I read a couple things online that claim the #metoo movement is leading to a Sex Panic. Apart from noting that Sex Panic would make a terrific all female, riot grrrl punk band, I found this observation to be a bit trite.
I have written earlier that the #metoo movement is spurring a kind of cultural depression. These revelations are nauseating, disheartening, and shocking. Of course people are going to be sad to learn that their favorite chefs, comedians and movie makers were diddling women (and, let’s be honest, this isn’t even the worst of it) without consent. As someone who has suffered from depression, let me tell you: no, being depressed is not very sexy and it in fact lowers the libido.
A wave of cultural depression is not the equivalent of a sex panic. By using the term “sex panic,” detractors of the #metoo movement are saying that they fear that this movement will lead to a very Christian, “Handmaiden’s Tale”-esque rite of sexuality. (I read that on a comment thread on Facebook last week. Which is why I deleted Facebook for a month.) A cultural pause of sexual frivolity is not the same on a cultural shift to the modes and expression of sex.
The #metoo movement is in fact not a sex negative movement. It’s not being lead by feminists whose ultimate goal is to eliminate, regulate or socially stigmatize healthy sexuality.
I know this because me and my friends are down with the #metoo movement, which, sure, the movement has its flaws. But if you know me and my friends, you know we are not the prudes that everyone thinks we are – we’re a bunch of sexually liberated, young women; some of us are sex workers, some of us are trans people, some of us are kinksters, some of us are into traditional relationships, some of us are down for polyamory, all of us want our power back. Really, it’s ironic that people are accusing this movement of being sex negative. I was called a slut as recently as last month. And this month I’m participating in something that polices overall cultural sexuality? Jesus, make up your mind, Internet. Am I slut who wants to fuck everyone or am I trying to castrate every man I know?
Glaring inconsistencies aside, it’s worth noting that the #metoo movement isn’t about policing sexuality. It’s about dismantling the toxic power dynamic that currently has a choke hold over our society’s approach to and experience of sex.
When I see people online complaining that the #metoo movement is igniting a sex panic, all I can really think is: if you’re worried about getting laid now that rapists and creeps are getting called out, is it because the only way you could get laid was by raping and creeping on people? Yuck. This made me realize: people who think that the #metoo movement is going to cause a sex panic are probably just the same boring, basic people who think that women don’t have orgasms, or that women don’t like sex, or that you have to get a woman to say no three times to prove that she really means it. These are the guys (and pardon the heteronormative language here, I’m just using it to illustrate the common power dynamic) that have zero game, who have to get a woman incoherently drunk before they can fuck, and who no one wanted to fuck in the first place.
Hm. Maybe they should be panicked. A fair and equitable sexual landscape would mean that they would be consistently rejected and unable to resort to things like assaulting people in order to get laid.
I say: let them panic. Today is the day they find out that no one wants to fuck them. You know what that means – time to start paying sex workers the money they are due in order to scratch your itches. Stop putting the burden of getting laid on women who have no interest in fucking for free. If you want to get laid, cough up that money. And tip her, too, okay?