Thursday, April 07, 2005

Speaking of Which...

Lately I have been thinking of a particular observation of Mr. Sailer’s regarding pornography. A year ago he wrote about the business:

“I understand that this is a supply driven market -- there are a lot of women out there who want to star in dirty movies. But, this is clearly not, generally speaking, a wise career choice. If the government shut down the making of new pornography, there'd still be plenty of old product for customers to buy, but there would be fewer women wrecking their lives.”

Were that it were true. I think that the explosion of amateur porn clips on the web demonstrates that women are remarkably determined to wreck their lives, for no apparent gain. See, for example, the jail bait Hannah whom Michael Blowhard seems a bit taken with. Actually, don’t *see* the clip, because it really won’t surprise you, at least not if you watch enough HBO. The only thing more boring than young girls acting like they just invented lasciviousness is old men who pretend that young girls have just invented it.

In the comments, Michael Blowhard writes, “Part of what makes my eyes open so wide when I run across stuff like that is thinking about her parents. Were they downstairs? What do they think she's doing with that videocam? In how many teen bedrooms around the country are things like this going on?”

This is the big question for our time. I suppose in my cynicism I can understand an honest whore. A woman who makes a buck on her back at least makes a buck out of the wretchedness, but what do these girls gain by their promiscuity? Specifically, what is fueling this tremendous seller’s market, especially when by all accounts it is flooded?

Even more specifically, what is causing middle-class parents to facilitate the degradation of their daughters? It does seem clear that this kind of behavior (on the part of parents) starts before our daughters even hit puberty. The web is full of middle-brow hand-wringing regarding the sexualization of increasingly-younger children.

It is impossible to even purchase moderately modest clothing for young girls. And I don’t for one minute buy the argument that “it’s what the kids want, and we can’t stop them.” Everyone has boundaries that they will not cross. Imagine, if you will, that it has suddenly become the fashionable thing for pre-teens to dress up in neo-Nazi uniforms and run about giving Roman salutes. Do you honestly think for a moment that modern American parents wouldn’t step up and say firmly, “No, you aren’t going to dress and act that way.”? Of course not.

Therefore the only conclusion a reasonable person can draw from this is that middle-class parents want their daughters to prostitute themselves. But why? What do they stand to gain (“they” being both parents and daughters)?

In our post-Christian society, I think that middle-class parents are selling their young daughters off the same as did the pagans of yore. Instead of currency, these parents gain social status. There is no such thing as bad publicity, and notoriety is the exact same thing as glory in an age where the only evil act you can commit is to judge another. We prostitute our daughters nowadays for the same reason that pimps have always turned out pretty young women—-sexually attractive and available young women confer social status to the ones who can procure her services.

Sociologist Rodney Stark has argued about the beneficial social force of Christianity, specifically for women:

“Christian women had tremendous advantages compared to the woman next door, who was like them in every way except that she was a pagan. First, when did you get married? Most pagan girls were married off around age 11, before puberty, and they had nothing to say about it, and they got married to some 35-year-old guy. Christian women had plenty of say in the matter and tended to marry around age 18.”

In post-Christian America, girls again have no say in who enjoys their favors. They are put onto the sexual treadmill before puberty and are convinced that the only evil that may befall them comes from stepping off. Our daughters are whores because we are their pimps. We feed on their youth, we feed on their fear, and we dump them, spent before their time, once they are no longer of use to us. As in all pagan cultures, we are eating our children. Our female population is showing the effects more starkly, but they are only harbingers of what is to come.

2 comments:

larswife said...

Mrs. Blessed: First, it's wonderful to see you "back in action." You've been missed. Second, as to your observations regarding the "prostitution" of our daughters, for the most part I agree with them. But I think one needs to also look at the culture and climate that surrounds us. From the Supreme Court - http://www.cultureandfamily.org/articledisplay.asp?id=471&department=CFI&categoryid=cfreport - to the local clothing store - http://www.target.com/gp/browse.html/ref=sc_fe_l_0_13142261_3/601-6387660-8325754?%5Fencoding=UTF8&node=13048861 - and everywhere inbetween. Over the course of the last couple of years, my husband (see wildernessvoices.org) and I took a good hard look at every aspect of our (and our children's) life ... what we read (newspaper, magazines, books), watched (tv, dvds, etc.), listened to (radio stations, cds, cassettes), played (video games, online games, board games, etc.) and observed (trips to the mall, grocery store, etc.), and we compared it all against the Word of God. If something didn't comport with the commandments and teachings of the Bible - out it went. In the beginning, it was painful. But you know what? After being away from the smut and filth for awhile, when we were exposed to it again (like going to the mall - those trips are severely limited) we were appalled at the overabundance of explicit, implicit, subliminal and overt "sex" we were exposed to. Even our children, having been out of the public school system for quite some time by then, were disgusted and uncomfortable with what they saw. Until families at all levels and in all spheres of influence make a united stand against the blatant sexualization of our children, sons and daughters included, young women like Hannah will continue to abound. You know why? Because they see nothing wrong with it. They are desensitized to it all, and so are their parents.

Mrs. Blessed said...

Hi Larswife, thank you for your kind words, and thank you for your comment. Yes, the culture is saturated with sex (which is actually my point), but, beyond any discussion of our perverse macrocosm, there is the micro-relationship between parent and child. The difference is that, when you discuss the degraded social situation, you are discussing someone else's daughters. But what explains the parents of those specific, individual girls? In other words, how does one explain what goes through the mind of Hannah's father (assuming she has one, but that is another post)? There are so many Hannahs now. What are these parents thinking? I really can't believe that any man with a pulse can become desensitized to dancing like that, ESPECIALLY when it is his own daughter. Perhaps these people are jaded to seeing sexual imagery every where around them, but there is something very different that goes on in a person’s mind when that sexual image is your own teenage daughter. So what is going on that allows middle-class parents to continue on as they are, even when they see their daughters behaving thusly? Ultimately our society is made up of individual actors, and I wonder what is making those individual actors tick in this particular situation.