Porn just got dirty…

50 Shades of Felt: Inside London's Pop-Up Material Sex Toy Shop

Digital Economy Bill set to go through?

In 2014, a long list of acts the UK government intended to ban was published. I wrote about this at the time it first emerged, and although some aspects have been amended, the principle remains that many of these consensual acts are being criminalised with implications likest to ripple way beyond our understanding. In other words if you think ‘oh but it’s only applicable to porn’ then think again…this kind of pernicious legislating tends to seep into other aspects of our sexual expression as we have learned in the past (think Spanner case)

This list has absolutely NO bearing whatsoever on anything that could be considered even remotely helpful, healthy or healing. In fact, the opposite would appear to be true in that upon closer scrutiny, it seems to serve to further marginalise people and groups already feeling the sting of this kind of irrational legislation or their place in the existing social pecking order, in particular women, the LGBT community and the fetish world.

Now, I’m an open minded sort of a woman – I’ve explored my sexuality in as many aspects as I can think of throughout my life, with some exceptions of course, I mean not everything is my ‘tasse du thé‘ after all. It would be fair to say however, that I felt that one of the safest places for exploration I’ve ever experienced was in fetish clubs where my boundaries were always well and truly navigated and respected, and the non consensual breaking of those boundaries is in fact seriously frowned upon within this community.  Diversity of sexual expression is also most welcome – leave your shame at the door please. Not every place or person respects this of course but nothing in life is really like that is it, and as far as it goes, these places always felt an extremely safe place to explore my personal pleasure, boundaries and erotic maps .

From my explorations of fetish and BDSM, I can also say that 1) I throughly enjoyed them, and 2) No children or animals were hurt in the process and 3) I was kinda proud of my flogger marks and pleasantly stinging buttocks! So what gives here? Surely this is quite an innocent sentiment below…

Haven’t us Brits always found the delicate ‘thwack’ of leather on willow a pleasure (cricket), or the whistle of air as crop hits thigh (equestrian pursuits) an unparalleled delight? Hasn’t the scrum down in rugby always resulted in more than ‘light’ bruising? But that’s ok because it’s sport? And what about boxing? Cage fighting? Wrestling? Judo? I could go on – all consenting sports that often require a willing acceptance of the risk of injury. Well aren’t we equally entitled to be the arbiters of that ‘calculated risk’ in our own sexual expression? It would seem not, for when we add sex into the equation, suddenly there’s a flurry of outrage and censorial judgment. If it’s about valour and the honour of your team or your country that’s ok, but if it’s about pleasure it’s not? This double standard has to stop and I don’t mean just in relation to sport but in relation to gender. The new law makes face sitting an illegal activity on the grounds that is “potentially life-endagering”! And female ejaculation? Please educate me as to how this can be deemed worthy of a total ban? How is this dangerous? Abusive? Oh hang on it’s not…it’s all about the continued repression of female sexual expression perhaps, so I think I must be doing something wrong here because I am genuinely perplexed!

Actually though, I don’t think it’s because we are getting anything wrong; I think what is at play has some strange undercurrent of a regressive and perhaps ulterior motive. Is this part of a strategy of some sort? These politicians aren’t stupid, so how can anyone with any intelligence whatsoever deem that it’s not okay to face sit, but it is ok to aggressively face f**k (where a man thrusts his wonderful pride with some degree of brute force into the open mouth of a woman). It’s okay for a man/group of men to ejaculate all over a woman but not okay for a woman to ejaculate over a man? It’s not okay for me to consent to you spanking me and leaving a mark or two but it is okay for a boxer to knock an opponent into unconsciousness? The way I see it is this, if I consent to you spanking me, well I’m an intelligent woman and if I want it I will have it, if I want to watch it, I want to watch it. The key words are here: ‘consenting‘, and ‘adult‘. I don’t need a nanny and I certainly don’t remember employing one. Funnily enough there’s a whole genre of porn based around adult babies, where one adult plays a nannying role over another, in that instance it’s clearly defined role play but with these state governed censorship laws it’s simply offensive, likely to encourage unhealthy desires from adults to children (how?) and is liable for a ban.

No, what’s at play here is far more sinister. When I was a student we saw the evolution of the “Off The Shelf” campaign to remove porn from all top shelf placement in shops. Now in our technological age it’s the ‘ban online porn’ movement, only there is no consistency, no equality, no logic or reason and plenty of hypocrisy. I don’t actually like a great deal of porn. I find it seriously lacking in imagination, tenderness, and eroticism and way too loaded in control, aggression and false representations of gender and intimacy. I prefer my sex connected, present and full of integrity. Whether a one off moment or a relationship, whether vanilla or wild and dirty, as long as it’s full of that connection, presence and honesty, and not riddled with guilt, deceit and shame, then I’m ok with the variations on the theme.

If you care about freedom of speech, and if you think that to educate your children, rather than conceal, ban or imagine rather foolishly that human beings aren’t naturally curious about sex, and from an early age too then please keep this dialogue open and let’s keep talking about sex on the menu.

My crop is simply buzzing for a bottom to whoop over this one and I bet I’d find that bottom in the corridors of Westminster in full enjoyment of a bit of illicit sexual frisson. As usual our sex has become a class, gender, and choice loaded gun being pointed in all the wrong directions. So I have only this to say….

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