tends to be used more for vehemence than meaning [that’s not a criticism of anything, it’s about me and my information processing and is here as the context for the next part]
Well then today I saw it again on twitter, only also today I was watching Agents Of SHIELD 2x03 before that which involved some Hydra monologuing around their whole ‘not-freedom is better for people’ thing. And, well, Hydra are Nazis. As so while this isn’t actually what fascism is, when I saw this post again, it’s therefore the first thing that came to mind. And - it took me a moment to realize that it actually works perfectly, and for me promptly gives meaning to the quote. Hydra-ism applied to D/s. ‘Freedom is bad, so you need to take over’.
(It’s also interesting to me to contrast this with what I call authoritarianism. In authoritarianism, you say ‘the rules should be obeyed because they are the rules and authorities should be obeyed because they are authority’. That’s an/the axiom of the morality. While this (which I’m referring to henceforth as dominion, at least for now) is a utility thing rather than a morality one. ‘When people have freedom that’s bad for them/for the world, and the way to fix this is to take dominion and end that, and then that’ll be better’. (er, to be very clear, I strongly disagree with both these things, it’s just interesting because one would generally tend to categorize them together so it’s interesting to look at the philosophical differences)).
My! You do have a fondness for words. :) Whereas I have a fondness for polemicism, which is both why I pay close attention to the words I use and informs my choice of words in the first place.
Regardless, I’m glad you found yourself primed (as in psychology) to revisit this quote today. That’s the other thing I have a fondness for: PHENOMENAL COSMIC MEANINGS, itty-bitty linguistic space (as in Alladin, circa 1992). As with many rhetoricians, I quite often dress semantics down as etymology, but an etymological discussion (which word is the best word) is not nearly as interesting to me as a semantic one (which meaning offers the most multivalent interpretation).
And now everyone who follows me has a bit more context about WTF I’m doing when I’m doing it. Hopefully that will mean less confusion and result in fewer violent responses.
Yo for serious why is this shit not trending on Twitter? Hashtag won’t fit on your bumper-sticker-sized-attention span?
Get consent, not just permission. #ActuallyUsefulSexualAssaultAwarenessSlogans
Consent is a feeling she has about her relationship with you, not just a word she says to you. #ActuallyUsefulSexualAssaultAwarenessSlogans
Buying her dinner might get you her permission but you can never buy her consent. #ActuallyUsefulSexualAssaultAwarenessSlogans
C’mon, Tumblr. Do your thing.
- “Consent and permission are two different things. Your first clue is that they are two different words.”
- Another small rant:
any exploration of relationships to power that don’t fit the traditional paradigm has the capacity to reorganize social space in a way that undermines the ability of powerful people to be powerful.
Dinner for two: $69.
There are some things money can’t buy. For everything else, there’s MasterCard.
In the realms of gender, sexual orientation, and relationship configuration, there has been a HUGE creative explosion of new language to better describe/express our diverse and evolving identities.
For the most part, this semantic expansion of identity space has been embraced and celebrated, especially among young people who viscerally understand how ill-suited binary frameworks are to describing our real lives.
So, now, I can identify as an AFAB gender-questioning agender soft-butch panromatic demi bisexual queer solopoly relationship anarchist. (I’m not being facetious. Those are all ways that I identify.)
These are only some of the dozens, maybe hundreds, of non-binary identity labels people use to describe themselves. And while we may giggle self I deprecatingly about how this leaves everybody with a Tumblr tagline half a mille long, it seems generally accepted that it’s a good thing for people to have lots of different words to talk about ourselves with, and to be able to make new words up if none if the current words quite fit.
And yet, if you suggest to BDSMers (who insist that “kinky” is a “sexual orientation”) that there might be kinky people who identify and experience an erotic relationship to power outside the traditional Dom/Sub/Switch paradigm, and that we might need new words to talk about that…they blow a gasket.
Why is that?
Because any exploration of relationships to power that don’t fit the traditional paradigm has the capacity to reorganize social space in a way that undermines the ability of powerful people to be powerful.
And contrary to their endless protestations about being “an oppressed minority,” there is absolutely nothing unique or novel and there never has been anything remotely culturally controversial or rare about social norms in which one half of a given whole had the explicitly sanctioned ability to use violent force against the other’s will.
Stop trying to make me feel like I’m not a “real” Submissive if I don’t want to be raped.
Not wanting to be raped does not make you “vanilla.”
This needs to be said more often than it is.
I'm really intrigued by the notion of having sex tied up in some way.
You should totes join us, then! We'll show you the ropes. We'll even teach you to like stuff you didn't know you liked!
That sounds…interesting…but…I'd rather just do this stuff I know I like, first.
Oh sure, sure, that's fine! That's great, even. After you're tied up, you should check out this thing with pain I'm totally into!
Uh…thanks, but no thanks.
Well, it's okay if you're not kinky, you know.
I am kinky.
You don't seem kinky to me; a real submissive would be happy to let a Dominant push their limits.
I told you, I'm really only interested in this one thing for now. I don't want to have my "limits pushed," I think this thing is hot and I want to play around with it together with someone I feel safe with.
Maybe you're just a sensation slut, then.
Well, if you're really kinky, you may just think this is all you like now, but soon you'll find your limits and, we promise, you'll want to expand them. We can help with that. *wink wink*
You're making me really uncomfortable, please stop. Besides, my significant other isn't even Dominant.
Well there's your problem! You can't just go around having sex like that without any Dominants around! You're a submissive. You need a dominant. I mean, LOL, what would two submissives even do to each other?
But I *don't* want to have people "do things to me" right now, I just want to explore this thing I think I'll like. What does it matter if they're Dominant or not?
It matters because how will you ever expand your limits if you don't get into a relationship with a Dominant who can push them? You might as well just have "normal" sex.
What are you talking about? I want to explore this thing. You're right that I don't know for sure what I'll think of it but why do you assume this means I'm going to want to do MORE of that thing?
If you're really a submissive, you will. We know. You'll probably even start asking us for things you know that you *don't* like! We've seen it happen to submissives before. It's totally hot.
Well that's hella creepy.
Creepy? How dare you! We're CONSENSUAL. You obviously don't understand BDSM.
Actually, I think I do understand. You're not interested in helping me play around with this thing for my own sake, you're interested in making sure I'll have the sex you want to have with me later on.
That's crazy, we're all about consensuality here.
Then stop trying to make me feel like I'm not a "real" Submissive if I don't want to be raped.