Enthusiastic consent is smart; a rebuttal to Paul Elam

Before we begin, let’s get one thing clear. For human beings—that is those bipedal creatures without hormonal heats and an extremely well developed theory of mind—it’s not access to sperm or egg that’s the draw of sex, it’s the feeling of being desirable. When one understands that, one realizes how very selfish the average woman is during sex. She demands the man express desire well above and beyond her own before dignifying his efforts with her desire in return.

If she ever does.

The Average Woman will proclaim the Average Man’s body sexually useless; it doesn’t bring her to orgasm after all! Since sex isn’t about stimulating nerve endings, the real subtext of this statement is: the female body is desirable, the male body is gross and worthless.

In her fantasies the average woman takes her desire for narcisistic sex even further. She imagines men with no other existence then to lust for her, over powered by their urges to the point where they will tolerate zero desire from her.

Yep. She strips her fantasy man of his dignity as he pants for her like a dog riveted by a steak and she reserves the right to, herself, regard his sexuality with disdain or, worse, fear. He will drool and shit himself into a lather of sexual ecstasy by just having access to her body, her glorious mucus lined crevasse; while she reserves for herself the right to remain visibly unmoved by his.

She constructs a world in which she does not have to offer desire. Because offering desire is work; it’s hard; it’s dangerous; it’s uncomfortable. Being desired is the real benefit of sex, so why should she have to give it to him? In her fantasy world no man is worth that work.

In the real world, no man is worth that work either but in the real world the average woman has to make some overtures since she has to deal with men who are concerned with legal realities.

So, grudgingly, contemptuously, sneeringly, she offers an empty, sallow, passive, reluctant, cowardly “yes” in the face of all the desire he lays at her feet.

With a snide bit of self-martyrdom and a superior air of charity, she’ll believe she’s being generous with her oh-so-desirable female body by allowing her male partner access to it when she’s “not in the mood”.

She gives him sex, you see. She’s such a good sort!

(Since feeling desirable is the only reason to bother with sex with another human being—nerve endings are better stimulated with machines and creative visuals—why men accept this degrading state of affairs in exchange for absolutely nothing is beyond the ken of this particular woman.)

So why not make “enthusiastic consent” a legal reality?

This will force women to do even more of the work they really don’t want to. It will force them to express their desire for men with opaque and unambiguous intensity. It will force them to learn to take pleasure from the passive male body (as men do the passive female body.)

Making enthusiastic consent a legal reality will, of course, reduce the amount of flatulent, inert sex that men have access to, but perhaps that will finally get a significant body of men questioning if said drippy, queasy sex—with no assurance of orgasm for the man without the kind of painful, desperate effort one might associate with sawing down a cedar with a length of dental floss—is worth having access to in the first place.

But when it comes right down to it, what’s really baffling about feminists and the “enthusiastic standard of consent” is why they believe it’s men they have to convince to embrace it; after all up till now it’s women who’ve been given a pass when it comes to making men feel desirable.

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all that changed?

This article is a rebuttal to Paul Elam’s Enthusiastic Stupidity.–DE

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