Friday, September 21, 2012

The Dream of Sexual Equality

A few years ago I picked up the novel Sexual Healing by Jill Nelson.   Two black women n their 40s decide they are going to secretly open a brothel spa strictly for black women, to indulge in all their carnal pleasures.  The idea comes to them as they fantasize about the perfect man and lament about their relationships.  One is in a relationship with a two-minute brother and the other has had a series of bad luck with men. It is hilarious when these two unlikely pimps start auditioning and interviewing the men to work at the brothel.  The employment application alone is worth a read.  A conservative preacher discovers their new business and tries to shut them down.

In the real world we know men have many avenues to satisfy their sexual urges. Brothels, massage parlors, and strip clubs can be found all across the country. (Where I live, they have 24 hour strip clubs.) I can't  forget to mention those trips to the Dominican Republic, Thailand and Brazil, but that's another story. I don't know if a brothel for women actually exists.  I am pretty sure there isn't one that caters to black women allowing them to pay for uninhibited toe-curling sex. Imagine if a woman dares to admit that she doesn't want to have a relationship with a man, she only wants to fuck.  In our society if a woman has a healthy sexual appetite she risks the possibility of being labeled a "ho" or a "slut".

I had a discussion with a young man about a very attractive woman in her thirties who had been known for dating several men over the years.  If a relationship did not work out she was on to the next with a quickness.  Well he slipped up and called her a "ho".  I was offended. "So just because she has decided she is not going limit herself to one man she is a ho"? I asked.  He got defensive. "She has been with way too many men", he insisted.  "What is too many, ten, twenty, thirty"? The conversation got heated and neither of us would budge.

We have come a long way from the Victorian era when a woman was expected to only have sex with one man, her husband.  A man on the other hand could fornicate with whomever he wanted to and he was just being that, a man. The struggle for women's equality is far from over.  Women are taking charge of their sexuality and making no excuses for it. The days of letting society dictate what we do in the bedroom, or any other room, is behind us.  We are in control of our bodies and have the right to enjoy our sex lives as we see fit. But as long as words like slut, ho, and skank are used to describe a sexually liberated woman we have quite a way to go.

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