I have been following the brouhaha regarding Congressman Wiener showing his wiener to women online. My response is who cares? As usual, the press plays up any news of a sexual nature to the expense of real news. You would think, judging by America’s sanctimonious shock at this behavior, that it is a shock to discover that congressmen have genitals. Our attitudes towards sex are hypocritical and nonsensical. I also think it sends the wrong message to children. It makes it appear that our bodies are something to be ashamed of, especially our genitals. This obsession with sex on the part of media, which is combined with mock outrage over sexual expression, is undoubtedly a very confusing double message for young people. Be sexual, but keep it hidden, and don’t feel good about it. Now we will have to endure an endless stream of pseudo-professional opinion about sexual addiction on every available talk show. I don’t condone what Wiener did, but I also don’t consider it a capital crime. Let’s save our shock and outrage for pedophiles, rapists, and their ilk. I think it would be far healthier for congress to censure his behavior, instead of asking him to step down. I would welcome a national dialogue about healthy sexual behavior, as opposed to no sexual behavior. I would say that there is no question but that we have a sick society when it comes to sex. The obsession with sex which is all around us reflects a lack of actual sex in our lives. The sickness lies in our feelings of shame and moral outrage over perfectly normal sexual behavior, confusing it with true perversion. It seems that as soon as the words “sex” and “children” are said in the same breath, people go crazy, and are incapable of a rational thought. The message we are sending to our children is perpetuating our own sickness, our own double standard. We pretend to be non-sexual pure hearted people, while pushing away into a dark corner of our psyche all our sexual fantasies and urges, pretending they aren’t there. I don’t pretend to know how to address this problem, but I do know that approaching it honestly, forthrightly, and above all, nonjudgmentally, is very important. Let me be clear, I’m not talking about sexual crimes here, but about relatively harmless sexual activity. Sex will rear it’s (I started to write “ugly head” but why does it need to be considered ugly?) It will rear it’s head in any case, regardless of anyone’s effort to suppress it. It is up to us to deal with sexual urges intelligently, and with a sense of humor, instead of creating a tempest in a teapot, and pretending to be shocked and outraged.
I could go on about the sources of these stupid and dangerous attitudes towards sex that has typified American society since the Puritans, but I won’t. Suffice to say, I hope that over time we will develop a much more mature attitude towards sex, like what you find in most of Europe. In the meantime, go to church. Just kidding, church is often the worst cesspool of suppressed sexuality!