Lucas Lascivious

Foe of moderation, champion of excess

Month: May, 2013

Why Rape Isn’t Funny

One would think the reasoning behind why rape isn’t a funny subject should be apparent, but given the current convergence of the Twitter hashtag #FBrape in response to Facebook’s lax filtering of pages and posts that treat physical and sexual assault against women as a joke, it’s clear that there are some out there who still distastefully think that this sort of violence against women is acceptable or that it’s somehow a comical subject.

I can take a joke as well as anyone, let’s be clear. The problem in this situation lies within the fact that per Facebook’s own user guidelines, which every single member of Facebook agrees to upon creating their account, “You will not post content that: is hate speech, threatening, or pornographic; incites violence; or contains nudity or graphic or gratuitous violence.” While, yes, people are certainly entitled to free speech elsewhere, Facebook has selectively stringent guidelines prohibiting posts that could encourage or abet violence, thus when you sign up and agree to the Terms of Service, you’re essentially giving up your right to free speech. I say “selectively stringent,” because this isn’t a new phenomenon or trend on Facebook; Gawker, for example, reported on these types of rape and assault-related posts a year ago.

In the past, Facebook has caused controversy by removing photos of women breastfeeding–an act allowed in public in 45 states, on any property owned by the federal government, and, in some cases, that can be grounds for a woman to sue for having her civil rights violated–as well as the photo below of a woman who had undergone reconstructive surgery for breast cancer:

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While these pictures do feature nudity, meaning they technically violate Facebook’s Terms of Service, the swiftness in which they were removed compared to the sluggish deletion of rape and assault-related content aimed at women, if erased whatsoever, is what’s startling. What’s more, when the pages and posts in question were reported to Facebook, all too often they were either found not to be offensive or were preliminarily removed before being reinstated shortly thereafter because, to quote Facebook directly, “…it doesn’t violate Facebook’s Community Standard on hate speech, which includes posts or photos that attack a person based on their race, ethnicity, national origing, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation, disability, or medical condition.”

The fact that such content exists at all is alarming. You have to wonder what in a person’s mind makes them think that taglines like, “Don’t wrap it and tap it, tape it and rape it” or, “Next time don’t get pregnant” with an image of a woman flailed about at the end of a staircase (because we all know it’s solely the woman’s fault when she gets pregnant) are even mildly humorous. It points to the larger issue of this almost cultural normalization of sexism and violence against women. The number of times I’ve seen someone roll their eyes at a “feminist”–people who are only seeking to end misogyny and sexism, and thus the type of violence these sorts of attitudes can lead to–is astounding. When someone says things like, “Rapists aren’t born, they’re made,” though, it takes it a step further, because it’s in essence blaming women for the unprompted violence that is being enacted against them. Somehow, as mind-boggling as it is, this remains far too prevalent a mentality in this day and age in what are supposed to be considered advanced societies (this Buzzfeed post filled with tweets from people, both male and female, blaming the victim in the Steubenville gangrape case or the story of Rehtaeh Parsons are both disgusting examples of that).

As the hashtag gained popularity and people starting contacting Facebook sponsors about pulling their ads, Facebook issued a response:

In recent days, it has become clear that our systems to identify and remove hate speech have failed to work as effectively as we would like, particularly around issues of gender-based hate. In some cases, content is not being removed as quickly as we want. In other cases, content that should be removed has not been or has been evaluated using outdated criteria. We have been working over the past several months to improve our systems to respond to reports of violations, but the guidelines used by these systems have failed to capture all the content that violates our standards. We need to do better – and we will.

While it’s a small step forward, it doesn’t distract from the fact that we as a society have a obligation to change. Rape culture is a very real issue and making light of it only seeks to pose an even more substantial threat to the female population as a whole. I often preach against superficial ideas as to what makes a “real man,” but in this case, I can definitively say that what makes a real man is treating women with parity and respect.

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The Ignorance Behind the Notion of “Manly” Gays

Gay men find themselves faced with a variety of colorful defenses and slurs from homophobes and anti-gay advocates to express and mask their ignorance on a near-daily basis. At some point most learn to look past a majority of the bigotry out of acclimation, which in itself is a pretty sad reality. One thing, however, that should never be overlooked or accepted is when gays try to excuse the philistinism of others by claiming that gays somehow bring homophobia on themselves for acting “too gay.”

There are so many facets of that argument that are so incomprehensibly glib that even finding a place to start is difficult.

When it’s said that someone is acting “too gay,” the insinuation is that effeminate gays and men in general are fated to act “manly” at all times, which is in turn highlighting the fact that society’s antiquated gender roles that say all men should be outwardly macho are being readily and unquestionably accepted, thus projecting a virile and simplistic image of what a “real” man should be onto all males. Therefore, those who don’t fit into those inane roles are somehow deemed to be less of a man.

Blaming a gay person for the nescience of others because they don’t necessarily fit a stereotypical societal gender role is along the same lines as blaming a woman for getting raped because she was deemed to have been dressed too provocatively. The criticism shouldn’t be directed at the person being attacked, it should be cast upon how we as a society think. In the same way that a man’s feminine traits or a woman’s masculine traits shouldn’t warrant censure, particularly not from within the gay community itself, the act of rape shouldn’t be considered the fault of the victim either.

Yes, there are obviously gay men who are more generically masculine than others, but it doesn’t somehow reduce those who are more flamboyant to a lower mark in some sort of unspoken manhood caste system. If you have a penis, you are biologically a man: it’s a pretty cut-and-dry philosophy. The espousal of sciolistic notions not only damages the plight of the gay community as a whole, but these idiotic interpretations of gender being perpetuated also wholly impair overall societal intellect. When someone is thrusting society’s doltish anti-gay sentiments upon the shoulders of gay people who are just being themselves, it realistically not only highlights that individual’s personal obtuseness, but subsequently aligns them with a much larger group of dimwits.

How about instead of being divisive, we just let people be? A glitter-doused twink dancing in a Pride parade isn’t any less of a man than a burly daddy kicking back with a few beers to watch Sunday Night Football. Either way, non-conformity is a much better option than being a simpleton.

Why Marriage Equality is Societally Relevant (to Everyone)

The boast for marriage equality is at an all-time high nationally, with 53 percent of the population–a majority–in favor of it. It seems like an amazing feat and a win for equality lobbyists who, for decades, have been pushing to be legislatively recognized as equals. While their efforts should not be undermined whatsoever, not to mention the fact the majority is on our side, the fact still remains: there’s another 47 percent of the population that sees us as sub-par human beings. Read that line again and focus on the last two words: “human beings.”

We, as humans, are all composed of the same matter (that is, stardust, essentially). Outside of the fact that we’re all a part of the same universe that surrounds us, we’re a part of humanity, which, in turn, should warrant humaneness. It seems, though, that as support for treating people humanely and as equals rises, discriminatory rhetoric intensifies. It’s a trend that’s been seen repetitively throughout world history (yes, shockingly, there is a world outside of yourself), but it’s sad that in an age in which we consider ourselves an “advanced” and “progressive” species that we haven’t educated ourselves enough to realize that not everyone is going to be like you, and that that’s okay.

Every civil rights movement that’s come about in American history has been the result of a group of minorities banding together to proclaim that they are not the lesser-than and that they deserve to be treated as equals. I don’t even like using the term “minority,” because it insinuates that somehow another set of human beings in less-than. Just as African-Americans are not all cheap slave labor and women are not all child-bearing homemakers, gays are not all prancing fairies on roller skates doused in glitter and wrapped in a feather boa, despite what you may see during Pride celebrations (who doesn’t love glitter and roller skates, really?). Just like you, we’re human beings, and all that we’re asking is to be recognized as such.

That’s the reason marriage equality extends beyond the LGBT community. When you, as a human being, are willing to sit by and contently watch another person’s civil rights, albeit millions of people, be refused to them, you’re unknowingly a part of the problem; indifference to the situation is almost as insulting and detrimental as being blatantly anti-gay.

If you’re of the opinion that your religious teachings somehow deem homosexuality or any sexual orientation other than your own as ungodly… at this point, there’s nothing I can say to change your mind, because your mind is clearly as antiquated as the religious teachings themselves. What I will say is that no form of God has been quoted as demeaning homosexuality. We’ll save the illegitimacy of religious texts for another time.

Aside from religious beliefs, though, what other opposition is there to marriage equality? Any and all points that have been raised have been summarily diminished, not to mention the fact that, statistically-speaking, gay couples are by and large more prosperous personally and professionally than their straight counterparts.

I’m not saying you have to turn up in gold hot pants void of a shirt to a Pride parade, but your support nonetheless does not go unnoticed.

The Six Types of Guys I’ve Dated

The First
I think most people would agree that your first love will always be special. It’s the first time you experienced the brilliance of love and everything that it entails: passion, distress, completeness, etc., but overall, just love and all that it encompasses. It’s what you strive to find in life, so actually experiencing a deep, impassioned love is almost a privilege. I’ve consistently tried to recreate the feeling, but it’s never worked out. Speaking of which…

The Rebound
After “The First” inevitably comes the rebound. While the rebound was so incredibly cute and had a bigger cock, a good pounding couldn’t cure the damage left by the first, but at least we had a lot of good times in retrospect.

The Twink
As a self-esteem boost, I dated a twink (as I was fucking four other twinks). It lasted a week, which speaks volumes in terms of the seriousness of it. I never considered it a serious relationship, and actually forgot about it until he brought it up a year later, to which my response was a head nod and, “…okay.”

The Sugar Daddy
After the aforementioned dating experiments, I figured it was time to fulfill my interest in dating a sugar daddy (read: someone with lots of cash on hand). It was nice for maybe six months, but eventually I realized that money equals power and that, instead of being equals, I was becoming dependent on said sugar daddy, which didn’t bode well with me. Thus, I broke up with him.

The Control Freak
Even after dating “The Sugar Daddy,” as a submissive person, I relinquished myself to a guy who made a decent salary, but was insanely possessive. Obviously this didn’t sit well with me.

The “Ethnic” Guy
I eventually got so tired of hearing people saying I’m a racist because I don’t date black guys that I finally dated one. My issue has never been with race, I just don’t like ghetto people in general, which spans all races. So, finally, I dated a black guy to prove a point. That lasted for about three months before we both got bored with each other and parted ways, though we still remain fuck buddies. Since then, I’ve dated a Spaniard and two mixed (African-American and Caucasian) guys.

Thomas Blachman: A Direct Threat to Danish Feminism

For those unfamiliar with him, Thomas Blachman is described professionally as a “jazz musician, composer, and five-time Danish Music Awards winner” who is also currently a judge on the Danish version of The X-Factor. In his native Denmark, he’s kind of known for being a blowhard–imagine Simon Cowell, but 10 times the douchiness.

With that being said, somehow Blachman managed to supersede his own reputation as a shitty human being by narcissistically creating a show titled Blachman, in which the entire premise is that Blachman and another equally as grossly unattractive male are to judge females based solely on physical appearance.

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(Blachman, right)

My immediate thought was that I feel sorry for any girl who would actually subject themselves to this sort of criticism for a glimmer of television fame without processing the misogyny behind it all. Per Blachman’s own words, the show is designed to “revise women’s view of men’s view of women.” So now the insinuation is that women subjecting themselves to the judgment of men, period–not to mention the fact they’re choosing to adhere to misogynistic beauty standards set by men for women–is considered revisionary? I don’t think so, especially considering this is a word-for-word inquiry he proposed to one of the females: “Now, I’ve always been an ass man. Would you mind turning around for a moment? Very animated nipples.  How does that pussy work for you?”

Blachman is part of the problem that’s still almost entirely a global epidemic: women aren’t being treated as human beings or equals in comparison to their male counterparts. My response is: let’s see your dick, you low-life misanthrope.

Just by being male, you think your sexual anatomy is superior a woman’s, when in reality, it’s your lack of sexual anatomy that makes you feel as though you need to demean women in the way that you are by telling them to strip off their clothing so you can ignorantly demean them in order to make up for your own sexual shortcomings, you platitudinal piece of trash.

What’s worse, an American version is actually being considered. Fortunately, the understandable outrage among the Danish makes it unlikely it’ll ever hit the States (and even if it did, it’d be censored, so what’s the point?). I’m not a proponent of the idea of Hell, but if there is a Hell, it’s certain you’ll find Thomas Blachman there.

The World According to Mike Jeffries

It’s no secret that over the years Abercrombie & Fitch and its CEO Mike Jeffries have been hit with an onslaught of criticism for not only their self-admitted “exclusionary” clientele practices and employee policies, but also for managing to offend everyone from Asians to Muslims to sick children to womens’ rights groups with their products and business model. Now, because of a new book, The New Rules of Retail by Robin Lewis, the company and Jeffries are once again finding themselves drawing heat.

In an interview promoting his book with Business Insider, Lewis made the assertion that  Jeffries “doesn’t want his core customers to see people who aren’t as hot as them wearing his clothing. People who wear his clothing should feel like they’re one of the ‘cool kids.'” This isn’t at all off-base, given that in the past Jeffries has been blatant in his desire for alienation among the store’s core and the general population, saying, “Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong” and, “Abercrombie is only interested in people with washboard stomachs who look like they’re about to jump on a surfboard.”

Frankly, I’m not particularly concerned with those statements, as they were obviously made to draw attention to a company whose stock prices, sales figures, and popularity has been lagging for practically a decade now. The sheer delusion is what’s annoying.

Mind you, these statements are coming from an adult male in his 60s (he’s presently 68), not to mention the fact he looks like this:

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Though some clearly still adhere to this sort of social caste system based on generic “attractiveness” and financial wealth, a majority of us learn that actually making statements like Jeffries’ isn’t socially acceptable outside of high school or our freshman year of college at the latest, which ironically is also when most people become coherent to the fact that the Abercombie & Fitch brand is nothing more than cheaply made clothing being sold at an astronomical markup to people who still immaturely share in Jeffries’ imbecilic principles.

Abercrombie & Fitch used to be seen as a sort of dream company and lifestyle brand in the late 90s and early 2000s, experiencing enormous growth and drawing in hoards of investors. However, the conspicuous consumption that was popularized in those years has since fallen out of favor, leaving Abercrombie & Fitch still sticking to their outdated practices. This is a large part of Abercrombie & Fitch’s mélange: their delusions of grandeur and former successes have beguiled them into believing they’re the same brand they once were when that’s not at all the case. Their practice of refusing to sell above a certain size (they don’t sell above a size 10 or XL and XXL products to women) or weeding out customers deemed unworthy of wearing their clothing isn’t a new one among high-fashion brands, of which Abercrombie & Fitch is clearly not. They have average customers of average means who are usually of average size—a size 14. By comparison, rivals H&M and American Eagle sell up to size 16 and 18, respectively.

Notwithstanding, Abercrombie & Fitch are certainly free to continue with their antiquated model, and Mike Jeffries can continue to sit back and lavish in his enormous CEO compensation packages while paying paltry wages to the company’s retail employees, but the rest of us have moved on.

Homeosexual behavior is up to three times more dangerous than smoking.

That is, if you are to believe what Janet Porter of Faith2Action (F2A) has to say.

Janet Porter and F2A recently posted the above video on YouTube–the original of which has since been removed due to YouTube’s policy of prohibiting “hate speech”–that firstly compares homosexuality to smoking before Gary Glenn of the American Family Association gives a misinformed litany about the mortality rates of gays and lesbians due primarily to HIV/AIDS.

Honestly, there are so many things that are not only asinine, but factually incorrect about this video that I don’t know where to begin. Let’s take it from the top.

• Janet is clearly a sinner herself based purely on mien.

“Be not among drunkards or among gluttonous eaters of meat, for the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, and slumber will clothe them with rags.”
– Proverbs 23:20-21

By that notion, I, the drunkard, and she, the food glutton, are equally as sinful in the eyes of God.

• The “book” she introduces, Heather Has 2 Cigarettes, is clearly a reference to Heather Has Two Mommies, a book written by Lesléa Newman and published in1989 that deals with teaching children about the realism that same-sex couples do exist and have families of their own. A shocking revelation, I know. She even goes so far as to rewrite the acronym GLSEN (Gay and Lesbian Straight Education Network) to mean Glad Little Smokers Enlist Now. Not only does that demean the progressive and impassioned work of the Gay and Lesbian Straight Education Network, as well as figuratively insinuate that people can actually be “recruited” into homosexuality, but it also goes to further liken smoking and homosexuality.

The preposterousness in trying to correlate the two should go without saying: cigarettes are sticks of poison entombed within—in most cases—a casing of cellulose acetate, while being gay is, by all credible scientific accounts, an inherent trait. They could not be more disparate.

• She then proceeds to hand out packs of cigarettes to the children, the allegory of which I’m uncertain of. In its most perverse state, it suggests gays are passing out their dicks to small children. In its most platonic sense, it’s nonsensical.

• “Now what do you wanna be when you grow up?” “Smokers!” Again with the inane parables. Are we now hinting that just knowing a homosexual will make you want to grow up to be one? Because, you know, growing up to be a homosexual is so easy, only made better by people like Janet Porter and F2A’s bigotry. Who wouldn’t want to be constantly tormented as a youth for being themselves, being viewed as different, and/or refusing to accept a societal gender role? Sounds like heaven!

• “Actually, I’m a non-smoker.” In this instance, the poor, indoctrinated child delivering the line is supposed to be the non-smoker, alluding to being the straight outcast in a group of gays. Besides the fact this entire point lacks any sort of analytical thought, the irony is that by teaching children to be discriminatory against others, you’re espousing the same belief you’re trying to defeat.

• “My mom told me smoking is bad for you.” “That’s hate speech!” The effects of smoking are well-documented over many decades; that smoking is bad for you is a well-known fact. However, being attracted to the same sex is not, never has been, and never will be a detriment.

• On that note, Gary Glenn goes on to say that, based on outdated research by the Journal of Epidemiology from the late 80s, homosexuals should be treated like smokers, in that smokers are given designated spaces where they can and cannot smoke. Last time I checked, ‘gay’ does not affect anyone other than the individual who identifies as LGBTQ. Read that again, Gary Glenn: being gay does not affect anyone else. The reason smokers have designated areas is because secondhand smoke is more harmful to outsiders inhaling the smoke than the people smoking. You also demean the government for saying that tax dollars shouldn’t be spent in an effort to get people to stop smoking, suggesting you believe people should have free will to do what they’d like, even if it negatively affects the population and individual as whole, yet homosexuality has never negatively impacted anyone who isn’t a homosexual. Hypocrisy much? Speaking of which, the Journal of Epidemiology has since revised their initial and antiquated research to reflect the fact that not only do same-sex couples who are married have lower mortality rates, but that married straight couples actually have higher mortality rates.

• “Homosexual activists are inconsistent on [whether or not being gay is a birthright]. Sometimes they claim that people involved in that lifestyle were ‘born that way’, even though there’s not a shred of scientific evidence to document that claim.” At this point in this video, I nearly fell to the floor, wondering what world Gary Glenn and people like him are living in. Those of us in the coherent world that involves science and logic know that scientific evidence overwhelmingly points to that fact that homosexuality is actually not a choice. Then again, who needs the American Medical Association, American Psychological Association, American Psychiatric Association, etc., or even–Heaven forbid–science when you have Jesus?

• “On the other hand, they’ll say so-called ‘sexual orientation’ is fluid, that it can change on a spectrum throughout somebody’s life.” A person’s sexual orientation isn’t “so-called.” That would mean you’re a “so-called” heterosexual.

• The article entitled “Middle school girls forced to ask for lesbian kiss in anti-bullying presentation” featured in the video has been debunked (www.huffingtonpost.com/alvin-mcewen/fox-news-forced-lesbian-kiss-middle-school-workshop_b_3187926.html). It didn’t stop the school or school district from getting hundreds upon thousands of volumes of hate mail and emails, based on one “journalist’s” biased misinformation. Now who are the hate-filled ones?

• “True Christian compassion is trying to help people out of self-destructive lifestyles.” I’d venture to say the “Christian” lifestyle you all are describing is a hell of a lot more noxious than any self-destructiveness on the gay side of things could ever entail.

These are the same people who have absolutely no compassion when gays and lesbians harm themselves, who concurrently blame it on a lack of religion instillation. The fact of the matter is, this sort of rhetoric is what drives those people you like to victimize to such drastic measures. Take some responsibility.

To any straight person who thinks that we’re somehow trying to indoctrinate them with our “lifestyles,” imagine having to put up with this sort of jejune, misinformed bullshit every single day of our lives. Is it so hard to understand why a fellow human being would request to be treated equally? And even as I use the word “request,” it makes me cringe. No human should have to ask permission to be seen as your equal.