Friday, March 16, 2007

chastity

Mrs Morrison (yes, the Mrs Morrison) has a very scary story about purity balls and people not being allowed to say "vagina" (even though they were performing The Vagina Monologues at the time - er well what did they do about the "cunt" monologue then??? or don't Americans know what that word means?). Isn't the whole point of The Vagina Monologues to remove the taboo surrounding the word, so that we can all celebrate our vaginas?

A purity ball, apparently, is where you get all dolled up like a third-rate bridesmaid and pledge to your dad that you will keep your virginity until you are married. Eeeeuuuwwwww!!!! As Patricia says, that is so Freudian! I mean, okay, underage sex is bad, because of the power issues and the fact that you haven't got the wherewithal or the knowhow to achieve orgasm at that age, but pre-marital sex is good. To co-opt the "goods" analogy, it's a case of "try before you buy"...

There's another excellent blog post about the concept by a dad, who, I am glad to say, echoes Patricia's and my feelings on this.

I am horrified that this kind of medieval nonsense exists in the 21st century. They'll be bringing back chastity belts next.

8 comments:

CJ said...

Regarding those Purity Balls that our government is helping fund....
It's interesting to note that many of the churches who originally promoted this idea are Reconstructionist groups, rather than mainstream Christian denominations. Reconstructionism is a rapidly growing and arguably heretical sect of Christianity, whose adherents follow the teachings of John Rousas Rushdoony and Gary North in addition to and often instead of those of Jesus Christ, and their goal is to eventually take over America and install their brand of faith as the state religion.
Here are a couple of websites that will show you what many of these folks really believe:
http://0rz.com/?vDVsP
http://0rz.com/?vcDYg
http://0rz.com/?NsCrB
And, here is a link for VisionForum, a HUGE promoter of a similar idea -- the Father-Daughter Retreat concept -- and one of America's leading homeschooling curriculum companies. VisionForum is run by Doug Phillips, son of ex-Reagan cabinet member Howard Phillips and pastor of Boerne Christian Assembly, a hyper-patriarchal Reconstructionist congregation where women are relegated to virtual slavery in their own homes, denied higher education, forbidden to hold jobs or seek public office, and are discouraged from voting; they are not permitted to participate in prayer in the church services, make prayer requests in church, or even receive communion unless it is served to them by their husband or another male member of the congregation.
http://www.visionforum.com/
The Phillipses are quite the father and son team, too -- Howard Phillips is the founder of the Constitution Party, whose 2004 presidential nominee was League of the South member Michael Peroutka. While the Constitution Party courted the votes of the League of the South (identified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center) and other neoConfederate groups in 2004, Howard's son, Pastor Doug, was hard at work garnering the Christian vote, encouraging his congregation to vote for Peroutka and warning them that they were not spiritually "at liberty" to vote for the Bush or Kerry because of their unBiblical stances on key issues.
And our government is funding father-daughter dinner dances for these groups. Sweet.

Joe said...

Being a filthy pervert I thought these purity balls were some bizarre puritan take on love eggs, except designed to stop any possible penetration or sexual fun instead of stimulate it. The notion of linking pre-marital virginity to pledging to 'daddy' goes beyond Freudianism into the distinctly "eugggh" camp - does daddy perform regular hymen checks??? Jeez, I'm a proud perv but that whole area creeps out even me :-)

CJ, that is some very scary stuff; I just finished an advance copy of Richard Morgan's new novel, Black Man (due May I think) which has a future where America has split into three - the Pacific Rim territories, the North and East which are still Union and lastly the middle and South which is Jesusland. When you read about this kind of thing or the burning of Harry Potter books because they encourage Satanism or banning Darwinian evolution in schools you realise he may be writing science fiction, but it might just be a '20 years into the future' type of fiction...

And isn't it interesting how many large religions, present and past, seem fixated on controlling female sexuality. Is it because they associate it with purity of spirit or more likely it is just another level of control? Probably why some of these creeps are so terrified of old religions like paganism, Wicca etc which celebrate the sexual and sensous. It's a shame really, I suspect that these very uptight people are probably the ones in the world who most need to get laid to chill them out and relax them a bit...

Joe said...

I forgot to say, Neil Gaiman wrote on this ridiculous ban on the Vagina Monologues on his journal a few weeks ago, so it is obviously doing the rounds as different performances are put on. Don't recall much in the way of fuss even here in the heartland of that dour presbyterian John Knox when the Vag Mon or Puppetry of the Penis were performed regularly at the Edinburgh Fringe. Although I do remember watching two old dears picking up a copy of the book at my old bookstore and tut-tutting over it - couldn't help but notice they thought it awful it should be on display but they spent ages looking at how awful it was! And, to their credit, they didn't come up and demand we remove it from display.

Yvonne said...

@ cj - Your government - but I'm sure you didn't vote for them.

Reconstructionist Christians, what a horrible idea.

@ Joe - you may have a slightly weird head, but that's nothing compared to these wackos.

celticpole said...

I hope you realize the folks promoting these things are the fringe element of christianity. You might label me as a conservative christian (the older I get the more I hate labels yet the more I see how easy they are to use) and therefore place me in the same camp as these "purity Ball" folks but when I read and saw a report on this I said, EUUW! That's a little freaky." Now I'm all for encouraging our/my children to abstain for sexual relations until marriage. It's not a bad thing - in light of STD/emotional readiness, abstinance before marriage has it's merits.
Now what I heard of the highschoolers who used the word vagina - it was during a school function, not a Vagina Monolgues production - where several ages of children were in attendance. In deference to the age factor the principal asked these girls not to say certain things. They agreed. Then they went back on their agreement, while on stage, too late to be pulled. They should face the consequences, which is pretty mild.

CJ said...

No, I didn't vote for them, but I lived in Florida at the time, so my votes didn't count, LOL. BTW, the companies who developed and manufactured the voting machines used in the 2000 and 2004 elections are Reconstructionist owned: the Howard Ahmanson family is involved in hard right politics and the ownership and funding of major voting machine companies, and has made large donations to Caltech.

The Silver Eel said...

It occurs, as something new to me but no doubt very old to others, that men's desire to control female sexuality is actually about their inability to understand or control their own sexual impulses.

I've read something in Bruno Bettelheim's The Uses of Enchantment about how some fairy tales provide instruction by metaphor on how this should be achieved.

Yvonne said...

@ celticpole - yes I do realise that this is a fringe element of Christianity - but it's a growing and powerful fringe.

I don't see the harm in a bit of sexual experimentation before marriage, but I do think kids these days start too young and give it away too lightly.