Whore’s Uniform

This is not about all men. This is about men given to a particular kind of attitude toward women.

I think this is something that stuck with me, because the first time I saw it, I thought he had a point. Because I thought it was a good point, I shared it with others. In the process of doing that, I realized how stupid it is.



Yes, I realize this was a bit of standup comedy, and maybe I shouldn’t take it so seriously. However, part of what makes comedy good is the commentary it provides – a keen sense of the difference between the way society tends to understand things and the way things actually are. It is a way of understanding things from a different perspective. In this case, it seems like a perspective that makes a very comfortable transition to the one held by this guy – The Death of Pretty.

The whole concept of a “whore’s uniform” is basically bullshit, because the definition of whore’s uniform is dependent on factors ranging from the overall existing standard to the personal tastes of the individual making an evaluation. Now, I think what these two men are trying to describe is something along these lines:

wu04

But maybe they meant this:

wu06

So the problem is essentially this:

If the standard is a skirt that just hits the top of your knees, a miniskirt marks you as a whore.
If the standard is ankle length skirts, a skirt that stops at mid-calf marks you as a whore.
If the standard is a burqa . . . well, you can probably see where I’m going with this by now.

If you didn’t find that very useful, I made this non-intuitive graphic to help.

HOOOOOOOERS

The brain is (in part at least) a comparison engine. It is tuned for noticing differences. When something is different – when it stands out against a backdrop of uniformity, we want to examine it. We want to know what the significance of that difference is. We want to know what it means.

Meaning is important to us – it is how we learn to interpret and navigate the world. It is also how we reconcile our impulses with the world.

You are born into the world wanting things. The world abruptly begins to tell you which wants are ok, and where and when it is permissible to satisfy them. This is important to us, because we are conditioned to be social creatures. We look for social cues from others of our own kind to let us understand how to satisfy our urges without stepping on someone else’s toes and getting banished from the village.

However, the impulses we have do not self-regulate. The old wyrm coiled at the center of your brain does not want its fair share. It just wants. Forever. So you reign it in most of the time, while keeping an eye out for when it it’s ok to  . . . indulge.  We are always looking for the special occasion – the little mini-vacation from dealing with the stress of considering others. When is ok to eat or drink to satiety? When is it ok sleep in? When is it ok to not work? When is it ok to express the fullness of my emotional state?

What situation makes it ok to see to my urges without bothering about how other people feel about it?

Sexual urges are no different – except in this case, you are not merely using up resources, such that another person cannot use them. You are not merely burdening someone else with an unfair share of work. You are using a person directly as the resource which satisfies your urges.

I get the impression that the difficulty some men have with women is inability to reconcile then notion of a woman as a person with rights, and the feeling of a woman as a resource capable of satisfying an urge1. If a man has strong sexual urges towards women, and also understands that you must generally respect the wishes of other people, then he is likely to try to find the situation where a woman can be considered not in terms of her person-nature, but in terms of her resource-nature. When is she saying that she is not to be respected as a person? What signal can I look for that tells me I am free to indulge.

Restrictive dress standards do not exist to protect women from objectification. They exist to protect the right of men to objectify some women.

Suppose you are an average male who is attracted to women. Let’s suppose also, that you have something in your system of beliefs that causes you to have a negative attitude about sex. Like you think sex is really bad, or something terrible will happen to you for wanting it or thinking about it. You are still subject to these desires even though you also feel that it is bad. You may feel a twinge of anger directed at the perceived source of your frustrations. Around that same time, your mind is furiously working out a way to relieve the stress your body is under in a way that won’t provoke so much cognitive dissonance that your mind breaks. You probably begin to see all the little ways in which females must be intentionally trying to manipulate you into feeling this way. And what right does she have to make you feel this way, after all, without expecting anything to happen to her? Why should she be so powerful?

Designating someone else as not deserving of respect is a psychological get out of jail free card for people like this. It is a way to carve out a place in both the mind and society where it is safe and acceptable to feel what they are feeling without the negative emotional state that occurs when you have the sense that you have done something wrong. The more restrictive the standard, the greater freedom there is for a man to interpret a garment (or lack thereof) as an invitation to use her as a resource, rather than respect her as a person. It makes it feel like the woman has given consent simply by not adhering to the standard. Or it removes a man’s sense of guilt because he was provoked into a reaction that “couldn’t be helped”2.

And if you feel that all of the above is reasonable, again, do be aware that interpretations vary on what slutty is.



 
 

 

 

1I also get the very strong impression that, when these sorts of men say that women have too much power, they are referring at least in part to resource control. As in, women (people) have too much control over women (resource).
2This probably also explains a lot of the homophobia that seems prevalent within the same demographic. Not just the dudes who hate the object of their own closeted desires either. Some straight dudes just have a very violent reaction to being evaluated (sexually speaking) by another dude. I suspect that the reason may lay in their own understanding of the weight of the male gaze. There is an implicit moral judgement within it. As if a gay man is saying “I am looking at you because you have done something wrong, and because it’s your own fault, I can use you.”
But honestly, wtf do I know. I have a vagina.
I obviously pulled a bunch of pictures and shit from the internet, so I don’t want to claim them as my own. However, I forget where I got most of them, so I will just credit Internet.

No God, Only Man

A few months ago, my father and I were discussing morality and whether it is necessary for a person to believe in god in order to be a good person (to have a moral center). I hold that no, it is not.

The concept of morality (much like law, rights and money) is man made. It is a fabrication to facilitate orderly existence among creatures that have evolved to be primarily concerned with their own immediate interests. Morality is not handed down by the god of any particular religion. Any rights that I have were granted to me by my fellow humans. And they were granted with the expectation that I will behave in kind.

You be cool. I’ll be cool. Everyone is cool.

Though you could make the claim that the urge to establish a moral code is natural to us – as a consequence of evolution. Evolution gave us the ability – the instinct – to “feel” for others. It is why laughter and tears seem infectuous. It is why you flinch when you see someone injured. It is why you can learn a task by watching it performed. It is a reflexive twinge that says “Here is a connection. Here is a thing like me. Here is symmetry.”

This is the basis for empathy, compassion and ultimately, morality.

On this foundation we may begin constructing a moral framework. It is because we are able to identify with other people that admonishments like “How would you like it if someone did that to you?” have meaning to us. And I intend here real meaning – as in understanding. Not “I know the definition of the words you uttered and how they relate to the other words in the sentence.” This is more like visceral knowledge – the way we understand what blue is, or what sour tastes like. It is that understanding that makes us see the connection between another person’s condition and our own. Without that understanding, all you have are rules with no real meaning attached other than obedience avoids punishment.

Now, it may be the case that a god or gods put this whole mechanism into place. It may be the case that, at the end of everything, we will find a very smug deity all “See what I did there?” and shit. That’s fine, but it says nothing about the necessity of belief in god, and so cannot really be used to support the argument that belief in god is necessary for morality.

However, if you do want to start from the assumption that a deity built into its creation a means by which the denizens of said creation might understand morality independent of a set of explicitly stated rules, is it not also reasonable to suppose that the deity might wish us to look to that deeper understanding?

For example, you might set a rule for your child like “Don’t punch your little brother in the face.” Certainly you want them to obey that particular rule, but you may also hope that they eventually grasp why it is in general a bad idea to go around punching people in the face.

If you never extrapolate past the rule to understanding the concept, morality has not yet come into play – you are an amoral creature. Simply following rules does not make you good, it makes you programmable.

My Policies: Ban Marriage

Or at least official recognition of it. You can still do whatever ceremonial hokum your church/club/coven dictates.

So, if your objection to gay marriage is based on religion, your religious organization is free to forbid itself from recognizing gay marriage as valid. And nobody can get all secular about it at you, because it is totally within your religion.

And since the government won’t be recognizing either in an official capacity, it’s perfectly equal. Atheists can’t claim that there are policies that constitute tacit government recognition of religion. Religionists can’t claim that the government is forcing them to . . . I dunno – whatever it is they’re so upset about. Everyone wins.

It is possible that this didn’t have to be a religious debate. There may have been legitimate reasons to deny homosexual couples the same benefits extended to heterosexual couples. I mean, I can’t think of any, but that doesn’t mean that those reasons couldn’t exist. Unfortunately, reason rarely finds purchase in the minds of the righteously indignant. Any potential point of rational contention goes unspoken or gets drowned out under the cries of “SANCTITY!” – which is the word that dooms the whole argument.

When you claim that the government should establish a legal definition of something, and the basis for that definition is a religious text, then you are claiming that the government ought to make laws based on religion. When you start making national laws that are based on religion, you are establishing a national religion. On that matter – Constitution says no.

Busybodies

Also, I would like to offer a fuck you to anyone who smugly holds up one candidate as superior because “at least they’ll get something done”.

Well that’s useless to me if all the things that person will get done are all the things I absolutely do not want done. From my perspective that is negative work. More effort will now be required to get things moving in the direction that I want them move.

And yet, I get the impression that statements like that are actually intended persuade. I think we are just so in love with the idea that people ought to be constantly working, without regard to whether or not any work needs done. So I suppose to some, the idea of a president changing things even to the detriment of the people is superior to someone who just maintains the status quo. I think this would be attributed to work ethic by the people stating it, but to my eyes it looks more like pathology.

I blame the Protestants.

Subtext

I call bullshit on anyone claiming abortion is murder while also claiming that it should be allowed for cases involving rape or incest.

To claim that abortion is murder, you must regard an embryo (or fetus) as a person. So if abortion is killing a person, and you say that there should be exceptions for cases of rape or incest, you seem to be saying that it is ok to kill people so long as they were born as the result of rape or incest. Or possibly you are saying that anyone born as the result of rape or incest is not a real person.

Or possibly you are saying that you don’t actually give two shits about saving innocent little babies. Maybe, just maybe, what really bothers you is the idea that these women – these whores – are out there having shameless, enjoyable pre-marital sex . . . and they are getting away with it.

If you remove all the negative consequences, how will people know it’s bad?

Nondenominational

The birth of religion on our Minecraft server:

Yes, I know it’s backward.

Why is skyface so very disappointed? Perhaps it is our frivolous use of resources. Perhaps it is because we started beating each other to death with handfuls of dirt the very moment we logged into a shared server. Perhaps it is because of the donggarden.

You know what, I bet it is the dongs. I feel like most gods are represented as being pretty solidly anti-dong. Unless that’s what they happen to be the god of, I guess. Then it probably wouldn’t be all that upsetting.

**UPDATE**

A challenger appears!



Call of Duty: Black Ops (plus bonus rambling)

Pizza guy is my favorite.



Was it racist to assume that the cook was a pizza guy? I did base the assumption on his swarthy appearance. Also, the look on the chubby girl’s face is quite possibly the most adorable thing ever.

Before anyone gets an anal cramp about all the guns, I realize that this commercial basically appeals to the worst aspects of human nature. Most of them do. It just so happens that we derive most of what we consider to be fun from our less noble impulses. Here are some other things that you might enjoy while playing this game:



Ok, everything in that image isn’t totally fair. The Devil in Miss Jones was a decent examination of how human beings more or less decide on their own suffering. The movie actually cautions against being preoccupied with selfish impulses, because that is what ultimately damns the soul. I would comfortably say that it is worthy of the label “art” – much more so than many mainstream movies.

Speaking of the damned, I started playing Dante’s Inferno yesterday. The game clearly takes some liberties with the plot. For example, I don’t think Dante was a soldier fighting in the Crusades. Nor do I remember the part where he tames a rancor and rides it around hell.

Artistic license aside, the game is a lot of fun. It is graphically impressive and plays like Devil May Cry: Here’s a room full of enemies for your ridiculously huge sword or gun or swordgun to chew through. Attain combo points. Smash benches and jars to retrieve glowing currency orbs. Finish your enemies with a sweet quick time event.

Dante’s Inferno also has a light side/dark side point system – or holy/unholy in this case. The type of points you get to purchase powers is determined by whether you choose to punish lost souls or absolve them. However, while thematically fitting, I’m not 100% sure Dante would have the authority to do that. Also, being absolved looks a lot like being stabbed in the face with a cross.

The most awesome thing I’ve seen in the game so far is in the circle of Lust. There is a screaming maelstrom in which souls are trapped, eternally at the mercy of the winds of desire. As you approach it, the sound of wind begins to clarify into the moans and gasps of the lustful. The effect is subtle and seamless and fairly creepy. Though for some reason still way less creepy than limbo, where you have unbaptized babies crawling out of a flaming womb and dragging themselves over to you on their little blade arms.

Did you want me to buy something?

I found this in a list of ‘inspirational commercials’:



It’s well done, kind of emotionally uplifting and there is no obvious product, which tells me it is most likely an ad for cologne. Or maybe jeans. Or Mormons.

I am mildly concerned that it is entirely subliminal advertising and I’ll be compelled to buy something I don’t really want without understanding why. Like, some random item will grab my attention at the store and when I try to tell myself I don’t need it, I’ll just picture myself punching a wolf in the face and be all “Fuck you, impulse control – I am going to live my dreams”. Then I buy a pallet of Slap-Chops and drive around listening to Ace of Base for the rest of the afternoon.

Seriously though, even if your self esteem is at an all-time high, you should probably not pick a fight with a wolf. They usually don’t turn into vapor. Unless they are also vampires, which probably won’t work out in your favor either.