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Aug 09 2011

Kurrent Events Korner

Spinster aunts throughout the galaxy are amazed by Illinois Senate Bill 1037. Unlike most senate bills, Illinois Senate Bill 1037 appears to contain little, if any, overt misogyny. In fact, it allows victims of sex trafficking to expunge the criminal records they acquired through being forced into prostitution.

“Victims of human trafficking are often forced into prostitution and other crimes against their own will, and too many of them are being prosecuted as criminals,” Rep. Yarbrough said. “When we have evidence that involuntary human trafficking was the cause of the crime, even though the victim may not have had the ability or representation to prove it during trial, we must do the right thing and reverse their conviction so they can move on with repairing their lives.” [cite]

What tha? This sounds almost reasonable. I must have woken up in a utopian alternate universe where little bones of compassion are occasionally thrown to the oppressed.

Wait, nope, scratch that. No utopia here. The fashion industry, for example, still exists, as I see from the 1537 emails I’ve gotten about young Thylane Blondeau, the pornulated 10-year-old French model whose sexy Vogue photo spreads are flippin icky.

Her mother must be a terrible person! is the refrain.

Well, perhaps Maman has neglected, like everyone else on the fucking planet, to engage in a little critical thinking concerning the nature of pornography and its role in women’s oppression, but she is not the main asshole here. The main asshole is the global pornsick appetite for the sexification of female persons. If there wasn’t an insatiable audience for preteen sexbots, there wouldn’t be any preteen sexbots.

It’s true that Ms Blondeau cannot actually give meaningful consent allowing the commodification of her body, and that this is outrageous. However, it’s not outrageous merely because she’s only 10 years old. Her mother can’t give meaningful consent, either. In a patriarchy, meaningful consent is not an option for any member of the sex class. Sex is a commodity, and women are sex, so Ms Blondeau’s commodification is entirely consistent is the Global Accords Governing Fair Use of Women. Even if her parents weren’t pimping her out, she’d still be fucked.

Why?

She’s a girl in a patriarchy.

After feminist revolt, consent will not be an issue, because there will be no commodification in the first place.

Which is a big part of why dudes hate feminists. Holy shit, we want to take away their porn!

55 comments

  1. TotallyDorkin

    It is particularly telling that everyone is crying out for the mother to answer for her sins. Does she not know that as the woman parent she is responsible for properly shaming her daughter about her body and sexuality? How can she have failed to notice the sluttiness of these photos and fulfill her sacred duty as guardian of youthful virtue?!

    Meanwhile, the father goes unmentioned. The people who published these photos, contribute to this magazine, and just the industry in general go unblamed, because a mother is the public’s favorite scapegoat. Nothing is easier to blame than a Bad Woman.

    Well I blame the patriarchy.

  2. nails

    I find it weird that the dad isn’t mentioned at all, when in my life father dudes are the first ones to say they would kick someones ass for touching their daughter (or taking porny photos of them, presumably). I guess they get to talk tough and feel good about themselves without being blamed for it when they don’t follow through? How nice for them.

    That trafficking bill is awesome. There is going to be a major shit storm when someone realizes that their experience in the world of legal pornography fit the definition of trafficking and tries to utilize the bill, however. It didn”t dawn on me until recently, I had watched so many videos and read so many stories of women in pornography being lied to about what would go on in the movie, being coerced by having been flown out to the video site but refused money to fly back if she didn’t perform sex acts that she refused beforehand, etc. I watched a professor talk about the connection between pornography and trafficking and she rightly pointed out that it is one in the same in situations like the above. There was a woman who was infected with HIV on a pornography set who did a Dateline interview, and her story fit in with trafficking quite well. I hope that the legislation extends to things like drug convictions as well as prostitution offenses, though plenty of porn actresses are pimped out to do “private” gigs that are grounds for arresting them. They deserve the right to use the law as much as any other trafficking victim, but I don’t think the patriarchy will take it so well when porno is implicated in trafficking of women.

  3. Laila

    But what does it say about our society that the mere sight of skin gets interpreted as “pornulated”? Why should (implied) nudity be automatically associated with sex?

  4. Jill

    But what does it say about our society that the mere sight of skin gets interpreted as “pornulated”? Why should (implied) nudity be automatically associated with sex?

    It says that we live in a patriarchy, where women are the sex class. This is what “patriarchy” means.

  5. Notorious Ph.D.

    I’m with Jill on how one of patriarchy’s vilest operations is how it twists the meaning of what we see. Stunningly gorgeous photographs of a 10 year-old in beautiful surroundings? That *shouldn’t* be porny. But patriarchy decrees it so. Therefore it is. So even a ten year-old female is faced with the choice of being invisible, or being a sex object.

    Fuck patriarchy.

    Fuck, fuck, fuck patriarchy.

  6. yttik

    Laila does bring up a good point. In theory a 10 yr girl should never be viewed sexually, no matter how she’s posed or what she’s wearing. Girl children should have the freedom to just be themselves without being perceived as a sex object. Instead they have to defensively engage in various forms of modesty in an attempt to ward off pornulation. All the responsibility for not being perceived as a sex object is put on the child (and the mother.) Meanwhile, we live in a culture where the standard of sexuality really is a ten yr old girl, a culture where pedophilia is the ideal. That’s why we’re all supposed to be rail thin and clean shaven back into pre-pubescence. It’s a sick and horrifying reality.

    Implied nudity, especially of children, should never be associated with sex, but it is because there’s been a massive campaign to make it so.

  7. AlienNumber

    Laila, would you have the same reaction if a 10 y.o. nude-ish boy was “tastefully” posing for a gay men’s fashion magazine? Or, you know, one of the Catholic Church’s publications?

    (let me answer that for ya:) No. You would have rightfully pointed out that hey, it’s not that society is prude about 10 y.o. boys’ bodies, but hey, this shit is wack! Protect our children! etc.

    Sigh.

    Anecdote time: two days ago I was hanging out with my friend’s landlord (61 y.o. male) who was checking his mail. He was looking at a picture on the back of a fashion catalog (spam) and rather visibly salivating over this female model who was wearing just pants and a blazer and a necklace. My friend said that the girl looks 15. I said that she was more likely 13 (this kid looked really young and also she was boobless). The landlord dude protested a little, but he was visibly ashamed that he had just salivated over the pictures of an under 16 y.o. girl (he arbitrarily deemed over the course of the conversation that a girl over 16 is acceptable salivating material. For a 61 y.o. male like himself).

    Short story even longer — while the friend and I were pleased that he actually seemed to be genuinely ashamed at (being caught?) salivating over the picture of an almost naked 13 y.o., I just can’t believe the stupidity. Really, what kind of a human cannot figure out that a 13 y.o. child who looks like a 13 y.o. child is a 13 y.o. child and not a sex object?

  8. speedbudget

    Laila, if you look at all the pictures, you will see that it is not in the slightest “the mere sight of skin.” If all the layouts were akin to the picture Jill chose to illustrate her article, it wouldn’t be a problem. If you look at the whole of the spread, you will see that it is not just sweet pictures of a girl enjoying herself out of doors. There are some very sick, very pornographic pictures in those spreads.

    What makes it even more disturbing is juxtaposing those sick sexified pictures with the pictures like that above that could be any girl having a fun time in the woods. It makes those pictures no longer just a little girl having a fun time in the woods. It makes those pictures dark and dirty. The point of view is all skewed. I feel like there is some pervert lurking behind the trees, then I realize that I am the pervert, since I have been put in the place of the male gaze in this whole debacle of a fashion shoot.

    Anyway, since when do ten-year-olds sell clothes to adult women? Don’t answer.

    The Patriarchy will funk up pretty much anything, by the way, so I blame.

  9. Antoinette Niebieszczanski

    Kurrent Event newsflash: Polygamist leader and all-around boner-popping pervert Warren Jeffs sentenced to life in prison. But I don’t recommend reading news stories about this useless buttwipe at lunch time.

  10. humanbein

    We live in porn world, though most of us have been programmed to accept it to the point that we don’t see it. This is the one place where I can say something like that and it will be understood for what it means, rather than reacted to with defensive hostility.

    It used to be considered shameful, in prudish, presumably religious terms, perhaps, but still at least shameful, for a 61 yr old man to drool over any woman at all, considering his age. And I know there were a lot of men who, for religious or cultural reasons that aren’t entirely admirable, didn’t do this, and allowed themselves to relax out of the perpetual lust state of adolescence somewhere along the course of their lives, generally well before their 60s.

    Those were the rules of the patriarchy then. But now the new rule says, for the sake of selling you crap and TV shows, you must maintain a tireless state of lustful titillation at all times, or you are less than manly, and certainly less of a good consumer.

    I place specific and important blame on this shift to elderly lustfulness entirely on the horrific world-wide experiment with unfettered internet pornography. The idea that women are all porn-bots designed to furnish men with varying degrees of titillation and that this degree is the foremost function of these non-human women things has been accelerating with incredible speed ever since the start of the internet.

    The whirlwind of drugs, shame, sexual addiction, Stockholm Syndrome, cultural degradation (promoted as empowerment), guilt and fear that women who do porn have to deal with is so toxic and brutal that if any woman comes out of the experience equipped with the courage and determination to invoke this wonderful new law I will look upon her as a living saint. It’s the same heart-stopping admiration I have for any woman who prosecutes a rapist: You are doing what I hate myself for not doing when I should have.

  11. angie

    I saw the pictures as well & did make note of it here, but I didn’t blame the mother. I was sickened by the desire of society to have a 10 year old girl modeling these shots.

    I blame Nabokov (and the P, of course). Ever since Lolita was published & readers were too dense (or too full of their own pervy desires) to realize that Humbert Humbert was an unreliable narrator and that sexually precocious 12 year old girls who seduce 40 year old men don’t actually exist outside of a pedophile’s fantasy, we’ve had society pushing younger & younger girls to actually become Lolitas as if it is some kind of ideal to be celebrated with fashion spreads in Vogue magazine.

  12. Kimberly

    Awesome post as always. I’ve so missed your rants.

  13. Sarah

    France is the same country whose citizens got all bent out of shape over efforts to prosecute Roman Polanski for rape. The comments I saw from French poo-bahs in protest of his arrest in Switzerland were horrifying, boiling down to the idea that a 40 year old man plying a 13 year old girl with drugs and alcohol before anally raping her was a normal exercise in seduction. It’s not that surprising, therefore, that they think photo spreads like this are par for the course.

    Those photos are gross, and I felt dirty looking at them. I’m fairly sure that the last one may qualify as actual child porn under the legal definition.

  14. allhellsloose

    Laila they are indeed pictures that depict women as the sex class. Regardless of your age, you are emanantly f*ckable. I see this cr*p in forums all the time. The question now being posed is: why is underage sex a bad thing given that we are all empowered? I kid you not I saw that question asked in Comment is Free, The Guardian.

    Cr*p indeed. This ‘little miss sunshine’ nonsense has to stop. I don’t blame the parents. I blame the patriarchy.

    Three loud cheers for the sex trafficking bill. Hip, hip, hooray.

  15. amrit

    “Her mother can’t give meaningful consent, either. In a patriarchy, meaningful consent is not an option for any member of the sex class. Sex is a commodity, and women are sex, so Ms Blondeau’s commodification is entirely consistent is the Global Accords Governing Fair Use of Women. Even if her parents weren’t pimping her out, she’d still be fucked.”

    I wholly agree that her mother can’t give meaningful consent, either. But nearly every day at work, as a defense attorney, I am faced with mothers who have seemingly given ‘consent’ or actively participated in the sexual abuse of their daughters. I have represented women who have pimped out their daughters. I struggle daily with the issue of legal culpability in the context of the P. When, if ever, are women, accountable in any sense for their role in the abuse of their daughters?

  16. tinfoil hattie

    Wow. Can we take over Illinois & turn it into Savage Death Island? What’s the weather like – not just now, but generally? Any IL blamers here, or should I do my own damn googling?

  17. tinfoil hattie

    I place specific and important blame on this shift to elderly lustfulness entirely on the horrific world-wide experiment with unfettered internet pornography.

    Well, that, and Viagra. Seriously.

  18. Anne

    We did this kiddy pr0n thing with Brooke Shields already, which is who this Blondeau kid looks like. I forget what the justification was for Sheilds. I don’t think there was one. I think the P just kept talking in circles, like it does. ‘She’s not old enough to be sexual therefore these nudie pictures aren’t sexual’ – that kind of horse shit.

  19. Fictional Queen

    Well,I hate dudes right back.
    Get your own planet,dudes!

  20. Gertrude Strine

    @Laila,
    Kids should be perfectly able to run around unclothed with zero expectation placed on them by wage-earning-age members of society.
    They should also be entitled to a free-wheeling life of play and undirected learning from which they would be able to construct some kind of personal manual for getting through the rest of their life.
    Sadly, they must be subjected early and often to the dominance of both their elders and social betters. This includes being formed into whatever the current fashion for sexuality demands. It’s the only way society can perpetuate itself.

  21. The Embezzling Bedazzler

    @tinfoil

    Certainly, radfems should turn this horrid state into Savage Death Island. At least then one could tolerate the weather. Summers are hot and humid, winters are far too cold for my liking. Specific weather related gripes include the February blizzard that shut down most of my town for the better part of a week, the spring/early summer rains that flooded the water treatment plant (that’s right, no tap water that was safe to use for 3 weeks!), and the heat that we’ve been dealing with lately. Finally caught a break on the heat, but we had several days with a heat index over 100.

    On the other subject, it’s interesting that so many are noting the lack of mainstream criticism of the model’s father. In society at large, fathers don’t have to stick around. As long as they stay current on their child support, they even avoid the label “deadbeat dad.” Further, so long as the child support is paid, there are a lot of people who would view an absent father as a good dad. Therefore, since it’s completely optional for a man to be involved in his offspring’s life, how can he be held responsible for said offspring’s decisions, career, life, abuse, etc? I blame.

  22. roseh

    My lobes are blown that it is somehow socially acceptable to portray a ten-year-old child in such creepy poses. I read a pseudo-sciency bullshit article today at Psychology Today. The article’s claim is that pornography addiction actually alters the brain’s dopamine system and the problem becomes physiological. Of course, the focus of the article is on male ED. The altered dopamine idea might explain why the industry has grown as fast as it has, with an exponentially sick demand for even more extreme images.

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/cupids-poisoned-arrow/201107/porn-induced-sexual-dysfunction-is-growing-problem

  23. tinfoil hattie

    Fucking Psychology Today has become Evo-Psych today.

    We’re not the “sex” class. We’re the TOILET CLASS, as Twisty explained a few posts back.

    (rage! rage! rage!)

  24. Kea

    Women are socialised to pimp their daughters, because they fear that otherwise they will end up with no grand children in the female line. It was this way even when I was young, and probably always in a patriarchy, the only difference now being that little is left to the imagination, so that there can be no doubt as to the function of the female.

  25. Cootie Twoshoes

    That magazines such as Vogue purport to be for women is such a laughable crock. In the end these consumable images of women and girls are for men. In the end media directing women and girls to be smoldering sexpots are for men.

    Fashion is gross.

  26. redpeachmoon

    I haven’t seen all of the photos of this child, but the 2 shots; in the woods on a blanket (or is it a little bed?) and of the long legged babyfaced girl outside of the abandoned building evoke actual terror in me. Having seen many late night crime shows, these ARE the places murdering rapists take girls and women. This staging seems deliberate.
    How about that perv who owns American Apparel? His advertising shots of young teens on beds are outrageous, and totally mainstream! I see them at Huff Post regularly, even when/especially when? he is in the news for ‘alleged’ abuse of the young women who work and model for him.

    So glad to have a place to go with this outrage.
    Thanks.

  27. Ottawa Gardener

    Funny I thought of Brooke Shields too especially her photo shoot for Pretty Baby though she played a child prostitute in that movie so there was a possibility (somewhat) of separation between girl and prostitute-girl. Anyhow, it continued beyond that shoot.

  28. Embee

    @roseh that’s an interesting link. My cousin is currently destroying his second marriage with his internet porn addiction. It gels with my theory that men only relate to women (intimately) as in an addiction.

    There’s no real love and respect in PIV sex, simply a need to get a fix that reinforces a man’s sense of superiority. This power play is accompanied by the dopamine release of orgasm, so it is a veritable 8 ball of stimulus. Meantime, the woman is (possibly) getting her dopamine and oxytocin whilst being degraded, thus perpetuating her compliance with the system.

    The only solution is to stop having sex with men and sober up.

  29. Frumious B.

    I realize that those pictures are freely available on the intertubes, but I didn’t need to see that here.

    Regarding JonBenet Ramsey:

    It’s the return of the repressed all over again, here before us, strutting its stuff and doing its cultural work because we so badly need it. Where else can we find forbidden material served up to us in ways we can both enjoy and disown? We have to deal with a most uncomfortable heritage: an “innocent” child who is also deeply eroticized. That’s an unthinkable idea, but JonBenet is one of those stories that allows us to think it.

    (emphasis mine)

    http://www.slate.com/id/2148089/

  30. Frumious B.

    @AlienNumber My friend said that the girl looks 15. I said that she was more likely 13 (this kid looked really young and also she was boobless).

    And what exactly do 15 and 13 yr old girls look like? What do 18 yr old girls look like? Who made you the arbiter? If you spend any time around girls in their teens, or of any age, you know that there is huge disparity in what girls look like at any age. I just spent an afternoon with an 11 yr old girl who is my height (5′ 6″), my weight, and my cup size, and I am 40 (and boobless). The only thing distinguishing us was wrinkles, which are easily air brushed – excuse me, shopped, out of a photo.

  31. Shelby

    what kind of a human cannot figure out that a 13 y.o. child who looks like a 13 y.o. child is a 13 y.o. child and not a sex object?

    A male human. Selfishness and the delegation of responsibility are the cornerstones of the male psyche. Others, the magazine, the photographer and the girl herself, have created the photograph. It’s not his fault that he salivates over the the photograph because he is, after all, a man with normal masculine desires. It’s everybody elses fault, but mainly the girl’s for tempting him.

    Fuck that photograph of a 10 year old naked Brooke Shields was disturbing.

  32. Nolabelfits

    How does one pronounce “Thylane?”

  33. AlienNumber

    As long as they stay current on their child support, they even avoid the label “deadbeat dad.” Further, so long as the child support is paid, there are a lot of people who would view an absent father as a good dad. Therefore, since it’s completely optional for a man to be involved in his offspring’s life, how can he be held responsible for said offspring’s decisions, career, life, abuse, etc? I blame.

    It is completely optional for a father to be around and he is not held responsible if anything bad happens, even when he directly causes the harm. Most maddening though are the men, including my own parental unit, who still don’t do anything useful for the development of the child and yet have no qualms about taking responsibility when the offspring loosely associated with them becomes successful. (Anyone noticed the fights between Lindsay Lohan’s mom and dad over who gets to take some of the dough home? It’s not a stretch to point out that Michael Lohan, a Wall Street trader and a dude, lifted about zero fingers in the actual raising of Lindsay Lohan. Left her when she was 3 for a while only to come back later to continue not lifting a finger while in presentia . Yet he is not shy at all about claiming a piece of the pie, now that she’ll all grown and stuff.)

    My sisters and I often wonder what exactly is the difference between a ‘father’ and a ‘sperm and last name donor.’ Anybody? (Incidentally, my last name donor blames his children’s “attitude problem” towards him on my mom, because of course, it’s always the mother’s fault.)

  34. Former Blamer

    Angie, I am not sure if you were reiterating the claim that Nabokov wasn’t really a pervert for writing Lolita, but I’ll opine on this subject anyway:

    Nabokov WAS the Patriarchy and he DID get off on imagining the rape of little girls. Or he wouldn’t have written the book. Writers write about what they like to think about.

    Humbert Humbert was Nabokov’s alter ego, which he and his followers then pretended was just a figment of a writer’s imagination in order to deflect blame.

    “Ada” also begins with a scene involving gratuitiously naked children. I never finished reading past it. Back then I couldn’t articulate what the patriarchy was, but I knew it when I saw it.

  35. Jill

    When Kubrick was making the film “Lolita” he was crabbed out that prudey censors wouldn’t allow him to portray his 13-year-old actress with all the dude-pleasin “eroticism” in Nabokov’s hotsy-totsy novel.

  36. Former Blamer

    Wasn’t Kubrick responsible for that asinine so-called classic “A Clockwork Orange?” I couldn’t finish watching that either.

  37. A Ginva

    @ redpeachmoon:

    Death, murder, torture, bondage, rape, being forcibly drugged, prostitution and beating of women are a very common theme in fashion photos – just as it is in pornography. All this is sexualised and packaged for male consumption. Men hate women, and they get off on hating us.

    Nolabelfits:

    In French you’d pronounce Thylane something like “Tee-lan”

    Lolita is just a manifesto for pedocriminals. Kubrick, Polanski, Nabokov, all the same shit.

    @ roseh:
    This craze about porn being an addiction for men seriously pisses me off. Ok, it might be an addiction and might have harmful effects on men, but they’re not on the receiving end of rape & torture of porn for chrissake. They GET to do the raping. The only reason dude culture cares about the negative effects of porn isn’t because it’s the world n°1 rape machine and the most vile women-hating propaganda on earth: it’s because porn affects dude’s little sensitive egos. Well, I’m gonna cry.

  38. Mujerylegs

    I get how she and her mother can’t give meaningful consent on accounta patriarchal socialization and patriarchy-set incentive structures. But does that mean it’s *just* another facet of sex class oppression that women get blamed for policing other women’s sexuality? Or is it also women’s real behavior at issue?

    A la “the pressure on women to restrict their sexuality comes from other women” – Roy Baumeister in this craptastic Salon interview, http://www.salon.com/life/sex/index.html?story=/mwt/feature/2011/08/09/equality_and_sex.

    Seems like there are three possible things going on here:
    1- Women DO buy/sell/trade/police one another’s sexuality. They internalize social norms and reproduce cultures of misogyny that hurt themselves and other women.
    2- Women DON’T b/s/t/p female sexuality. That’s a dude thing, women are oppressed by social norms but part of cultures of misogyny is blaming the victim.
    3- Combo of 1 + 2, which perhaps Phil can flesh out for us sometime?

  39. Saralyn

    @ A Ginva: Thank you so much for pointing out the issue with the porn addiction link. In reading it I was furious to see that the point was to help men fix their damn ED…not on the fact that the shit that they were getting off to was degrading to women and shredding away any human emotion (if any was left) for women. Then men are all surprised that the sight of a real woman alone isn’t enough anymore…which is problematic in itself-as seen with little 10yr old Thylane. Since in the Big P men hate women, I am sure that I was naive to think that there would be any thought for women’s torment in pornography (and generally in patriarchy) mentioned in that article-because their just isn’t any. Grrr…

    IBTP

  40. tinfoil hattie

    Mujerylegs, there’s only this one option:

    4 – No matter what you do, if you’re a woman/girl, it’s wrong.

  41. Mujerylegs

    Haha, thanks for clarification tinfoil hattie. Ms. Marcotte has now posted a riposte to the Salon interview with the misogyconomist here – http://www.slate.com/blogs/xx_factor.html. But it also makes a mujerey leg twitch in inchoate annoyance.

  42. A Ginva

    That article from the Baumeister thing is some hateful load of shit. It couldn’t be clearer that it considers women as sex. Only contrary to what the article says, women aren’t those who profit economically from being fuck-toilets(that’s one of Patriarchy’s Biggest Lie).

    The way patriarchy coerces women into fuck-toilethood is by stealth: that is, it steals away access to means of production which then forces women to give in their bodies to men in exchange of survival. Men exchange, sell and buy women’s bodies as commodities, and only men profit from the buying, selling and using women. It’s actually one of the most lucrative patriarchal businesses in the world.

    Ah and by the way, if men give just about enough food and shelter for women to survive, it’s only to keep them as live stock, or give the illusion men care about them – hence the occasional restaurant of movie.

  43. A Ginva

    @Saralyn: my pleasure! Thanks for your comment too.

  44. Ex-Advertising, Now Free

    In society at large, fathers don’t have to stick around. As long as they stay current on their child support, they even avoid the label “deadbeat dad.” Further, so long as the child support is paid, there are a lot of people who would view an absent father as a good dad. Therefore, since it’s completely optional for a man to be involved in his offspring’s life, how can he be held responsible for said offspring’s decisions, career, life, abuse, etc?

    What I don’t understand is the MRAs who claim that the so-called “optional father” is the derring-do of the overpowering matriarchy we live in, and evidence supreme of women’s collective cunning in setting up society so that “mother” is a synonym for “sole person responsible for the welfare of the child.” More ridiculous yet is the insistence that the alleged vast matriarchical conspiracy sees to it that every class is a legally protected class, except for the downtrodden middle-class white male, who is in grave danger of losing his agency and independence at every turn. Yes, that. It would be laughable if it weren’t so poisonous, and used as an excuse for politicians on all sides of the aisle to cut benefits to the needy at every turn.

    They are right to be miffed that a father’s participation in child-rearing is regarded as optional or disposable in most Western societies, but their blame is completely miscast. Predictably, their arguments break down around the issue of child support, wherein they are not outraged that by default, most will be unable to participate in their children’s lives to the extent their soon-to-be ex-wives will, but rather, that they will “owe the b*tch money.”

  45. alamo

    “But what does it say about our society that the mere sight of skin gets interpreted as “pornulated”? Why should (implied) nudity be automatically associated with sex?”

    It’s not the skin. It’s that she’s doing the sexy, vacant, jaded, joyless expressions that you see in sexy adult models. The look that one poster here called “stunningly gorgeous.” Yuck.

  46. alamo

    Oh yeah, and even though we live in a patriarchy, somehow many moms out there manage to not pimp out their daughters. The reason that this mom is in the news to begin with is because she is the exception, because most moms would not consent to pimping out their daughters. So yeah, moms who pimp out their daughters are responsible for allowing their daughters to be abused.

  47. random_anomaly

    speedbudget has a good point. I have looked at some of the other photos (trying to convince myself that I was overreacting, because i could not believe what i was seeing), and they are very pornographic, showing her in several sexually explicit positions and in skintight, fitted outfits. I had the same thoughts after viewing them – that the fashion industry, notorious for promoting the “standard of beauty” as a rail thin, prepubescent child, with no body hair and a childlike face, has started using actual children to promote this image.

  48. Notorious Ph.D.

    @ alamo: that was me. Just to clarify (in case it makes a difference, and recognizing that it might not), I was referring to the composition.

  49. Anne

    Two explanations of Lolita I’ve heard have been that 1) it was basically a quirky love story and the kid was asking for it, which never sat well with me obviously, and 2) the feminist defense that Humbert’s an unreliavle narrator and that Nabakov was condemning the sexualization of children, which was encouraging until I read the book and then it was pretty unbelievable. Also, according to statement’s Nabakov’s made about the book, he didn’t seem to think there was anything wrong with it and was pretty tellingly defensive that the plot was soooo very very far outside anything he’d ever considered in his own life.
    I’m glad I didn’t pay for my copy.

  50. angie

    @Former Blamer — I did not mean to imply that Nabokov wasn’t a perv. The author’s intent and the actual effect are two different things. Nabokov’s alter-ego, as you note, *was* Humbert Humbert. Nonetheless, what I meant to say is that anyone who reads the book should realize that regardless of what Nabokov intended, a pedophile is *not* a reliable narrator regarding how a 12 year old girl seduced him because such little girl’s don’t exist outside of a pedophile’s fantasy. Unfortunately, as I stated, the opposite happened. People ended up *believing* Humbert Humbert/Nabokov that such little Lolitas do exist, which, actually, was probably Nabokov’s intent all along.

  51. mearl

    Some thoughts:

    1) Brooke Shields’ Lolita-esque photos for CK raised a stink, so in the wake of THAT success, Klein decided to throw some sexualised pre-pubescent boys into the mix circa 1995. Remember these ads? Now pervy men can expand their child porn repertoires to include underage boys! (If they weren’t doing it already, of course).

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZVk21Pco-c

    2)I take issue with anyone who makes the lame argument that it’s the “viewer” who interprets the images as sexual. Give me just a SMALL break. In a society where women are openly and continually objectified, sexualised, and infantilised; where we barely ever see MEN naked and sexualised in the same way; where a common theme in porn is “barely legal;” where female children are recruited in huge numbers for the sex trade juggernaut; where men occasionally get busted for their use of children for sex; and where porn “addiction” is now a huge and growing issue (to add to rape, incest, abuse, and sex trafficking) – I don’t know WHAT planet you’d have to be from to state that an individual can ignore these pervasive cultural influences and view sexy images of a 10-year-old simply as “a kid having fun.” I’ll believe those people as soon as they produce the cultural and historical vacuum in which I can view images.

    3) I think the current hetero male view of women as sex toilets can be summed up as follows:

    Men want adult women to stay as thin as teenagers, to look young and to act naive, to remove all our body hair, and often to pretend to be underage (schoolgirl fetish, anyone?) so the men can get off on the idea of having sex with children.

    Men want female children to put on the accoutrements of adult women (makeup, heels, and a sexy, wanton attitude) and get naked so that men can get off on the idea of having sex with children.

    My understanding of this whole circus is that men have no sexual interest in either female children as simply CHILDREN, or in adult women as simply ADULTS. A creepy intersection of both is necessary at all times for male sexual interest to exist.

    I could get into analysis of all this for DAYS, but I’m already sick to my stomach.

  52. Fictional Queen

    Reminds me of this:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bild_Lilli_doll
    “He drew a cute baby, but his boss didn’t like it. So he kept the face, added a ponytail and a curvy woman’s body and called his creation “Lilli”.”
    Creepy!

  53. mearl

    Correction: I meant to write, “…where supposedly upstanding and powerful men occasionally get busted for their use of children for sex, and when I say ‘occasionally,’ I’m given to understand that the ones who actually get BUSTED are the tip of the iceberg.”

  54. ptittle

    You know, I didn’t fully understand until JUST NOW my confusion and anger when, when I was somewhere between 10 and 14?, going downstairs into the family den to watch tv, wearing my baby dolls (ugh, that’s what they were called – summer pjs) because it was really hot, and it was just before my bedtime anyway, and my father, also in the den with my mother watching tv, chastised me, angrily, somehow making me feel as if I’d done something wrong, making me feel somehow ashamed, telling me to put my housecoat on or something…(and my mother seconding that, of course)…

    Now I understand who should have been blamed.

  55. lizor

    mearl wrote:

    “My understanding of this whole circus is that men have no sexual interest in either female children as simply CHILDREN, or in adult women as simply ADULTS. A creepy intersection of both is necessary at all times for male sexual interest to exist.”

    I had not seen things in those clear terms until now, but there is one big mouthful of truth.

    ptittle, I had a similar experience commencing at 12 where several adults told me some version of “you are a very sexy girl. Watch out for men.”, which was utterly confusing to me at the time and did something – I can’t describe it – very fucked up to my head and my sense of self. They were right though. Three years later I was seduced and raped by a 33 year old.

    I wonder who I should blame for that whole ugly scenario?

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