Friday, 5 September 2008

I've kissed a girl too, so what?

I see that the male members of the blogosphere have been quick to ridicule the Family Party's drive by morality on a radio stations girl-on-girl kiss contest.

I'm not sure what's more bizzare, the Family Party's opposition or the fact that so many straight men have been quick to defend a woman's right to engage in a PDA with a fellow XXer. Because like many members of generation X, I've forayed into the arena of women-on-women action and while women tend to be softer and smell nice, I found the whole thing a bit weird and uncomfortable and thus decided that same-sex attraction just wasn't for me. However I'm ashamed to admit that I've been known on occasion to engage in faux displays of lesbian attraction on the dance floor back in my youth which in my experience is the surest way to attract male attention outside of a jelly wrestling competition.

When I've pressed my straight male friends about why the idea of two women kissing is such a turn on, the blood seems to drain from their face and the only coherent answer I got on the matter 'it's women and it's naked.'

But I can't help feeling that they wouldn't be so welcoming of public same-sex snogging if the two participants were guys.



stephen said...

I think the underlying premise for the male viewer's attitude to ANY snogging couple is that there is the possibility he may be invited to join in.

Assuming the male viewer is straight and a little homophobic as per NZ norms, this then means:

MF couple: kinky but if I can have sex with the F half while the M half watches, why not?
FF couple: hot. Unless you are REAL lesbians, killing my fantasy of joining in, in which case I will suddenly viciously turn on you.

Hugh said...

I've often mused on this. My favourite theory, not necessarily for its truthfulness but for its cuteness, is as follows:

The average straight man sees lesbian sex as not 'real' sex, because it doesn't involve penetration. Thus, it's akin to masturbation, so it's like watching a woman masturbate - except twice as hot, because there's two of them!

As far as I can tell, although I've not done major research on this, the phenomenon of straight men liking to watch women having sex seems relatively recent, and confined to the West.

It should also be pointed out that the group of women aroused by gay male sex is, while probably smaller, not insignificant; and the subculture of straight men who pash with their straight friends to attract straight female attention is equally obnoxious - moreso, in fact, because they think they're something being subversive.

Idiot/Savant said...

I was thinking based on their press release, with its complaints about how this was promiscuity, which "is already a huge problem amongst our teenagers, leading to increased abortion rates", that they needed a biology lesson. Thinking that kissing (let alone same-sex kissing) causes pregnancy is so 1950's...

The ex-expat said...

I/S I still don't get how lesbianism causes teen pregnancy either. Actually it would be the most effective form of sex for avoiding that problem altogether.

Anna McM said...

I'm also interested that they think same-sex kissing causes 'sexual crimes'. What the hell?

Ben R said...

"The average straight man sees l8sbian s*x as not 'real' s*x, because it doesn't involve pen*tration. Thus, it's akin to m8sturbation,"

I think this sounds right. Also, (in evolutionary terms) you don't have the jealousy factor because another female isn't going to impregnate a potential mate.

Carol said...

I thought there was a dynamic that involves playing on a fear in many het males of female collusion and exclusion, while also providing an exciting and voyeuristic challenge, with the strong incentive of eventually reasserting male (hetero)sexual dominance.

Hugh said...

there was a dynamic that involves playing on a fear in many het males of female collusion and exclusion

That hadn't occurred to me Carol but it sounds very likely.

stargazer said...

the one that really bothers me about this is that it's still all about the male gaze, all about women performing for men.

Trouble said...

I agree with stargazer, you're setting aside your own snogging preferences with the aim of impressing others. Attention's just another currency - it's metaphorical dollar bills tucked into the gstring.

Snogging can be a statement - look how hot I am doing this transgressive thing; look how in love we are; look how cool it is that I can snog the person I love despite widespread social disapproval. Anyone publicly snogging is to a degree doing a bit of attention seeking, unless they're so toasted they're oblivious to the presence of others. Public snogging is socially disturbing because it provokes a strong reaction in witnesses - they either feel grossed out or left out. If men are heavily socialised into seeing other men as repulsive, the absence of a man from a snog is only going to be a good thing from their point of view.

weka said...

I still don't get how lesbianism causes teen pregnancy either.

I don't think the radio station wants real lesbians turning up though. They want het women who are still available to men but who are willing to put on a show.

Anna McM said...

Hey Ben - what do you think of criticisms of sociobiology (leveled by feminists and others) that the idea of sexual jealousy provides a mitigating factor for rape?

muerk said...

Let's face it, this was not a competition celebrating women, it was about a radio station boosting ratings and getting publicity by getting young women kissing in public while young men watched and while journalists took photos.

The Family Party's point was that treating women like this publicly lowers standards of "decency". And this in turn encourages promiscuity in young people.

Frankly they have a point.

The Boobs on Bikes and the competition both use women as objects to arouse male desire. Neither business promotion actually treats women as people to be respected. It makes women into pretty show pieces for male titillation.

Young girls are going to see this as a legitimate way to court male attention. If you want to get a guy interested, then make out with your friends in front of him.

Acting like a porn star is not IMHO the best way to form a healthy relationship between two equal people. Yet this is the message that these kids of promotions send.

Promiscuity isn't healthy for people. It objectively raises the likelihood of STIs, pregnancy, and emotional hurt.

muerk said...

Er, make that "kinds of promotions" not "kids of promotions".


barvasfiend said...

14 comments about a radio station rambling on about some puerile twaddle from the Family Fist Party (sic). If radio stations persist in the enabling vacuous twits airtime then they can do it without me. I'll get my non stop cock blocking rockin block of cock rock elsewhere.

The more attention these non-issues get, the more the opportunity and openings for negativity.

Some people are gay. And sometimes boys like to watch girls kiss. And sometimes girls like to kiss each other. It shouldn't be a showstopper anymore. The more we stare at it, the more it encourages them...'Don't stare at the fascists, darling...'

Trix said...

I think it's simple. Seeing quasi-sexual activity is a turn-on (if you like watching PDAs - I don't), two cute nubile things is twice as good as one, and you don't have to edit out another male as participant while vicariously inserting yourself in the middle.

That being said, I'm a 98% dyke and I prefer watching gay (male) porn. I don't want to insert myself in the middle - and I more strongly do not want to watch some chick with fake tits and fake nails faking it.