An end to violence?

I feel slightly inappropriate today. I turn up to work looking like Bettie Page and discover it’s International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. But where exactly does BDSM sit in relation to feminism? To the uninitiated, it may look like any woman who takes the submissive role in BDSM play is in no position to refer to herself as a feminist. However, there is a huge difference in the sort of thing that Bettie et al got up to and that which the United Nations seeks to eliminate. BDSM should always be “safe, sane and consensual”, whereas the UN is calling for an end to the likes of rape, domestic violence, sex trafficking, so-called “honour” crimes and female genital mutilation/cutting. There is no consent in these cases, just horrific unnessary violence. Some people may suggest that images of BDSM activities promote violence towards women, just as they claim that pornography encourages rape, but surely it’s only the extremely hardcore and difficult to find examples that could even possibly be considered to support this theory? In addition, I think you’ll find that the majority of porn ‘users’ do not have even the slightest urge to force themselves on another human being, either before or after watching anything that claims to depict that. Hmm, I think more research and a longer article from me beckons on this subject…

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