Anyone who knows me well probably knows that just typing the title of this post is making me simultaneously blush and feel nauseated.
I never thought I’d be thanking Donald Trump for anything, much less writing about him and sex in the same post, as utterly appalled as I am about his talk and behavior regarding women and sex and the demeaning, disgusting combination of both topics.
But, Donald Trump has also singlehandedly opened the door to discussing the harsh and horrendous reality of what is happening both nationally and internationally, beyond the world of “locker room talk.”
The type of world that should be publicized as much or more than Trump’s vulgarity, which needs no more publicity.
The type of world that affects lives, not just sensibilities and emotions.
And that is an open door that I’m walking through.
Let’s talk also about the yoga pants controversy of not too long ago, when women were very openly criticized for wearing snug-fitting pants because the clothing supposedly invited the oversexualization of butt curvature by men who could not avert their eyes or keep their own pants zipped. Because wearing yoga clothes does not mean that every woman wants sexual advances more than she wants comfortable pants.
Let’s talk also about breastfeeding, however covered or uncovered the mother left her breasts to feed her baby, not because she wanted to welcome harassment or controversy or ogling of her mammary glands, but because she wanted to feed her hungry child. Because every exposed breast is not an invitation to sex.
Let’s talk also about the unbelievable popularity of the Shades of Grey book and movie series, which I personally know nothing about except that apparently it encourages bondage and sex acts that would send me into a closet and not into bed, or the Magic Mike franchise of male strippers who supposedly flaunt their buff bods on the movie screen or on the Ellen Degeneres show and gyrate on any girl’s lap or face, or Playboy or Marilyn Monroe, or Rubenesque lady paintings or every other public display of male or female sexuality for entertainment purposes.
Let’s talk also about strip clubs for every sexual orientation and the objectification of bodies of every portion and proportion, the Mardi Gras tradition of flashing breasts for beads, the benefit races where participants run in their underpants, the use of fake massage parlors as cover businesses for brothels… You name it, someone can add a sexual component to it.
Let’s talk also about the selling of children for sex and the money they can provide for parents’ or guardians’ drugs, even in the US, and the debt bondage of domestic and foreign women and children who are to work for food or for a roof, and the international practice of selling child brides or enslaving ISIS brides, essentially to be raped and impregnated and oftentimes then jailed for being raped.
Let’s talk also about boyfriends who prostitute their girlfriends for money and the girls who love or fear their men too much to say no, and the rise of supposedly mutually beneficial sugar daddy and sugar baby arrangements between wealthy married or single men and their typically younger women who desire a lifestyle beyond their own financial abilities and the sex in between.
Let’s talk also about the killing of countless fetuses when pimps and traffickers require the exploited women to have sex with 5 to 35 men A DAY, to the staggering 55% of trafficked women who are forced into one abortion and 37% who have multiple abortions while being used for sex trafficking, one woman even stating that she has had 17 abortions while being trafficked (http://www.lifenews.com/2014/09/24/shock-study-55-of-sex-trafficking-victims-become-pregnant-forced-into-abortions/ and http://www.shreveporttimes.com/story/news/watchdog/2016/05/23/pregnancies-abortions-common-trafficking-victims/83661814/).
Let’s talk also about the severity of global poverty and its effect on women who have little to no education and few opportunities to own businesses or make money, who are scammed into job or school offers and go overseas with the thought of improving their own lives or the lives of their families, who are alone in foreign lands with language and skill barriers, and who are left with nothing to offer other than the only asset they possess – themselves (http://www.thefreedomproject.org/human-trafficking/ and http://borgenproject.org/poverty-contribution-human-trafficking/).
Let’s talk also about the exploitation of power over minors in sexual ways, however consenting the minor is or is not, by adults who absolutely should be protecting the kids instead. I live in a borough that gained national attention for multiple teachers’ arrests and sentencing for sexual advances and acts, with administrators, school board members, and fellow teachers being lumped into grand jury investigations of their potential accessory roles to cover up years of this sexual exploitation of minors. Let’s talk about what more could be done to prevent such behaviors, beyond background checks and hotlines (https://www.justice.gov/criminal-ceos/extraterritorial-sexual-exploitation-children).
Let’s talk also about the use and abuse of foster kids after they are released from their already broken system to transition into life without money, housing, transportation or oftentimes families to care about them, left with only their bodies to be squandered by pimps and traffickers who lie in wait for these vulnerable and desperate ones, especially when people can be sold for sex hundreds and thousands of times per year, unlike drugs that can only be sold once. Let’s talk about why these children are so available for such abuses, like the 60% of 100 child victims who were uncovered by 2013 FBI raids of sex trafficking rings in more than 70 US cities who had been in foster homes or group homes (http://www.childrensrights.org/newsletter-article/in-focus-foster-youth-fall-prey-to-traffickers/).
Let’s talk also about endangered runaways and homeless youths, domestic abuse and war and sexual assault victims, socially discriminated individuals (ie LGBTQ), and any other vulnerable member of society who could be exploited and trafficked for sexual purposes, regardless of age, gender, or nationality. Let’s talk about how this is continuing on such a regular basis for 1 in every 6 endangered runaways and for the 4.5 million people trapped in forced sexual exploitation on a global level, and for the 19,287 cases of known sex trafficking cases in the US since 2007 (https://polarisproject.org/sex-trafficking), never mind the cases that never have arrests, charges, or trials because trafficked victims are rarely believed by outsiders unless proof of exploitation is evidenced.
Let’s talk also about what happens at truck stops across the US, where domestic and foreign women and children are prostituted openly and are easily transported across state and country lines for further sex or labor trafficking, with little interference into the fake massage parlor brothels or headlight and sticker signaling or internet sales of victims for sex for debt or bondage payments. Let’s talk about why so little is being done to stem the unending flow of women especially and children, who are slightly more protected by specific trucker-against-trafficking awareness groups. (https://traffickingresourcecenter.org/sex-trafficking-venuesindustries/truck-stop-based)
Let’s talk also about Super Bowl Sunday and political rallies and other major sporting or entertainment events where domestic and foreign women and children and LGBTQ individuals are exploited at increased levels physically and online by attendees and anyone else who might be in town for a good time with a little extra cash and too much time. Let’s talk about how to raise awareness and cut off the stream of trafficking victims (http://www.relevantmagazine.com/reject-apathy/facts-behind-super-bowl-sex-trafficking-epidemic).
Let’s talk also about pornography, websites like Ashley Madison that are created for the express purpose of cheating on a spouse, and the almost $17B effect that internet porn has on US businesses and industries while 37 million employees are viewing porn at the rate of almost 30,000 people per second, and the 47% of families that are affected by porn on a regular basis, and the 300% increase in marital infidelity when porn is involved, and the porn videos that are created every 39 minutes of every day of every year. Let’s talk about why 2.5 billion emails are sent or received daily with porn content and why 35% of all internet downloads contain pornographic material (https://www.webroot.com/us/en/home/resources/tips/digital-family-life/internet-pornography-by-the-numbers).
Let’s talk also about these travesties and more that are going on behind closed doors, on computer screens, at truck stops, and in every corner of the Earth where sex is more important than respect or real love, where money trumps the rights and value of individuals, where the degradation of humanity is occurring on deeper levels than “locker room talk” that only just exposes the tip of the monumental iceberg that lurks beneath our supposedly placid water of sexuality.
Is this to say that all is lost, that there are no men or women who are honest, good-to-the-core people in the world? Absolutely not.
All I’m saying is that there is a lot more to be said. Beyond Donald Trump or Bill Clinton and their words or actions.
There are way more lives at stake, quite literally, if we don’t talk about the rest of the picture.