28 April 2010

Compulsory heterosexuality, sex education in schools, and multisexualism

Sex is political, not just pleasure-driven, the idea of 'compulsory heterosexuality' being the foremost lifestyle on which our society hinges. What everyone is required to do, regardless of their sexuality, is to reinforce the compulsory cultural norm of heterosexuality, at home, work, and school, and at volunteer activities.

Pressure is put on young men and women to conform or if not, to uphold the one accepted major sexual lifestyle in our society in the 21st century - heterosexuality. Even lesbians have to abide by the desires of straight men, and find a way of living in this world alongside them; not so difficult for gay men, whose brains, and the location of them, aren't so far off that of straight men.

Is it possible for society to raise respectful men and women, when so much hinges on their support for an ideology that places at its centre not just the old stand-by 'family,' but the ideals of 'pleasure' and 'work'? Heterosexuality has little to do with respect. Rewarding those who conform to or uphold heterosexual demands leads only to a false respect. It's about power and subordination, rather than co-operation and respect for one's own body and the choices of others. Men's desire for sex, and women's for a career or the chance to do their life's work, seem to involve the necessity to 'fake it', each in their own way, as their agendas collide.Barbara Kay argues in her recent article that 'multisexualism' refers to the idea that "all sexual behaviours and lifestyles are of equal social worth, except those that refuse to detach morality from sexuality." This has been the way sex education has been presented in schools, as something matter-of-fact, instead of sexuality being recognized as value-laden and deeply personal (at least for some). Time for change!

What is needed, rather than a school curriculum about sexual practices, is for boys and girls to become aware from an early stage how our society indoctrinates them into becoming men or women. Instead of sex classes, an emphasis on masculinity and femininity in the social context of life could be a valuable addition to the school curriculum. Teaching 'sex and gender' classes at an earlier age would give young people the resources they need to examine the social situations they find themselves in as they grow older, and possibly make more informed choices.

And then there's the argument that heterosexuality is normal, that it's how our civilized society has evolved, that there's nothing 'compulsory' about it. But surely female animals don't always want sex with the males but do have to coerced, sometimes. Do the males just have to line up, or do they have to preen and display their maleness to attract the females.

Girls no longer have to wait for estrus, as their female animal counterparts have to, but that doesn't mean they want it all the time. Heterosexuality is fine, as a lifestyle, or a cultural norm. But it's through women having to look sexually attractive, having to do sex in order to be 'real' women, or though being coerced or having to put up with men's unwanted advances as well as putting up with women's acts of persuasion,' that the term 'compulsory' takes its meaning.

The original mention of the new sex education curriculum mentioned sexual orientation and gender identity. Could it be these terms that scared parents, the public schools, and the Catholic schools) off just as much as the mention of anal sex? It looks as though most parents just want their kids to know the basics, but not have any further understanding of their own sexuality.

Added June, 2012

It looks like things are changing rather quickly. Note links to 5 additional articles added - Anti-bullying bill a front (2011); Anti-bullying bill passes (2012); Birds, bees and poisonous rhetoric (2011); Hudak says McGuinty keeps parents in dark (2011); Sex-ed game featuring penis-armed 'Sperminator' (2012).

Anti-bullying bill a front for ‘sex ed’ agenda, groups say
By Tanya Talaga Queen's Park Bureau
The Star
Dec 6, 2011

Anti-bullying bill passes final reading
The Canadian Press
The Record
Jun 6, 2012

Birds, bees and poisonous rhetoric on sex ed in Ontario
By Emma Teitel
Oct 25, 2011

The cult of multisexualism
By Barbara Kay
National Post
Apr 28, 2010 http://network.nationalpost.com/NP/blogs/fullcomment/archive/2010/04/28/barbara-kay-the-cult-of-multisexualism.aspx  link not working

Hudak says McGuinty keeps parents in dark on sex-ed curriculum
By Keith Leslie, The Canadian Press
Global Toronto News and The Canadian Times
Sept 23, 2011

McGuinty says he was in the dark about sex-ed plan
By Karen Howlett Toronto — Globe and Mail Update
Published on Wednesday, Apr. 28, 2010

McGuinty’s sex-ed surrender
TO Star
Apr 29, 2010

Ontario premier defends sex-ed curriculum
By Linda Nguyen, Canwest News Service
National Post
Apr 20, 2010

Sex-ed game featuring penis-armed 'Sperminator' sparks controversy
By Jonathan Sher, QMI Agency
Toronto Sun
Jan 20, 2012

Links updated June 2012