Just another college girl fightin' the patriarchy

As I walk down the street a lingerie store is plastered with pictures of airbrushed women staring seductively at the camera. A popular clothing store for teens features thin girls modeling thongs, bikinis, and leggings while doing “porn star” poses and faces. A store specializing in little girls’ clothes features young girls jutting our their hips, pouting at the camera, and shoving their butts in the air. When I go to buy some gum at the store I see rows of women in lingerie, in bikinis, and nude with strategically placed captions staring back at me, promising the youngest and hottest at my disposal. In the women’s section I see scantily clad women looking seductively at the camera with captions promising to teach me how to behave like a porn star, how to pleasure my boyfriend, how to maximize my cleavage, how to diet to a size 2. There are ads on the wall for cigarettes, beer, soda, and potato chips with scantily clad women sucking the cigarettes, licking the beer, and caressing the junk food. In the backs of magazines are advertisements for live sex toys in the form of women. As I drive home I pass billboards filled with hot women promising to gyrate and pour water on themselves for my viewing pleasure. It’s insinuated that I can rent one of these women like a car.

When I get home and check my email my inbox is filled with ads for videos of brutal rape, women gagging on penises, and women being gang banged. I browse through blogs and accidentally click a wrong link, which floods my screen with graphic hardcore porn ads filled with animations of men ejaculating on women’s faces, women being anally penetrated, and of women with tears streaming down their faces while they are raped. I type in a search and many of the pages are filled with porn. I flip on the TV and see ads for completely non-sexual products such as deodorant featuring a porn-ready woman in a white t-shirt shaking her breasts while covered in water. When I look through cable channels I have to skip through several dozen porn channels to find a “regular” movie.

I go to a party with friends and they want to look through porn for entertainment. I start seeing a new boyfriend who requests to degrade and dominate me like he’s seen in porn. He is repulsed by body hair and thinks body fat is unnatural. He enjoys the thought of me being uncomfortable or in pain to satisfy his urges. A friend goes to a party and is raped according to a porn script the boys just watched.

If I have a child he or she won’t have to look for it, it will find him or her. I will have to put enormous effort into porn-proofing my home and even then he will almost surely see it on someone else’s computer, on his phone, hear about it from friends. I will have to arm him before he’s even hit puberty to know that what he sees on the computer isn’t real. I will have to live knowing that my child has seen a woman being double penetrated and ejaculated on before he’s had his first kiss and there’s nothing I can do about it.

Even if I somehow manage to avoid ever seeing porn, it is expected that I dress like a porn star, wax like a porn star, perform in bed like a porn star, and fully embrace all of my partner’s porn-fueled fantasies. I am told that if I don’t perform to his demands I will be cheated on, dumped, abused, and it will all be my fault. I am told that if I refuse to date men who who use porn I will be alone or at best am a controlling bitch and will probably be lied to anyways.

So really, I would love to follow the advice that if I don’t like porn I shouldn’t watch it. I would love to live in a world where absolutely everything from children’s shows to pharmaceutical ads wasn’t influenced by porn. I would love to live in a world where most of the men I meet don’t think of me in reference to the last porn movie they just watched. The advice seems to easy, just don’t watch. I would love to avoid it. Just tell me how.

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Comments on: "If you don’t like it, don’t watch it." (13)

  1. Miranda said:

    Oy, that’s depressing. This porn culture, we are drowning in it. Porn is a tribute to men’s power over women. Men use it to feed their egos and bond with other men while women are men’s conquests, trophies, prey. How are women supposed to have equal status with men under these conditions? It’s impossible. That’s the problem, not “Oh noes, I’m offended by dirty pictures!”

  2. Thank you. This is well said.

  3. I just found your blog, and I’m so glad I have!

    I recall discussing porn with another womon at my college, and she said, “if you don’t like it, don’t look.” Your post explains how utterly impossible this is. Not only that, it’s so fucking individualistic; not surprising, considering every lesson we learn in this society is based on how important it is to be an individual.

    I look forward to reading more of your blog posts!

  4. It’s true: we cannot “not look.” The rights of people who choose NOT to view porn are daily and consistently ignored by the billion-upon-billion-dollar porn industry. “Just don’t look” is disengenuous and smug at best.

  5. […] that porn consumers will be more likely to purchase X-rated materials via mobile technology. Thus, when anti-porn feminists say there’s no escaping pornography, there really is no escaping […]

  6. […] “If you don’t like it, don’t watch it.” “Even if I somehow manage to avoid ever seeing porn, it is expected that I dress like a porn star, wax like a porn star, perform in bed like a porn star, and fully embrace all of my partner’s porn-fueled fantasies. I am told that if I don’t perform to his demands I will be cheated on, dumped, abused, and it will all be my fault. I am told that if I refuse to date men who who use porn I will be alone or at best am a controlling bitch and will probably be lied to anyways.” […]

  7. I don’t mean to anger and I am not trying to personally attack you but I have to state that you are either living in a weird part of the world or I live in a different world than you do… I agree that there is an overly sexual ad world out there of both scantily clad women and half naked buff men being used to sell things… For example the Lotto649 Commercial in Canada of the 5 topless greased up men making their chest dance to violin music to sell lotto tickets!!!… Which is not different than using a females sexuality to sell something. But I have NEVER seen some of the things you claim to have seen… for example I have never seen “little girls’”… “shoving their butts in the air.” I have never gone to a store to “buy some gum and see rows of women in lingerie, in bikinis, and nude with strategically placed captions staring back at me”. WHERE ARE YOU SHOPPING!?

    I agree though that it’s sad that you can rent some women like a car because money means more to these people than morals. But that should be something to hate those females for being as opposed to the ad companies for utilizing.

    Also I’m very curious how and where you get the kind of ridiculous spam you seem to receive. I get lots of junk email but NEVER have I seen “email involving brutal rape, women gagging on penises, and women being gang banged.” These are things you’d have to sign up to receive because the spam I get in my email is all about Discount Rolex’s, Viagra, Enlarging my penis, being a better lover… which minus the watches are all based on male society forced concepts.

    Unless I have gone to a specific blog looking for porn, I have NEVER “accidentally click a wrong link, which floods my screen with graphic hardcore porn ads filled with animations of men ejaculating on women’s faces, women being anally penetrated” and I certainly have NEVER seen ads of “women with tears streaming down their faces while they are raped.”
    I know this shit exists, but it is definitely not as in your face as you make it out to be. I visit porn sites and unless you specifically look for those types of things, most standard porn and advertising for porn is based on 25 year old women pretending to be young teens.

    When I look through cable channels I NEVER have to skip through several dozen porn channels to find a “regular” movie because I don’t subscribe to those channels.

    My next question is what kind of friends are you keeping company with? My friends have NEVER suggested looking though porn for entertainment, it is a in private alone thing, I know my friends like porn but we have some shame and morals to at least not make it a group activity. Also you might want to check the type of males you are interested in dating because if you start “dating someone who wants to degrade and dominate you like he’s seen in porn.” you must be going after the stereotypical meat-head musclebound type of males who are filled with testosterone and are into sex for themselves… us average guys are more sensible when it comes to our partners. I do NOT enjoy the thought of my girlfriend being uncomfortable or in pain to satisfy my urges, if a male has to do that it’s because he isn’t good enough at knowing how to pleasure a female so he uses pain as a means of getting a reaction.

    “I will have to put enormous effort into porn-proofing my home”
    I TOTALLY AGREE with this statement because you seem to have an overtly over sexual house. My kids watch Disney channel, NickTV, Treehouse TV and Family Channel. These channels have either NO ad’s or only have ad’s for kid related things. I don’t subscribe to adult sex channels, I have a parental control on my kids computer. My kids are protected but it’s not something I have to “put enormous effort into”.

    I feel that if any “child has seen a woman being double penetrated and ejaculated on before he’s had his first kiss” they have probably also seen the side of porn where men are being degraded in sites like “DancingBear” or “CFNM”, because again it’s what you search for it isn’t as overt as you make it out to be. If my kid goes to Google images and typed “tits” for example… (Do it with the safe filter off) I see a page filled with breasts… There is 1 image with cum in it… ONE! But if my kid typed gangbang… then OF COURSE they are going to see gangbangs. No more than finding a magazine 20 years ago under a friend’s dads mattress. You search and of course you will find.

    And again if “it is expected that I dress like a porn star, wax like a porn star, perform in bed like a porn star, and fully embrace all of my partner’s porn-fueled fantasies”. You are with the wrong person and it is YOUR choice to be in that relationship no more than it would be for any male to HAVE to change who he is to suit you and your ideals. A lot guys I know go from hanging out with our buddies and being able to sit on their ass on any given day doing nothing, to never seeing their buddies and never being able to have any personal time for themselves. It’s joked about on tv that men are turned into yes men, and that they have to beg for their partners to be sexual with them because once they are in the relationship it becomes a slave master thing where women use sex to control their partner… THIS IS A TV STANDARD. But it appears to be an OK and excepted standard. Why is this OK?

    My wife doesn’t like porn and chooses not to watch it. She never see’s it either. Our children’s shows aren’t influenced by porn. The men I know don’t think of women in reference to the last porn movie they just watched. We are intelligent enough to separate ENTERTAINMENT and LIFE. We know that manufactured porn is not REAL and amateur stuff is nothing like you have claimed.

    If you want to know how to avoid it… I can tell you simply to stop searching it out because except for the provocative advertising which objectify both men and women, anything else you have stated would certainly have to be seeked out or is fabricated for impact.

    • Miranda said:

      I live in a different world than you do

      Actually we live in the same world. It’s a world where men are privileged over women, which means that you see the world through the lens of privilege, blissfully unaware of the oppression of the women around you. In other words, just because you do not see oppression does not mean that it is not there, but thanks for trying to invalidate the experiences of women.

      Oh, and enjoy your porn, which I’m sure is totally the fault of loose women and has absolutely nothing to do with men getting a thrill out of violating the privacy of women and having the social, economic and political power to enforce their desires. Pfft!

  8. NinjaGeek said:

    To add to my above comment… For those commenters who do the following. WomEn is spelled with and E, spelling it with an O or a Y (womon or womyn) is not gaining power. It is giving the impression of the typical man hating type of feminist and in regards to trying to come across with some seriousness to anyone other than those other men hating feminists, you instantly lose any and all strength in your argument by doing this. Those who use the o-y anti-male spellings are doing to males what they constantly accuse males of doing to women.

    Also, there seems to be a lot of assumption in regards to men and porn. Porn viewing is not about domination in any aspect. There may be some men out there with weird fetishes who do but I can tell you personally from a male perspective. Porn is not about domination, disrespect or some sick twisted ideal you seem to fabricate. How do you straight, non-male hating feminists think sexual relations between you and a partner should go? How do you go about attracting a partner? I’m curious. Do you use your sexuality to attract a male? Do you have sexual fantasies or sexual kinks you like them to do in the bedroom? How can you do any of these things without contradicting your arguments.

    • NinjaGeek: Honestly, You don’t seem to have the least bit of self-insight. Try really heard sometime to listen to yourself just talk. Look at your arguments and the arguments posed and ask yourself if you are even talking about in the same conversation. It is apparent that what you are blaming feminist for doing to you is what you are you are really actually doing do to feminist.

      1)You’ve chosen, long before you came to this sight, that you knew all you needed to know about radical feminism. Whether you are right or wrong doesn’t see to matter to you. You just know there is a certain way the world operates. You’ve chosen, long before you came to this sight, that you knew all you needed to know about radical feminism. Perhaps, though, you should challenge those notions flitting about in your head.

      You see, you have brought obvious assumptions about the goal of feminists. You undoubtedly have vague notions and vile images that are conjured up when the word, “Feminist,” is brought up. You must also believe (while thinking you are completely rational and logical) that spelling womyn with a ‘Y’ or ‘O’ is further proof that the people with whom you are addressing are all those vile man-hating creatures you imagine them to be

      I find it funny that the spelling irritates you and you even hinted at being offensive because of dropping “man/men” thing…but porn is perfectly acceptable and anyone who argues that is a prude. Whether you’ve even ever considered it or not, but feminist philosophy, trying to answer exiltionalistic questions, the culture of gender, sexual ontology, sociology, concepts of power and inequality, etc.. are not easy concepts to understand. They actually take years of effort to truly begin to grasp and wrap your head around them enough to understand just some of the complexities on what self is and what it means for the self to experience the intersectionalities of power and privilege.

      I personally find it insulting (but admittedly somewhat amusing too) that you have the audacity to just waltz right in here with nothing but unexamined cultural cliches of radical feminism and think you have anything remotely insightful to offer. This is an example of arrogance and privilege. Of which you do not understand nor appreciate just how your ignorance contributes to the suffering of others.

      2) No one here wants to see men treated the way women are treated in porn. The fact you keep bringing up men in porn being dominated by women is a clue into how you think feminists view men and/or that a tiny opposite (but certainly not equal) reaction toward men in porn means we are all equal now. Or possibiliy you think that radical feminists want to see men being treated and depicted like women are. Whether you want to believe it or not, the last thing I want to see is another flesh and blood human-being being dehumanized, tortured, slaughters, and treated like worthless meat.

      Your whole argument on feminist’s argument is literally, “What is good for the goose is good for the gander.” No! What is experienced as good for the goose is NOT good for the gander here. Feminists aren’t trying to assert some kind of power over men. Perhaps your automatic suspicion and reason you believe that is because that’s the rules of the game by which men play by and are use to (i.e.,power over tactics). Not that you have asked (but perhaps should if you are going to come into our spaces), but the goal in feminism is for both men and women to evolve beyond these patriarchal power structures to experience mutuality–to know a whole half of our fellow human beings on equal footing–to truly stand in solidarity with each other. How can this possibly happen in this culture? After all, women have tried being the good housewife and currently women in porn are serving as men’s slaves, and still you are not happy. And besides, doesn’t a whole sex believing they are owed something in these fashions by women to receive your decency a bit cruel and narcissistic of men to expect?

      3) Masculinity is in a peculiar place these days. The Women’s movement has raised consciousness, and ideas of femininity are constantly evolving. Yet, men have done little to change their notions of masculinity nor what it takes to acheive it. The means by which they go about it may have been redirected or compensated for in other areas, but the forumula is the same. However, some men are evolving because they have realized that these concepts of masculinity are not truly serving them well by means of truly being able to provide them with a satisfying life. These men are also called feminists.

      4) Finally, it is really frustrating, hurtful, irritating, and downright rude to have to hear these arguments over and over. Perhaps, just maybe, you don’t know what feminism actually is. And if that is true, perhaps you don’t understand the purpose of a different spelling of the word to, “Womyn,” is all about. It maybe nice from time to time of you to actually try to understand the meaning behind things like that before just being an asshole toward’s another, fellow, human-being about it. Perhaps if you really don’t know something you could ask.

  9. …I really apologize for the typos. I posted my comment in the wee morning hours and did not proof read it thoroughly enough. Obviously. It should be site, not sight… Also, the fourth paragraph was written very poor. If I may let me reword it here:

    The spelling, ‘Womyn,’ apparently irritates you. I find it particularly funny that you have advised someone not to be offensive to men in this way because it gives the impression of being one of those anti-man feminists–alluding that by dropping the suffix, ‘men’ is a power play by personally attacking you, as a man. It’s rather ironic that certain spellings offend you but porn is perfectly acceptable and, apparently, shouldn’t lead any woman to conclude that porn’s depictions are evidence women-hating on behalf of men. It’s even more ironic that you take any criticism of porn as evidence of male-hating and are offended. Why does one’s attempt at gender neutrality and ending what they see as flagrant and ubiquitous degradation bother you? Whatever the case, you are no doubt oblivious of your own privilege and what you truly think and expect of women.

    Have you ever even considered that you are are making incredibly inaccurate assumptions? The areas of feminist thought and philosophy you are attacking– existentialism, culture, gender, sexual ontology, sociology, and lastly (but not least) concepts of intersectionality of power, privilege, and inequality–are not concepts that are easily understood. I can’t fathom how you could ever agree or disagree with any feministic conclusions and/or efforts without some minimal knowledge of the aforementioned topics…much less argue them.

    • NinjaGeek said:

      So to start… I am not on here “MRA Trolling”, I understand (as much as you may disagree) with the concept of wanting equal rights and that feminist feel they are trying to achieve what they say that they are.
      I understand that spelling women with a Y is a sense of community for feminist and allow them to feel like they are removing the patriarchal oppression from their world.
      I was simply pointing out that from an outside (and yes male) perspective, it comes across as a man hating power V feminist. Mind you, This may be a socially driven ideal but none the less it is the image that comes across.

      I never came to this site thinking I knew everything about radical feminist, I indeed do not, I know only what I have witnessed in dealing with or talking with them, I have asked questions (actually my last sentence of my post was a question.) and have tried to have conversations with radfems. Regardless of my reasoning, my attempt at understanding, and/or my method of questioning, I am only ever met with instant defense/attack mode (which I am sure is an acquired mechanism created through dealing with resistance) but exactly like a hardcore christian, I find that if I ask questions, make statements, or point out flaws in the belief system of the other party, I don’t get a back and forth conversation of open ideas (example. Why do you think this? Well this is why. OK but have you considered this? Oh no I haven’t but have you considered this.) That kind of back and forth is not what I have discovered these groups and groups like the feminist movement to be about. I have discovered in MY experience ONLY that opposing views are not welcome AT ALL, even if logical. The conversations are geared as a listen to our plight and either join us or die.

      I would think that having an outside and counter viewpoint would be a welcome one, since it would allow you to see how things look from that perspective (as opposed to assuming what it looks like.)

      I believe (and of course this is through “privileged” eyes) that men and women are more equal than feminist think they are, and that if a group decides they need more, have less, are wronged, etc… they can always find something to make their argument look good as long as no one looks at the opposing view points. As a feminist you see that you are oppressed because for years women were treated like shit. This has changed drastically over the years and the “patriarchy” has been diminished quite substantially since the bra burning days, but the momentum those movements created have rippled onward to today as groups keep trying to find more to *cough* “complain” about.

      As a feminist (I assume) you feel oppression appears in the form of media driven sex (which happens to both men and women equally), oppression appears in the form of equal pay (Which IS equal depending on the statistics you use/site/look for. Women are paid more than men as teachers, nurses, child care workers… anything that has nurturing characteristics, men are paid more in jobs which require more brutish characteristics, like police, construction, or firefighter. Not saying women can’t do the job, but statistically men die on these jobs 80% more often than women and on the flip side women are generally more nurturing than males. That’s not a gender bias, that’s a studied and documented difference between us which no amount of “equality” can change that.) http://www.dol.gov/_sec/media/reports/femalelaborforce/

      But if you only look at the wide range statistic of ALL jobs in all the world as a whole and weigh the gender pay scale… of course it looks skewed. There are more men working so therefore the percentage is higher. You need to look at the broken down pieces to see that it’s all dependent on the statistical margin you choose that makes the numbers either better or worse.

      SO, as a male we get some things and lose out on others, as do females. YES there are some places where these margins need to be bridged more but over all, the only reason a majority of issues still arise in our society is because groups seek them out. Be it religion, gender, race, etc… (I know that this whole post will be picked apart and misconstrued as some privileged misogynistic bullshit, I can assure you I expect it since I live in a society where as a white straight male I have no voice… for everything I say, do, and think makes me a “raciest, misogynist, homophobe” the list goes on. But I am not any of those.) I just have a different perspective than you and that being said both sides should communicate as opposed to assuming the other is trying to destroy it with everything is says and does. ANYTHING can be twisted, contextualized, and misconstrued to be taken in whichever way suits the receiving parties argument.
      ________________________

      I’d like to clear up some of your comments.
      Your quote…
      “After all, women have tried being the good housewife and currently women in porn are serving as men’s slaves, and still you are not happy.”
      I don’t know where you get that I am (men are) not happy with women. I AM happy. Women (feminist are the ones complaining) I don’t complain if my wife decides to stay home, or decides to work, I’ve never seen it as something for me to decide (This isn’t the 50’s.) She makes her decisions for herself. I also don’t complain if a female chooses (HERSELF) to go into porn or chooses not to, again it is HER choice. (I am not one for believing “social pressures” is forcing females to go into porn either. You are women, you have your own brains, you have the ability to make your own decisions and using the term social pressures as a scapegoat for ANY decision is No different than a male saying social pressures made him become a drunk wife beater because that’s what was expected of him. It’s just crap.)

      Your Quote:
      “It maybe nice from time to time of you to actually try to understand the meaning behind things like that before just being an asshole towards another, fellow, human-being about it.”
      I am amused by the hypocrisy of that statement. Saying someone is an asshole towards another human-being while attacking that person and calling them an asshole is an amusing paradigm.

      Your Quote:
      “It’s rather ironic that certain spellings offend you but porn is perfectly acceptable ”
      I never said the spelling “offended me, cause it doesn’t. I also never said porn was “acceptable”. These were both “assumptions” you made based on the way you read my post. (Your quote) “Have you ever even considered that you are are making incredibly inaccurate assumptions?” 😉 *keep smiling*

      Anyway… I will, now that you mentioned it, say that porn is (in my opinion) acceptable, because I have seen statistics which show that men are more often visually stimulated and women are more often mentally stimulated. Therefore a male looks at the act of sex via porn in the same effect that women think about the act of sex via things like “50 shades of grey”. Now saying that, I have to point out that it is socially acceptable for a female to talk openly about her methods of sexual fantasy (as I hear and see women in public, online and on TV OPENLY talking about 50 shades of grey constantly.) without any negativity from society. Men on the other hand are shammed into being afraid to openly admit their visual methods of sexual fantasy though being called pigs, perverts, scumbags… you name it. EVEN THOUGH they are doing exactly the same thing just in their statistically proven gender different way. (I have never seen or heard a male openly discuss on Facebook, or on tv, or in a public forum anything relating to his interest in porn).
      Therefore is females can openly discuss their mental porn, men shouldn’t be shamed by their visual porn.

      Sorry for the uber long post.

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