Transgender Rights

I’m working on putting together a graphic on where transgender rights are per state. In the meantime, from graphiq.com, here is a graph of the number of transgender people per 100,000 in different states of the US.

I’m working on putting together a graphic on where transgender rights are per state. In the meantime, from graphiq.com, here is a graph of the number of transgender people per 100,000 in different states of the US. Source is 2010 census data.  Oregon, Vermont and Washington lead at 10.6 transgender people per 100,000.

Tea & Consent

I ran into this video awhile ago and it’s stuck in my mind. It’s the perfect video for explaining consent to someone who just. doesn’t. get it.  If that sounds like someone you know, see if you can share this video with them, and then find out what they think. It could be a life-changing conversation.

Why the Queer Struggle Matters to Kinksters

“When it comes down to it, it’s about solidarity in our stand for sexual freedom, and it’s about knowing what it feels like to be hurt because of whom and how you love.”

From Top to Bottom

So yesterday was National Coming Out Day in the States, and today I’d like write a bit about why the queer struggle for equality is absolutely necessary to the health and vitality of the BDSM community.  The “duh” explanation of this is that any legal and social vindication of sexual rights also supports sexual freedoms in other arenas.  From a common sense perspective, it’s difficult to imagine that a subculture that fully supports cross-dressing for humiliation purposes as well as gender play, the subversion of gender roles of submission/dominance, etc., would turn its face from same-sex partnerships.  For the BDSM community and gay rights, however, the symbiosis goes much deeper than superficial commonalities.

First and foremost, it’s important to remember how much the BDSM scene owes to our gay brothers and sisters.  According to Bienvenu’s 1998 dissertation on kinkster culture, the beginnings of the organized modern scene began in…

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Federal Judge: Consensual BDSM is Not Constitutionally Protected

A federal court in Virginia ruled recently that consensual kink is not constitutionally protected,that is, that an individual has no right to engage in 100% consensual BDSM.  Judge TS Ellis, ruling on Doe vs. George Mason University et. al, stated in his analysis:

“A legislative restriction on BDSM activity is justifiable by reference to the state’s interest in the protection of vulnerable persons, i.e. sexual partners placed in situations with an elevated risk of physical harm. In this respect, the conclusion… that there is no deeply rooted history or tradition of BDSM sexual activity remains relevant and important to the analysis.”

 

The court found that banning BDSM activities is justified and further states that since there is no “deeply rooted” tradition of BDSM (defined as including “binding and gagging, or the use of physical force, such as spanking or choking,” activities “not present in traditional sex”), it is not constitutionally protected.

Although the term “BDSM” dates only to 1969, the history of BDSM activities can be traced through such ancient documents as the Kama Sutra, which specifies the use of certain kinds of hitting during sex and through art dating back thousands of years. Dating back to the 5th century BC is an Etruscan fresco depicting two men flagellating a woman. Academic historian Anne O. Nomis has found evidence dating back to 1590 of the Dominatrix as a professional.

“This is one judge’s ruling and it doesn’t create law,” said Allena Gabosch, founder and current Development Director for the Center for Sex Positive Culture. It can, however, set legal precedent. People interested in this news item might consult the Free Thought Project or the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom to inquire further.

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