So I got into a pod-beef with Adam about his advice in a YouTube video to someone into kink (video and whole story here.) We also beefed a little and called each other names on Facebook. Then we both calmed down and Adam posted this cogent reply:
Well, I’ll readily admit AGAIN that I’m no expert, but what exactly did I say that was incorrect? This is not a very helpful position: “Hey dumb frat boy, read some books!” I wasn’t trying to instruct people on kink and you emailed me! I love talking about things I have less knowledge of than sex even, but I don’t talk out of my ass.
I wrote him a calm reply, but it was too long to fit in a WordPress comment (it had to be long to cover it all and answer in depth, he did have a point about me not really providing the answer, just the question), so here’s my reply:
I too love talking about things I have little knowledge of. But I try not to do it when someone’s asking me advice on a life definition.
Here are my thoughts about your answers, in order as the issues appear in your answers to the guy in the video:
–Confusing “Dom” with “Dominatrix” is insulting to both Doms and Dominatrixes. It’s hard to explain why, kind of a “if you have to ask you’d never know.” But the closest approximation I can think of is it’s a lot like saying “He was Japanese, you know, that’s like Chinese, they’re pretty much interchangeable.”
You said you used the word “Dominatrix” because no one knows what the male equivalent is. Well, most people only even know the idea of a Dominatrix from Hollywood movies and TV, and that’s almost always wrong stereotypes. And give your audience a little credit: if you’d even done a quick Wikipedia search, you could have correctly said “The male equivalent of a Dominatrix is called a Dom. Here’s what that means….” rather than your substitution, which came off as “Y’all aren’t smart enough to understand new concepts, so let’s reduce it to your level of understanding.”
And by calling a guy a Dominatrix, you’re calling him a woman. Not something most Doms would dig.
And actually for a female lifestyle kink Dominant, the more common term is “Domme” (It’s pseudo-French, and sometimes pronounced exactly the same as “Dom”, and other times pronounced, probably incorrectly, but very common by use, somewhere between “da MAY” and “dom-A”).
“Dominatrix” more often implies a pro, which has little to nothing to do with this subject.
Also using the word “dominator” was wrong and had nothing to do with it. It would be like someone saying “Yeah, libertarians, you know, liberals”, just because the word has a common root or sounds a little similar.
–Cavalierly joking “You know, you’re in a dungeon whipping somebody and they ask you if you’ve read Atlas Shrugged…..” …Reducing BDSM to the cartoon of “in a dungeon whipping somebody…” is, well, it’s hard to explain to an outsider, but an apt analogy would be “You know how it is with the gays, some dude is swishing down the street in his best dress and….”
–Sarcastically saying “….reading Atlas Shrugged, I’m sure it happens all the time”, (you are saying it doesn’t), is uninformed. There actually are a lot of people into BDSM who are libertarians. It kind of goes with the territory. BDSM is about voluntarily giving up or being given a lot of control, and it tends to go hand in hand with not wanting outside forces deciding what you do. It’s a sort of personal panarchy. Aside from that, if UK Libertarian is actually from the UK, consensual BDSM can land you in PRISON in the UK. Anything that leaves scars, even temporarily, even consensually, is illegal in the UK. The UK actually has task forces to crack down on what kinky adults do in in private. So a lot of UK kinky people have an inherent distrust of government.
–You saying “There are couples like that????” (24/7 PE, i.e. full-time power exchange relationships, i.e. full-time lifestyle BDSM, not just an occasional bit of slap and tickle in a vanilla relationship), you sounded somewhere between incredulous (which is understandable for an outsider) and judgmental.
I tend to make analogies between BDSM and homosexuality to explain this to people (since I am absolutely convinced from experience, and from one-on-one research with many people, that a true kink orientation is as strong a non-choice as being gay, and is likely something one is born with, not something one decides.) So again, imagine yourself saying on camera “There are couples like that? Where two dudes or two chicks do it????”
OK, everything I’ve mentioned so far one could dismiss as “politically correcting” you, and arguing nuance….more something that’s a gray area than something to call someone out on. But then you go on to:
Call kinky people “weird perverts.” That’s damning people to a “less than you” status for what they ARE.
(Then you get it RIGHT for a moment and concede that anything that’s consensual and voluntary is OK. That was well done. If that had been the entirety of your answer, I would have applauded you.)
–HOWEVER…..then you say “However….” and go into some really bad shit….saying, “From a psychological perspective you have to wonder what makes someone want to do this…..”
That’s reinforcing WRONG stereotypes.
Hollywood loves kink, and they love to use it as a plot device with serial killers and torturers, when in reality almost all 24/7 power exchange couples are not even slightly abusive, and they probably have sex lives that would appear boring to most people when compared to their expectations. It’s deep and it’s sweet, but it’s not all whips and chains. Going into a lot of detail would take more space than a blog post allows, THAT is where the recommended reading would come in.
(The only time I’ve ever seen Hollywood almost get it right is the CSI character “Lady Heather”, who was a lifestyle Domme shown with some depth, compassion and accuracy. But outside of her lifestyle BDSM, she was also a pro. And of course, after a few episodes she was also a murderer. And of course her manner of killing was torture…she whipped a man to death for killing her daughter.)
–Then you brought an accusation of statism into your comparison and say, “That (mimicking the State) must be a part of the appeal (of kink).” Wow. Bad. Wrong.
A 24/7 PE is like the sub taking a beautiful day at a spa, forever, in an ongoing vacation with someone they deeply love. And the Dom is a loving protector and mentor to someone they deeply love. And it’s all voluntary. And in a very complex way (again the recommended reading), the sub actually has as much, if not more, of the power. It’s NOT like signing up for a gulag. It has NOTHING to do with the State.
–You go on with this line of “reasoning” for quite some time, driving it home and dominating and beating it into the ground. And it’s all based on uninformed misinformation.
Again, a good analogy to you saying “It’s OK as long as you don’t make it like the State” is like if someone wrote you and said “Can I be gay and a libertarian?” if you replied, “Sure, as long as you don’t molest little boys like all those priests do.” Actually that would be far more apt, since some priests do molest. Not many, but more than there are kinky 24/7 PE people who “become like the State.”
–Next you commit what I consider your worst move yet: saying that being into kink probably has something to do with a traumatic childhood. WRONG. I’ve known and chatted with 100s of kinky men and women, and befriended dozens, and I’d say the percentage who had traumatic childhoods is exactly the same as with non-kinky people. ”You must have had a traumatic childhood” is a really common (and incorrect) bashing of BDSM. Stefan Molyneux did this too. Of course he reduces EVERYTHING to “You must have had a traumatic childhood”…to the point where he recently said that about anyone who practices martial arts. Look at the shit he caught for that, and rightfully so. Ben Stone (The Bad Quaker) had a good take on this: people reduce things to their field of knowledge. Someone who believes in the god of psychology will reduce kink to “You had a traumatic childhood.” A priest will tell a kinky person to get right with Jesus, etc. ect.
Almost EVERYONE had a traumatic childhood in one way or another. Reducing kink to that is saying “Most libertarians brushed their teeth as kids, so brushing teeth leads one to reject the state.”
Saying that “being into kink probably has something to do with a traumatic childhood” is as without basis, yet as commonly repeated, as “Without the government there would be no roads, old people would starve, no one would know how to read, and little kids would be working in coal mines.”
BDSM was categorized by psychologists as a mental disorder until not long ago. So was homosexuality, though homosexuality was downgraded from that about three decades before BDSM. (Homosexuality got taken off shrink’s “sick list”, i.e. the DSM, earlier because homosexuality has a large installed lobbyist and public information contingent. Apparently with kink, I’m it. At least in the liberty community. A lot of people who are kinky aren’t willing to talk about it in public, for fear of judgment and reprisals. People have lost their jobs from doing that, and even been disowned by their families. And being kinky has been used against people in a divorce on many occasions, including to steal custody when there’s no harm to the kids by one parent being quietly kinky.)
Shrinks have spread the idea to society that kink is the result of an unhappy childhood. I think they’ve done this from a combination of “fear of things outside the ‘norm’” i.e. trying to “normalize” everyone, and also for getting themselves more paid work. You know, if you want to know if you need a haircut, ask a barber. He’s going to say “yes” no matter what. Shrinks also love to drug kids and work with the State to control people (especially people who think for themselves), so I’d say they, not kinky people, are the ones who want to control and act like the State. There is also a recognized disorder known as “Oppositional Defiant Disorder“, which if you read the description basically sounds like “Anyone who doesn’t trust authority.” Yet shrinks medicate and even institutionalize people for that.
–You end your video and sum up by reinforcing the “Don’t act like the State” again. More of the same.
I think sometimes it’s OK to answer a question with “I don’t know.” If someone called in to the Freedom Feens and said “I want to get in shape, what should I do?” I would NOT tell them “I think you might have Body Dysmorphic Disorder caused by a traumatic childhood and you really need to examine that. Also, make sure you don’t act like the STATE with your weight lifting. Don’t get all pumped up and start beating people up.”
No, if someone called in to the Freedom Feens and said “I want to get in shape, what should I do?”, I’d say, “I have no idea. Talk to Adam Kokesh, Pete Eyre and Ademo. They are doing really well with it, so they must know what advice to give. Let me put you in touch with them.”
–Michael W. Dean