One of my friends on Facebook (and I suppose I use that term loosely, since it is someone who I used to go to college w/ and who recently just randomly “friended” me) had her status as “was NOT happy to wake up to find the Deja Vu van parked outside”. Pursuant to that were a number of responses from her friends w/ their quippy one-liners about the night club’s van being outside. She responded to these by saying that she hoped she didn’t have a fight on her hands, b/c there are three homes for sale on her street and was worried about what people would think. The last line I saw was someone saying “maybe a pervert will buy a house!”.
I forget how sheltering my online community can be for me, the tolerance and the safe spaces we attempt to create (although not always successfully) and the way we strive daily to show that all bodies matter. I forget how quickly some people are to judge a person as being the sum of their job, and that some work can be dismissed as unworthy of respect.
Calling someone a pervert for going to a night club is a judgement that is not yours to make. Consensual adults participating in things they enjoy w/ people who are also consenting adults is no body’s business but their own. The work a dancer does is no less valid than the work a server or bartender does, and often it is a way to keep the bills paid and to provide.
Calling someone a pervert for going to a night club is also a way of othering the people (mostly women) who work at these clubs. It makes it easy for us to dismiss them as somehow subhuman, and paves the way for horrific crimes to take place against them. It’s a subtle way of privileging one body over another, and it’s disgusting.
While I consider myself to be someone of the mind of “pro-sex“, I don’t like to lay labels to the sentiment, b/c it seems to draw a line to insinuate that people who don’t feel the same way as I do are somehow anti-sex. It’s more othering where such divides don’t need to be made. I do, however, get my hackles raised when I see someone shaming another person for the audacity of enjoying sex, or for having the gall to make a living. They aren’t hurting you, they aren’t knocking on your door and demanding that you have sex w/ them right now or forcing you to watch them perform.
Being pro-choice pretty much sums up all of my feelings on most things. Anything that takes away someone’s humanity or choices or agency and places limits on them based on the moral codes of the few isn’t helping. Being pro-choice means defending someone’s right to make a choice, whether it be about their body, their job, their chosen loved one, even if we find those choices to be personally icky (FTR, I do not find being a sex worker, or respectfully enjoying such things to be icky). When we allow our personal morals to limit the choices of others or to needlessly shame them we are taking huge steps backward.
Guess that wasn’t such a quick rant…