Slut Shaming

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by Thag Jones on October 2, 2010

I’ve seen a lot of feminist musings on removing the shame from the word slut, and lamenting the “double standard” that it implies. I think they have it, as usual, perfectly wrong. Once you remove the feeling of shame from “slutdom,” you’re ruined. The fact that some feminists are trying to reclaim and defang the word “slut” shows that there is still at least some shame attached to it. I think it should have more than it does, because this is the root of the problem with the disintegration of the family and the way we are, as a society, slipping into a Sodom and Gomorrah kind of world where anything goes. Oh, I’m sorry, did I use the Bible as a “guilt trip”? OK, let me rephrase for the literarily challenged: Living like apes in the trees is not good for the human spirit, for human creativity, for a higher minded life.

The notion that shame is a bad thing in and of itself is what drives this impulse; certain words have been branded as “negative,” and therefore, “bad,” as if everything negative is bad. Electricity only works with a positive and negative charge. This can be used as a metaphor without descending into false logic – we cannot separate ourselves from the natural world or rewrite nature. Although not overtly the topic of this article (via Dr Helen) on having or not having children, I couldn’t help honing in on this paragraph:

Sad, but in all likelihood, they will end up just like their parents: single mothers with too many children, forced to work two minimum wage jobs and still unable to make ends meet, or, worse, like their irresponsible, absentee fathers.

The author probably doesn’t even know he’s doing it, but this is obvious feminist language when you’re attuned to it. It’s an attempt to reverse the so-called double standard and shame the males in the equation while painting the females as innocent, passive victims. A 14-year-old unwed pregnant girl used to be called a slut. Calling her something else doesn’t change what she is. Taking the shame off her only gives her permission to ruin her life by being a slut – it’s not the baby that ruined her life, it was her own actions, her own willingness to open her legs to some horny 14-year-old boy who had nothing really to lose in the deal.

It is truly sickening to read feminists calling on young women to “embrace their inner slut” or whatever crass nonsense supposedly in an effort to erase the dreaded “double standard.” Sorry girls, but Nature has given us a double standard and no amount of redefining words, easy access to abortion, women’s “rights” and the like can erase the facts of biology and thousands of years of evolution. Shame is a powerful tool and all powerful tools can be misused, but just because a nail gun can be used to kill someone doesn’t mean it can’t still nail down your floorboards.

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