Saturday, 25 August 2007

Interesting Posts

Feministing has an interesting post up on the "Christian Domestic Discipline" types here:
This is billed as completely consensual, with it made clear that "the husband has authority to spank the wife. The wife does not have authority to spank her husband." The site was created by wife-spankers who were sick of stumbling upon porn when they searched for other like-minded folks online. Lest you become confused that the CDD site is a BDSM site with a Christian spin, they're sure to reiterate that this is about adhering to Biblical gender roles -- not about sexual pleasure. Unless you get off on asserting your patriarchy by slapping your property wife. Not an unheard-of phenomenon, as the site acknowledges
Could be just that I'm in an odd mood, but I'm less angry right now and more blackly amused by their "we're not SSC wait yes we are wait no RTFB!" take on consent issues:

But what if sometimes your wife doesn't want to be spanked? Well, let's not use an inconvenient phrase like "domestic violence" or "spousal abuse." Nah, "non-consensual CDD" would be more appropriate, really. And the site basically says that it's a man's god-given right to hit his wife, even if those pesky laws against domestic violence get in the way.

Non-consensual CDD:

Though we believe the Bible gives a husband the authority to use spanking as one tool in enforcing his authority in the home with or without his wife's permission, in today's world we recognize the legality that mandates that all CDD must be consensual. Therefore we will do not condone nonconsensual CDD as a rule.

How progressive of them!

Somehow I don't think "just because you can doesn't mean you should" quite applies. But that might just be my "rabid feminism" talking. Ooof.

Anyway, I'll try to resist further snarking. On to my point:

How concerned should feminists really be about this? Should pro-SM feminists specifically be more concerned about this than anyone else?

I've pretty much written these people off as an example of the wonders of the internet: No matter what it might be, however weird or vile, there is at least one internet group devoted to it and how cool it is.

Is this stuff worth any more attention than that, do you think?

31 comments:

Zonk said...

For non bdsm'rs this is the strawman that will be used ad naseum to show that people will consent to things that they don't "really" want to consent to.

The more distance that regular bdsm'ers can put between themselves and these people, the better.

Trinity said...

Oh, yeah, I agree. It's just that when this blog was started there was some noise about analyzing sexism in the scene and some people like this got mentioned. And... eh. Right now I'm feeling like I couldn't give less of a fuck that these idiots exist.

Dw3t-Hthr said...

Honestly, I'd be concerned about treating them with any particular relevance. My experience with other community activism is that frequently making a big deal about how We are not like THEM comes across as completely insincere.

In the 'What are they hiding?' sense. Or 'Methinks the lady doth protest too much.'

Seriously, a habit of crying out "We're not Mormon schismatic patriarchal polygynists!" (to pick a close comparison) has done the polyamorous community no good whatsoever. "We're not Bible-spankers" won't do the kink community any favors either.

Sierra said...

From a female dominant’s point of view a site like that doesn’t matter because there isn’t a place for a woman like me in such a community.

What concerns me is what this could lead certain submissive women into. Take a submissive woman who has had bad experiences with other dominants in our lifestyle, or one who has been without a dominant for a great length of time, and they could easily go for something of this nature, especially if they read over the material quickly and see only what they want to see and not what it actually is.

I think a female submissive could windup in serious trouble emotionally and physically by a community such/like CDD.

But that is only my opinion

SnowdropExplodes said...

I think it's the sort of thing we can ignore safely - if somebody comes back to us with this sort of thing, then we can be equally dismissive - "Well, BDSMers tend to think of that sort of people as being a bit weird, really" sort of thing. But it's not something we need to make any noise about ourselves.

If pressed on why we think they're weird, something pithy about them letting a rule book get in the way of having a good time or something, seems appropriate. Basically, pointing out that BDSM isn't about an ideology dictating what people should do (which CDD clearly is), and emphasising that BDSM is something that people generally do because they enjoy it, not because anybody tells them to.

But in general, I say ignore them.

Trinity said...

"My experience with other community activism is that frequently making a big deal about how We are not like THEM comes across as completely insincere."

Yeah, because then it becomes "well, why don't you get them shut down, ig you're so not them?"

which means y'know completely ignoring the nature of the internet and that any creep has a webpage and there's not much, usually, that can be done.

Trinity said...

"I think a female submissive could windup in serious trouble emotionally and physically by a community such/like CDD."

Actually the very first BDSM website I found as a teen was a Christian D/s website rather like that one. (I found it on an atheist board; someone had posted it as an example of how crazy religious people are.)

I eagerly read it simply because I'd never actually heard from bottoms that they like it -- that this stuff does in fact feel GOOD to people. I thought that was just my sadistic little mind making things up and it was amazing to read women say they loved to be spanked and tied up and dragged into the bedroom by the hair and all. It was my first clue that this stuff could be REAL.

But I also was quite aware that they were wackjobs. I had it backwards. I was weird if my fantasies were like the men's. What was I, one of those scary ol' FEMINISTS?! (yes, but Point Missed there, bud.) I was frequently quoted at with the "women, keep silent in church" quotes, usually by the other women actually.

So eh... yeah, I think some people can get caught up in this. But I also don't think that just because BDSM is fascinating, people lack use of critical reasoning. I didn't. I took what I wanted (the idea that BDSM could be an enriching part of a relationship, some knowledge of technique) and ignored the rest.

Lindsay1984 said...

What's always bothered me about the CDD folks is the way they substitute biblical interpretation for scene negotiation. Oh, you're not into anal? Well, the Bible says differently. Your limits were preordained by God, and you wouldn't go against God, would you?

Sidenote: I met some of these weirdos, who naturally assumed that I was a "good Christian woman" because I like getting the crap beat out of me in bed. Yeesh.

Dw3t-Hthr said...

Yeah, because then it becomes "well, why don't you get them shut down, ig you're so not them?"

I actually more often run into "where there's smoke, there's fire": "I wasn't going to mention that group over there, but since the people I'm talking to seem to think there's some sort of relationship to be seen there that's important enough to be proactively denied ..."

If the CDD have nothing to do with one's kink, then talking about how they have nothing to do with one's kink is ... I don't spend a lot of time talking about how my kink has nothing to do with marshmallows or tulips or any of a bunch of other things, and people know that. So if there's enough of a connection to deny, then one's lending credence to the notion that they're the same thing, or close enough to be put in the same box. If it's unrelated, don't relate it; I think this is basic political awareness and maneuvering.

If the CDD are being taken as kinky people who are doing it badly (whether because there's a rulebook rather than consent negotiation, or because folks think they should have the gonads to be kinky without cloaking it in this other stuff, or whatever else), then an appropriate response as far as I'm concerned is what Snowdrop says, something like, "Oh, yeah, we tend to think those people are a little weird, because X." And bringing them up on their own makes them seem important somehow, as if their thing is significant enough to need to be refuted.

I fall somewhere between these two in my feelings on them -- I suspect that what it boils down to is "a way to be kinky without having to admit to being kinky", and is pretty much irrelevant to anything I do. So I'm not going to bring it up and lend it authority by doing so, and if someone brings it up to me I'll dismiss it as irrelevant with a quick note on why.

Numi said...

Bit late, but this video basically has my reaction to that whole fucked up thing. The song is in Swedish, but I think the general idea carries over internationally.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CtpLvfnDKtI

Trinity said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ellefromtheeast said...

What I found heartening was that most of the comments on feministing seemed to understand the distinction between BDSM and CDD.

For example:

"I guess the main thing for me is that the site treats the laws view of "non-consensual CDD" or "wife-beating" as an unwanted burden; ever present, and not something to openly criticize. In contrast, most BDSM websites will have a section all about the difference between pain and harm, and consensual spankings and abuse." - Bunny

Or a different poster:

"People comparing this to BDSM are missing the point. There is no safe word. There are no protections for the woman at all because this is coming from the position that she is inherently inferior and needs correcting. - Roni

I'm deliberately only quoting from commenters who don't identify themselves as kinky to indicate that most mainstream feminists get the most important distinctions that members of the BDSM community would make.

I do think we need to be concerned about CDD as feminists. We need to be concerned about exit options for the women if/when it spills over into abuse, because it has no safewords, and it's embedded in communities that make it very difficult for women to leave these marriages. We also need to think about ways to show other models to the children being raised in these families without intruding on people's right to form their familes as they see fit.

But in terms of defending our kink, going by the comments, we've done a pretty good job already.

Trinity said...

"I do think we need to be concerned about CDD as feminists. We need to be concerned about exit options for the women if/when it spills over into abuse, because it has no safewords, and it's embedded in communities that make it very difficult for women to leave these marriages."

How do we, as feminists, help with this, though?

ellefromtheeast said...

I think we help in the same ways we help other victims of domestic violence - by supporting shelters, by advocating for laws that put teeth in restraining orders.

I've been wondering lately what would happen to a leather title contestant who made domestic violence their title issue and a shelter their main fundraising charity.

maymay said...

In my experience, I've found that being enraged at an absurd thing is not always helpful. In other words, it's good to measure one's response to the actual threat level of a thing, as Dw3t-Hthr said similarly in an earlier comment.

This CDD stuff, while clearly dumb and not a good thing for feminists or BDSM'ers in general, is something that is pretty easily distanced from BDSM simply by playing the sex card. I mean, they already played it for us: CDD isn't about sex. Well, BDSM is. There's the difference.

Kramnik said...

Eh. There is plenty of domestic discipline that is femdom. (Perhaps even more.) It is Biblically justified, too. I am not surprised Feministing found the one, but not the other, without even bothering to analyze which is more popular.

ellefromtheeast said...

kramnik - Provide links, please?

Carpenter said...

Dan Savage had a link to this on his blog a few months ago.

Trinity said...

"I mean, they already played it for us: CDD isn't about sex. Well, BDSM is. There's the difference."

Thing is though occasionally people.. are odd. Like, one of the guys I dated was big into the spanko scene. Y'know the people who insist spanking is NOT "S&M" and get all kerfuffled at the idea. So he was open to trying both and met me and we hit it off.

And we're having dinner, discussina a future playdate, and he goes

"Um, I have something to ask... will you take it as disrespectful if I get hard when you paddle me? I'm not sure I can control it."

And I'm y'know

O.o

and "If you get hard from beatings I'll take it as a sign I'm DOING IT WRONG (hi, ED!) if you're not hard..."

and he's like wow I won the lottery "...you don't think that's objectifying and creepy? OMG YAY OMG YAY."

because some of those femdom DD things ascribe to some wack gender essentialism: men want BDSM sex (which isn't about submitting), women want loving submission which is about anything but sex, especially nothing so vulgar as an ERECT AND THROBBING PHALLUS! *titter*

but, well... that dude wasn't from my scene. and I left him to his right quick.

HELLO MOON FRIEND. HOW IS YOUR BDSM ON THE MOON! WE SHALL HAVE A MOON-VERSATION.

EthylBenzene said...

"What's always bothered me about the CDD folks is the way they substitute biblical interpretation for scene negotiation. Oh, you're not into anal? Well, the Bible says differently. Your limits were preordained by God, and you wouldn't go against God, would you?"

Oooh, yeah, this is a very good summary of why I get really icked out and worried about CDD. It's not consentual, period. I don't feel like these women are neccessarily in a position to willingly give up consent in the long term, and I'm pretty sure they never had a chance to pre-negotiate limits.

But of course, this feeling of "ew NO" goes against my good little liberal self, which wants to "live and let live," because clearly these people think this is a good thing for them. But Dawkins makes a good point in TGD, which is - would they make the same decision if they had proper access to all available alternatives? That is, would they willingly get into this messy, potentially abusive, potentially non-con situation if they knew they could have kinky spanky fun with consent? It's an important question to ask I think.

Dw3t-Hthr said...

Which is sort of the other half of the thing I said earlier, I think.

I think one of the things that *can* help people in that sort of situation is the knowledge that they can get their "kinky spanky fun" elsewhere, without also taking on those rules.

I think a lot of questionable stuff comes in when the situation is, "This is the only way we know of to get what we want, so even if all this other stuff is awful, it needs to be there, because that's the way."

More ways that are known -- and here's the critical part -- believed in -- make a difference. And I suspect the big problem is the 'believed in', because I suspect a lot of these folks are aware of the existence of kinksters, but are quite sure that we are Nothing Like Them. Not Christian, not married, not whatever is important.

Trinity said...

"I think one of the things that *can* help people in that sort of situation is the knowledge that they can get their "kinky spanky fun" elsewhere, without also taking on those rules.

I think a lot of questionable stuff comes in when the situation is, "This is the only way we know of to get what we want, so even if all this other stuff is awful, it needs to be there, because that's the way.""

Yes. Which is -- to make reference to the recent drive-by commenting on another thread here -- why being against BDSM is entirely backwards. All it would do was ensure the femsubs who want maledoms go after these sorts of conservatives, because they'd be the only people left.

EthylBenzene said...

Dw3t said:
"More ways that are known -- and here's the critical part -- believed in -- make a difference. And I suspect the big problem is the 'believed in', because I suspect a lot of these folks are aware of the existence of kinksters, but are quite sure that we are Nothing Like Them. Not Christian, not married, not whatever is important. "

Yeah, definitely. We're not disagreeing, I think. It's all about more education, being more visible, and getting people to realize that there are as many ways to be kinky as there are people. I think the cliqueishness (sp?) and "twooo dom/sub" crap that goes on winds up scaring a lot of people away who could benefit from a healthy understanding of how to get what they want. Or just even an understand of what it is they want. I feel like there needs to be a move towards less judgement by everyone so that more people can safely get what they need.

I mean, I came across this quote the other day clicking around the interwebs:
"Some even have "safe words," they can use to pull the plug on a "scene" if it gets too - I dunno. Intense? Demanding? Whatever? Safewords. I kid you not. Kind of like a veto power over what is happening that pretty much cancels any illusion some dumb soul has about being dominant.

I don't play at D/s. I don't use "safewords." And fuck the bdsm mantra, "Safe, sane and consensual." It's just a simpering, forelock tugging attempt to convince the vanilla folk that bdsm players are really just like them - it's just a game, see, and we aren't really serious, we're just playing dress up."

I mean, yikes. Imagine you're just clicking around, trying to learn about this stuff, you run into this. How're we supposed to distance ourselves from this CDD crap when people who identify as "one of us" write such things? Oy. I dunno. Maybe I need more coffee to make more sense or something, but I'm just horrified that some lost submissive woman will find herself in an abusive situation because the silent majority of the "community" isn't speaking up and saying "um, no."

Trinity said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Trinity said...

I mean, yikes. Imagine you're just clicking around, trying to learn about this stuff, you run into this. How're we supposed to distance ourselves from this CDD crap when people who identify as "one of us" write such things? Oy. I dunno. Maybe I need more coffee to make more sense or something, but I'm just horrified that some lost submissive woman will find herself in an abusive situation because the silent majority of the "community" isn't speaking up and saying "um, no.""

YEAH, THAT.

When I first got into the Scene I read _Different Loving_. Thinking the book was great and usually presented as an intro text, I went looking for the authors' boards.

One was into "absolute power exchange" and said things like "the sub should never be permitted to leave, no matter if she wants to or not."

The other was passionate about safewords being counter to D/s. (To Dr. Brame's credit, she does say this is in part because if you're in an intense enough scene the bottom may be in a trance and go non-verbal, so the top can't invest totally in the idea that if she doesn't hear "red" everything's fine.)

I had friends and a community that worked very differently than all that, so I never believed all of it (I got into some arguments with them about safewords, I remember. Inw hich I came up with an analogy I still use today: Say I'm performing in a play. Does it become the audience's "performance" rather than mine if someone yells "Fire" and I stop performing as we all make our way to the exit?)

Dw3t-Hthr said...

And I notice that the random person who posted in the other thread threw out an, "Is it because they're Christians?" at this thread, which ... was done after I made that comment. I am deeply, darkly amused, in one of those, "Why yes, my cynicism is confirmed" ways.

Y'know, someone should probably start some safeword and SSC discussion threads. Maybe I'll do that. Because I was about to post something to the effect of, "You know, one thing I'd really like to see is serious talking about and taking apart these concepts and going into how they apply, where they apply, what they do and do not mean", and then I realised that I can start threads too. ;) We'll see if I get coherent before bedtime, or maybe I'll do one tomorrow.

EthylBenzene said...

"We'll see if I get coherent before bedtime, or maybe I'll do one tomorrow. "

Thank god I'm not a writer here... if we were gonna wait around until I was coherent, we'd be here till Christmas!

I think your ideas for threads are excellent, and I look forward to reading them!

Anonymous said...

Thank you all so much for the thoughts you've posted here. As a BDSM sub, I've had a really hard time figuring out how to respond to this discovery.

Anonymous said...

Lest youDiablo 3 cd key become confused that the CDD site is a BDSM site with a Christian spin, they're sure to reiterate cheap diablo 3 Goldthat this is about adhering to Biblical gender roles

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