Stealthing and other sex issues
Is it any wonder civilization is in upheaval? To kick things off:
Madonna, to promote her new documentary, Madame X, threw herself provocatively and awkwardly on Jimmy Fallon’s desk. As he attempted to cover her unsettling geriatric exposure with his jacket, she hopped off and lifted her skirt to tout her black underwear. “Art is important in our lives,” she explained. To add heft, she quoted the American writer, James Baldwin, “Artists are here to disturb the peace.”
Meanwhile, Gabriel Union, actress and recipient of the NAACP Image Award, confessed,
“I got divorced and like other divorced people, you have a mental bucket list. I had a bucket list of diddles’…’Fasten your seatbelts for the F*** Boy Express,’ I said to my 2006 self.”
Can’t you just hear her mother saying, “I loved your new book,” You Got Anything Stronger?, which she is also currently promoting. To requote Madonna, “Art is important in our lives.” Maybe Gabriel was also moved by James Baldwin.
Meanwhile on the West Coast, “stealthing” has become such a problem that recall survivor, Gavin Newsom, had to rein in guys stealthily removing their condoms right before sex -- officially referred to as non-consensual condom removal. It is now a civil sexual battery offense. The article doesn’t explain how stiff the penalties are, but it is disturbing the peace; however, “art” is not mentioned in the story. According to a study back in 2019, 12% of women had been a victim of stealthing. In a separate study, 10% of men admitted to stealthing. The hookup culture generates unexpected and disturbing statistics especially as one mulls over the mechanics of stealthing.
The world really is awash in sex, and we seem so far past the biological reason for our species having it. My wife and I drove through Kerrville, Texas, a little over a week ago. A hubbub of Heartbeat Law protestors held signs reading, “I’m a woman not a womb” and “I’m not ovary-acting.” Those signs were also meant to disturb the peace. There is enough unrestrained sex going on that surprise babies are continually disturbing the peace; God’s art is apparently not the important kind that Madonna was talking about. Something has to give, so it is abortion that continues to be the sexual revolution’s pressure release valve.
Sex receives inordinate encouragement from our cultural, political, and media elites. Media red-carpet coverage captures enough uncovered skin to give moms a glimpse of how the battle will shape up over their daughters’ prom dresses. I don’t see much hope for a return to the much-maligned, “archaic” morals of the past -- the 1950s, Ozzie and Harriet years as they were once called. Thanks to the creep (pun intended) of progressive cultural modernity, we witness graphic-sex education pushed on our children and, frankly, too many similar battlefronts needing coordinated counteroffensives.
It is my hope we can steel ourselves and defend the recent and coming generations from the cultural acid of degenerative sexual casualness. Sex may seem casual, but it seldom is. Why else even contemplate a stealthing law?
Spruce Fontaine is an artist and retired college art instructor.
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