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The Dark Heart of Homophobia

No podcast today, but there is this…

I’m riding the bus when we come to a stop near a local high school. Five teenage boys get on. They’re all jocks—football, probably. Their jackets are emblazoned with varsity letters and they appear to be fresh from practice. Each carries an oversized duffel.

They are boisterous and full of menacing bravado. The bus is immediately overwhelmed with a rush of testosterone. As they move toward the back of the bus, they purposely jostle everyone in their path. They’re rude and crude and every other word is fuck.

The bus lurches forward, and my fellow passengers instinctively know not to make eye contact. The older women clutch their belongings tight to their bosom. Everyone is tense.

The pack mentality emboldens the young men, who are flush with their newly discovered sense of male privilege. Hormones rage in their adolescent bodies, yet there is an awkward childishness about them too. They are alpha, but only in as much as they are part of a pack.

They have off-color comments for everyone around them. Girls are singled out for the most abuse. They make insinuations about their sexual prowess, while pawing at their groins. The women blush with embarrassment.

Despite being loud, obnoxious and brutish, they lack conviction. They giggle too much, indicating self-consciousness. It’s apparent that, at their core, they are still very uneasy about themselves, and have yet to grow into and own the alpha maleness they mimic.

The bus approaches the next stop, and several of us get up to exit. A nerdy boy with glasses and a violin case accidentally trips over one of the teen’s duffel bags. This is the spark. The jocks erupt, lunging at the offending kid. He is easy prey. He’s petrified, but his survival instincts kick in, and he quickly maneuvers further up the aisle. I grab his shoulder and push him toward the door ahead of me. He makes his escape.

Now I’m in the line of fire. The rear door is only a couple steps away, but I stand my ground. The jocks size me up. I’m not an easy mark; I’m older and more dominant than any of them as individuals, but they trump me as a group. I may even be dangerous. In a split-second, the teens reevaluate the situation and instead of coming at me, they try to take me down with their best verbal shot: “You motherfucking fag!”

I move to the door. This could end very badly for me, but I will not show any weakness. Adrenaline courses through my bloodstream. I alight from the bus, holding the door open so I can briefly yell back. “Hey, thanks for the recognition. Oh, and for your information, its father-fucking, brother-fucking and/or son-fucking fag, never mother-fucking. Get it?”

By the time the jocks realize what’s happened, the bus is in motion, and I am safe.

The teens thought better of physically attacking me, so they did the next best thing. It’s what most threatened males do: they tried to diminish the threat by calling into question my masculinity.  And they do it in that time-honored way—by inferring I was a defective male, a queer, and a sissy. Trouble is, I am queer, and I owned it—right in their faces. On top of that, I stood up to them and even had the temerity to publicly shame them. So that had to be unsettling to them on several levels.

How did the derogatory epithet fag become the quintessential means of destroying the male ego? Why has the only somewhat less offensive slur, “that’s so gay,” become emblematic for everything stupid, negative or girly? These questions get to the root of our culture’s deeply ingrained homophobia.

I contend that homophobia is rooted in a fear and hatred of women. It’s no accident that when we want to denigrate a man we call him a pussy—the same word we use to refer to female genitals. In our culture, men are superior to women—it’s the oily by-product of male privilege. A man who falls short of this lofty ideal, or, god forbid, assumes a passive role in sex, cheapens the “privilege” for all other males. This is a particularly sensitive issue for ostensibly heterosexual men.

This prohibition is so deep-seated in our culture, one can trace its roots back to the Bible. Leviticus 20:13: “If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death.” In biblical days, women were nothing more than chattel. For a man to behave like a woman—particularly in a passive, receptive sexual way—back then was an even greater insult to the male privilege than it is nowadays (which explains the whole capital punishment thing.)

Women are also objectified as sexual objects before men dominate them. A woman is not so much a person as she is a collection of parts—tits, pussy, ass, etc. A heterosexual man, familiar with and practiced in this dynamic, will not tolerate another male objectifying him as a sexual object, either real or imagined.

These cultural triggers are exceptionally easy to trip. With very little effort at all, we can debase a man simply by suggesting that there’s a whiff of the feminine about him. In turn, the slandered male is burdened with proving the contrary, which often leads to overcompensation. To deflect suspicion, some men affect a macho bravado so as to appear even more masculine than their peers. And how better to do that than to suggest someone else is a pansy?

I can say for certain that all those boys on the bus had been, at one time or another, accused of being a fag. It’s exceedingly common in sports for even teammates to insinuate a fellow athlete is not performing up to expectations. Each of them must have known the sting of that reproach. Some may even have had self-doubt about their own sexual tendencies. That’s why they hurled at me what they knew would hurt any other self-respecting male the most.

What they didn’t count on was that I had, long ago, inoculated myself against this poison. I own, even revel, in my queer sexuality. An insult doesn’t work if the one insulted self-identifies as the slur.

Institutionalized homophobia, on the other hand, is more insidious. The dominant culture enshrines male privilege and, like the boys on the bus, punishes anyone who attempts to undercut the paradigm. Discrimination is so widespread, ingrained—and sometimes so subtle—that many non-gay people don’t even notice most of it. But those of us on the receiving end of the bigotry are keenly aware.

It’s a particularly acute problem for young people who know they are different, and different in a way that isn’t tolerated of by the dominant culture. They are much more vulnerable because they have yet to developed the emotional resources to counteract the oppression. They don’t yet realize that it’s society’s problem, not theirs. Their peers mercilessly persecute them. And for the most part, authority figures don’t even try to stop the torment. That’s why young gay people commit suicide at a rate of about seven times that of straight kids.

You may have noticed that I’ve framed this presentation in terms of the natural world. Dominant and submissive behaviors in other species often have sexual overtones, especially in other primate species. A dominant male will harass a male subordinate until he submits and presents his rump. This establishes a pecking order in the troupe: a subordinate male is submissive and the dominant male is in control.

Some straight men see gay men as a threat, instinctively fearing a supposed challenge to the established order of things; who is in control. It’s basically a struggle for dominance and troupe status. A gay person who is a productive member of society, who is indistinguishable from his heterosexual counterparts, ups the ante. He’s a threat to anyone who believes what he may have been told all his life—that gays are perverted, miserable, lonely people who live short, desperate lives.

Institutionalized homophobia impacts so many aspects of our culture. It may be obvious how it skews our notions of sex and sexuality, of who can do what to whom and when. But did you know that it is often an underlying cause of much male sexual dysfunction? It also contaminates national policy in terms of public health issues, military readiness and the rights and freedoms we afford our citizenry. The business sector also suffers. Harassment and intimidation of gay workers result in loss of productivity costing businesses millions every year. But the most tragic is the toll it takes on individual relationships. Families are torn apart, friendships end, and people sometimes are killed or kill themselves over a futile and misguided attempt to uphold the status quo.

Made To Order

Hey sex fans,

We feature a brand new toy company in today’s edition of Product Review Friday. Join me in welcoming Made To Pleasure, a brilliant boutique manufacturing house located in London. . We are delighted to have this truly unique company join us in our mission of bringing you news of innovation in the adult product marketplace. You will be hearing a lot more about Made To Pleasure in the coming weeks, because they sent us three different toys for review.

Today Dr Dick Review Crew members, Kevin & Gina are on hand to tell us about the first for these toys.

The Pearl —— £95.00

Gina & Kevin
Gina: “After the recent epic fail of one of our favorite vibes, (you can read about that HERE).  Kevin and I were so happy to turn our attention to a pleasure product that is stunningly elegant in its simplicity. We are elated to share with you the Pearl just one of the beautiful designs from the up and coming boutique toy company, Made To Pleasure.”
Kevin: “So true! The Made To Pleasure company got my attention immediately for the clever play on words that is their company name. But it also describes them to a tee. You see, you can actually design your own toy (made to order) or choose from the classic designs already created. You simply can’t get more accommodating than that.”
Gina: “I love the idea that anyone of us could design a unique toy for ourselves by simply using the design template on their site. I had fun just playing around with their design tool. Mmm, ‘design tool’, that sounds dirty!”
Kevin: “The Pearl also introduces us to a completely new material — acrylic (aka Lucite). We’ve not seen anything like this before. At first glance, one would guess the crystal-clear Pearl is glass. But it’s not. It shares a lot of the same properties as a quality glass pleasure product, but acrylic is lighter. And for the truly decadent among us, you can order a 99.9% pure gold and silver-plated design.”
Gina: “Yeah, wouldn’t that be spectacular! The Pearl comes in a stylish embossed black matte gift box. Inside the box you’ll find the Pearl wrapped, yet again, in black crêpe paper lying on a swath of black felt. It is tied in place with a satin ribbon. The presentation is dramatically chic; yet all of the packaging components are biodegradable. Very Nice; very smart!”
Kevin: “The Pearl also comes with a bullet vibe and three watch-sized batteries. You can use it apart from the Pearl, as a stand-alone clit vibe. Or you could attach it to the Pearl to make the whole dildo vibrate. We tried both methods. We attached the vibe to the Pearl using one of my silicone cockrings, although I suppose you could use a rubber band just as well!”
Gina: “Frankly, I found the bullet was a nuisance, both as a stand-alone vibe or attached to the dildo. There’s no need to gild this lily. I preferred to use the Pearl by its beautiful self. The gradually increasing (or decreasing) ridges provided me with all the sensations I needed. I say increasing or decreasing, because the Pearl is a double-header. You can use either end. And add to this the delightful feature that the Pearl can be chilled and warmed for added sensations; well I was in heaven. Oh, and you can use any sort of lube you’d like on this beauty.”
Kevin: “I’ve used the Pearl on myself too. So I have a bone to pick with the company’s mission statement. They write ’Made To Pleasure’s raison d’etre is simple – to bring the ultimate pleasure to women through toys that are beautiful to look at, and a pleasure to use.’ Really? Your toys are just for women? What are we, all the men out here, chopped liver? I mean, come on; why be so exclusive? Men have been using dildos for just as long as women have.”
Gina: “Yeah, why the exclucivity? I think it’s great that you are appealing primarily to women. Your site is lovely and sensual, but I agree with Kevin. In this day and age, do we really have to discriminate?”
Kevin: “After all the Pearl is made to be shared. Because it’s acrylic, it’s nonporous, phthalates-free, hypoallergenic and latex-free. There are no seams; it’s totally waterproof so it’s easily cleaned. Mild soap and warm water does just fine for everyday cleaning. You can also wipe it down with a lint-free towel moistened with peroxide, rubbing alcohol or a 10% bleach solution as I see fit.”
Gina: “However, unlike glass, you can’t toss the Pearl in the dishwasher or boil it. So be aware of that. But with proper care, it will last a lifetime.”
Full Review HERE!

ENJOY!

Mood Music

Hey sex fans!

We’re back with another edition of Product Review Friday. And today we have two toys to tell you about.

Here’s the husband and wife team, Dr Dick Review Crew member, Jack & Karen. Each has their own toy.

Our first product comes from our favorite retailer — Adult Sex Toys .com.

Mood Passionate —— $44.99

Karen
I’m here today with a vibe from that industry colossus, Doc Johnson.  It’s called Mood Passionate. I think it’s one of a line of vibes, called Mood, that they must have produced at some point, but I couldn’t find them on their website now. I don’t know what any of this means, but I thought I’d throw it out there anyhow.

I must say that I was pretty impressed with Mood Passionate. It has a load of very nice features, some of which you can only find in high-end vibes. And it retails for less than $50. That’s a lot of value!

The Mood Passionate is a stylized rabbit-type vibe that boasts a dual action vibration system. There’s one bullet in the shaft and one in the clit-stimulating finger. It also has 10 vibration functions. Just between you and me, I think 10 functions is overkill, but that’s just me.

I was also impressed with the strength of the vibrations and pulsations, especially since the vibe runs on just two AAA-batteries (not included in the package). However, I found that I needed to replace the batteries more frequently than I would if the Mood Passionate ran on bigger sized batteries. So there’s the trade-off.

The best thing about this vibe is that it’s waterproof. I mean really waterproof, not that ridiculous splash-proof baloney some toys crow about. The box claims the Mood Passionate, at least the business end of the thing, is made of food-grade silicone. However, I detected a slight odor when first opening the package. So that tells me that either the other materials used in the manufacture of the Mood Passionate are putting off the smell, or maybe this isn’t 100% silicone after all. All of us members of the Dr Dick Review Crew have become leery of many of the claims made by industry insiders.  I mean, how do we know for sure?
Full Review HERE!

Our second product comes to us directly from the manufacturer, Xmybox.
This is the second product we’ve reviewed for them.

Cherry On Top – Drop —— $29.95

Jack
What we have here is the Cherry On Top – Drop, one of three such toys.  It’s a cockring of sorts. I say that because it encircles your cock and balls, like a cockring ought to. But, because it’s made of this super elastic jelly material, it’s too stretchy to provide any of the constriction a guy expects from a regular cockring.

There is a nubbed barrel-like structure on either end of the ring into which we are supposed to load the cute green and pink bullet vibes. But first we’re supposed to load the bullets with three tiny watch batteries. Here in lies the rub. Despite the fact that the promotional materials on the company’s website say the six batteries (three per bullet) are included in the package. And indeed there are six little indentations in the plastic packaging. My toy arrived with only two of the six batteries.  The other four indentations were empty.

No I would have thought that maybe the other batteries got lost, or there was a glitch in the package assembly.  But get this, the package itself says that the batteries are NOT included.

So, which is it, Xmybox?

Full Review HERE!

ENJOY!

A Fall From Grace

Hey sex fans!

This is a first for us, The Dr Dick Review Crew. We are compelled to post these follow up comments for the once lauded Lussuria Rechargeable Vibrator by Vida.

Kevin and Gina, the couple that gave the Lussuria such a glowing review and insisted that it be among our top products of 2010  contacted me in mid January to say that their unit was malfunctioning. (See their original review HERE.)

Kevin and Gina went on to explain that, on three separate occasions, the Lussuria vibe turned itself on. They recounted the story of hearing this really weird sound; a sound unfamiliar to both of them. Their dog, Laddie, was also going nuts. Finally, they tracked down the sound only to discover the Lussuria had turned itself on inside their bedside drawer. It was making a very odd sound indeed; vibrating against the wood of the closed drawer.

Kevin and Gina had a laugh and thought nothing more of it. That is until it till it happened again and then again. The final time happened in the middle of the night and it scared the bejesus out of them both as well as their dog. They got so pissed off, this last time, that they wrapped the defective toy in a towel and hide it in the dark recesses of their garage. They basically just let the vibe depleted its charge.

The following week they brought the lifeless vibe to me and ask me if I could get them a replacement.

I immediately put out an SOS email to my contact at Topco Sales, the giant multinational corporation that owns the Vida brand. I waited a whole week for a response, but none came. The following week I called my contact at Topco Sales. I asked her if she got my email. She said she did. She said she was sorry to hear we were having problems and invited me to send back the toy for a replacement. I said, “fine!” She said she’d send me instructions on how to return the unit along with prepaid shipping. That never happened.

So, on top of having a very expensive, yet defective toy on our hands, {which we can only assume carries a fatal design flaw} we also get stiffed by the inattentive and dismissive Topco Sales people. That sucks, and not in a good way.

As a result, we’ve removed the Lussuria from our Best Products of 2010 list and added this warning to the original review. We advise our loyal followers to avoid the Lussuria like the plague. A truly monumental fall from grace!

The Dr Dick Review Crew and I can only conclude that this is what comes from a toy company that grow so huge that even a slew of bad press doesn’t effect them; a cautionary tale for all toy manufactures. And that, my friends, is a crying shame.

Sexual MYTHBUSTERS, Part 1 – The Big O

No podcast today, but there is this…

Angie is 20 and she’s having issues, lots of issues.

Hello, I would ask you a question that has been on my mind for a while. I seem to have a problem orgasming without stimulating my clitoris. I suppose that doesn’t really sound like a problem but it’s really starting to annoy me. I would like to be able to enjoy an orgasm without having to stimulate my clit every time! I love having sex and it feels super duper good but why can’t I climax that way? I mean I am aware of where my G-spot is and my boyfriend said he’ll be focusing more on hitting it “spot” on. There’s also another thing I have noticed, sometimes my boyfriend will hit my cervix and it hurts a bit, but is this even normal? Should he even be able to hit it? Or is there something abnormal going on here?

Let’s see, when you say you “love having sex and it feels super duper good but why can’t I climax that way?” Are you referring to full-on cock in cooter fucking when you say, “having sex”? The reason I ask is that not everyone means the same thing when they use that trite euphemism.

Since you’re not here to fill in the blanks, so to speak. I’ll assume you want to know why you can’t have or haven’t yet had a vaginal orgasm. But before I answer, I just want to say that I hope you are not setting up an orgasmic dichotomy where there doesn’t need to be one. That would truly be unwise.

If you are at all familiar with your genital anatomy, you will know that the pleasure centers in that area of your body are all wired together. Your clit, G-spot, pussy, taint (perineum) and butthole are all on the same circuit, so to speak. Each erogenous zone is distinct, of course, but they act in consort with one another. However, not all your parts will generate the same amount of buzz. Since a woman’s clit is at the center of this network of nerves, it tends to dominate all the others and it is generally the quickest way to intense pleasure for most women.

Ok, now my answer. I can’t really say why your not climaxing while you’re fucking. Other than the fact that an exclusively vaginal centered orgasm is a myth. The vast majority of women don’t have vaginal orgasms. In fact the degree of insensitivity inside a woman’s vagina is so high that Kinsey wrote in his seminal work, Sexual Behavior in the Human Female published back in 1953: “Among the women who were tested in our gynecologic sample, less than 14% were at all conscious that they had been touched.” That’s pretty remarkable, wouldn’t you say?

The vaginal orgasm myth is perpetuated, in part, by many women’s confusion and/or lack of knowledge about their own anatomy. Some women believe that an orgasm felt during fucking is centered in their cooch. This suggests to me that they aren’t being precise in locating the center of that orgasm. Other women believe in the vaginal orgasm myth because they think they need to conform to a male oriented notion of female sexuality — fucking = cuming. And that’s simply wrong, don’t cha know. Just ask all the preorgasmic women out there.

But ya know what? I don’t own a pussy my own self. All I can only tell you is what I have learned from those people who actually have a honeypot. The people I’m referring to, we’ll call them females, tell me vaginal orgasms, mythological or not, may simply be dependent on a tone of a woman’s pelvic musculature. As amazing as pussies are, and they are amazing, if the muscles that surround them are not taught and toned enough, a fucking generated orgasm may elude the owner of said pussy.

Some women haven’t developed their PC muscles enough to cum through fucking alone. Are you doing your kegels, Angie? If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you have some serious remedial research to do.

The elusive vaginal orgasm may also have to do with your partner cock, particularly the girth of his unit and opposed to its length. My women friends tell me that a thicker cock may have more of a chance triggering a vaginal orgasm then a pencil dick. No surprise there, I suppose. Position will also play a role. Why not give a bunch of different positions a try and see if one or another makes a difference? You on top cowgirl style, or doggie style might work best. But it’s your coozie, my dear, and you ought to know it better than I.

As to your G-spot question. That’s another thing all together. I am so glad that you are familiar with your anatomy enough to have found your own personal G-spot. And it’s great to hear that you have an accommodating partner who is working on stimulating this sensitive area. Good for you both! However, while I wholeheartedly endorse and encourage your further investigations and sex play, I do have one caution. I share the concern of most of my women friends. We want you to avoid all the G-spot hype floating around in the popular culture these days. Most women have a good time with their G-spot exploration. They report that it is not particularly difficult to find, but it’s also much harder to pleasure. If a woman, you perhaps, gets it in her head that something amazing is supposed to happen with a G-spot stimulation, she might be setting herself up for disappointment. In the same way some women, you perhaps, set themselves up for disappointment if they buy into the myth of an exclusively vaginal generated orgasm.

I encourage you to see your genitals as a whole, not a bunch of separate parts that somehow work independently of one another. If your pussy is happy and your pussy is making you happy; is it really all that important how the happiness comes to be?

In comparison us men folk are not all that fussy. What gets us off; gets us off. I never hear from a guy who is disappointed because he’s not having an exclusively prostate generated orgasm. They do happen, but we’re not the least bit concerned when they don’t happen. I also never hear from a guy who thinks he should be orgasmic through manipulation of his balls alone. That can happen too, but we’re not holding our breath for them.

What I do hear from guys is that we often need a particular kind of dick-oriented stimulation to get us off. And this is where the men folk and the women folk are a whole lot alike. You, like us, probably need a particular kind of stimulation to get you off. Be it vaginal, clitoral, G-spot, or whatever. If you acknowledge that your genitals are a composite of parts that work together to bring you joy, then you’ll be less likely to be swayed by the claims, hype and misinformation about female sexual response.

Regarding the issue of your boyfriend hitting your cervix. Yeah, that’ll hurt, don’t cha know. I’d be willing to guess that he’s in the wrong position and being too athletic in his pumping when that happens. If he’s bumping your cervix, but you like the depth and athleticism of his manly thrusts, simply change position. That should remedy the problem.

Finally, I’d simply advise you to respect the uniqueness of your body and your sexual response cycle. If it’s your clit that delivers the big O, even though you are being pleasured elsewhere. Then by all means, stimulate your clit while whatever else is happening, and enjoy the ride.

Good luck