Thursday, September 6, 2012
Fifty Shades of Frenzy
Fifty Shades of Grey is the story of an older man preying on the innocence and vulnerability of a younger woman, using her as his victim to fulfill his fantasy of sexual domination, abuse and perversion. It begins with him luring her with gifts to having her sign a contract giving him complete power to do his bidding with her in his 'red room of pain'. Basically it's pornography in written form, just as addicting as the visual form, designed to romanticize the sexual violence and victimization of women.
The subject matter of Fifty Shades of Grey is the very thing I've spent the last 8 years helping rescue and heal women from. It alarms and saddens me that so many women are flocking to a book that glamorizes and romanticizes the predatory sexual, emotional and physical abuse and domination of women when in reality there's nothing glamorous or sexy about it. Instead what I see and hear from women is the broken lives filled with pain and devastation this reaps for decades following. For many, its just an interesting story, but in the world I live and minister in, it is someone's story...one they wish wasn't real.
Not only is this sexually perverse material addicting for both men and women, but by it's nature pornography desensitizes all of us to the sexual violence against women and children. Studies are showing that men who watch hard core pornography have higher rates of sexual abuse of children, rape and violence against women, and are more likely to buy or sell girls in the sex industry. With 1/3 girls and 1/6 boys sexually abused by age 18, over 50% of a woman's first sexual experience being forced or unwanted, and sex-trafficking of women and children at pandemic proportions, pornography in my opinion is the single greatest cause and must bear the blame.
In my opinion the frenzy over this subject matter generated mainly by women, has taken our sexual identity and integrity as strong, beautiful, independent and equal women a step backward rather than forward. For me the saddest thing about this book is that it's women who've made it a best seller. Why would we as women want to glorify and glamorize the very thing we've spent decades trying to free ourselves from? That's what I don't understand.