Let’s talk about sex (and women and the media)

Just ’cause I feel like it, I thought I’d respond to much of today’s “important news” — the stuff featured on the headlines of AOL.

Let’s see: 1) How not to make 5 Bikini wax mistakes, 2)Jennifer Anniston’s jealous of whose body?, 3) a Country singer comes out as a lesbian, 4) Lynn Redgrave dies an early death of breast cancer, 5) Lindsay Lohan to play “Deep Throat” actress.

Out of — what? — 15 to 20 headlines– 5 are about women and their bodies?  1/4 to 1/3 of the most important things in life are women’s bodies? Contrary to popular opinion, I don’t think about sex every six seconds. Maybe I’m just getting too old, but I don’t think so.  Since my days at Deering and our “men’s lib” and “women’s lib” workshops (at age 14 or 15!), I have thought of women as people first, then bodies.  Not that I don’t like women’s bodies, but by college I figured out that you had to get out of bed sometime, and it would be important to like who she was when that happened.  In the old, old days, that would have made me a feminist.  Then, shortly after, I was told that I couldn’t be because I wasn’t a woman. Nowadays, even women don’t claim to be feminists.  Who knew?

In any case, whether I have the right to or not, I have opinions about women and their bodies and sex — or at least the AOL stories I listed before.

The only one I *really* care about is Lynn Redgrave’s death.  She was a great actress with a great range of parts and her family had a kind of politics that I like.   Breast cancer must suck, because all kinds of cancer suck. In case it matters to anyone — a woman without breasts is just that — a woman without breasts. She doesn’t stop being a woman.  She just stops having breasts, just as much as when Lance Armstrong had testicular cancer, he didn’t stop being a man.  He dated Cheryl Crow for sometime after that, so he wasn’t doing all that bad, plus he apparently is still one of the best bicyclists in the world. He had a life outside of his  testicles, just as Redgrave had a life outside of her breasts.  Anybody who thinks women aren’t anything without breasts is sadly mistaken.  They’re still somebody, but they’ve suffered alot now. This is not to say that the women can’t feel bad about the loss. They can, I suppose. I just don’t want them to do it because they think that’s all they are is breasts/sex objects.  Hmmm… I wonder where they might get that impression.

Next most important, I suppose, is the lesbian country singer.  Symbolically, it’s a BIG deal. In real life, it shouldn’t be.  Apparently people in the South are sometimes gay.  Just like Charlie Pride proved that people who listen to country music are Black, apparently some are gay, too. Oh, well.  Like an Open-and-Affirming church, she’ll lose some support and she’ll gain some support from coming out.  I guess my only concern is that she not do a video which seems to be about orgies, as Melissa Ethridge did with “Dirty Little Secret”.  “Come to My Window” was great and empowering, just like last year’s re-make of Tom Petty’s “Refugee”.   Oh, Baby, you don’t have to live like a refugee! I hope this country singer doesn’t have to, either.

Next, what’s up with the bikini line controversy? I’m pretty sure women have pubic hair.   If they don’t want anyone to know they do, let them wear bathing suits that fit or just tuck it in. Thongs aren’t for everyone. I don’t anyone to be in pain just so she can attract me.  Then again, I don’t want to see men in thongs or anyone with a tattoo or piercings.  I just don’t like pain, and I’m uncomfortable with mixing love or attraction and pain.

That leaves me with Jennifer Anniston’s body and Lindsay Lohan’s trainwreck.  Ms. Anniston wants to put herself in pain by working out harder, and Lohan apparently wants to kill herself for whatever reasons (and she is/was a lesbian! — a two-for-one bonus of women self-destructing! No wonder she makes the news!).

Can’t we just let women live, and like themselves — just as they are? Wouldn’t that be nice? Aren’t they people, too?

Oh, baby, you don’t… have…to live like a refugee! (Don’t have to live like a refugee…)




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