Prager Part II: More reasons why women should put out on demand

Dennis Prager’s thoughts on why women have no real right to deny men sex (excuse me, the “giving” of their bodies) couldn’t be summarized in just one column. No, Prager needed a sequel to his ode to marital rape.
Jesse takes apart the whole piece, so I won’t reinvent the wheel – but I will leave you with my favorite part:

Why would a loving, wise woman allow mood to determine whether or not she will give her husband one of the most important expressions of love she can show him? What else in life, of such significance, do we allow to be governed by mood?
What if your husband woke up one day and announced that he was not in the mood to go to work? (Emphasis mine)

And that’s all I have to say about that.

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81 Comments

  1. mercedes
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

    why should i read someones analysis to properly understand the article? i think the analysis is what’s getting you so worked up. the article itself is really harmless.
    “Every rational and decent man knows there are times when he should not initiate sex. In a marriage of good communication, a man would either know when those times are or his wife would tell him (and she needs to — women should not expect men to read their minds. He is her man, not her mother.)”
    seeeee.. he’s talking to rational and decent men, not rapists just to clear this up. and he’s putting the responsibility on the woman to communicate when she really doesn’t want to. but there’s a difference between “not in the mood” and “it’s out of the question” like Clix said and it’s really annoying to have to keep re-iterating that he doesn’t condone rape.
    the lol prager picture is offensive, and it would behoove you all as feminists to check yourselves sometimes. you know that old saying that if you keep crying out pretending that something is wrong when it’s not no one will listen when you actually need help. well this is one of those cases my feminist sisters and it’s all of womankind who deal with the consequences.

  2. mercedes
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

    why should i read someones analysis to properly understand the article? i think the analysis is what’s getting you so worked up. the article itself is really harmless.
    “Every rational and decent man knows there are times when he should not initiate sex. In a marriage of good communication, a man would either know when those times are or his wife would tell him (and she needs to — women should not expect men to read their minds. He is her man, not her mother.)”
    seeeee.. he’s talking to rational and decent men, not rapists just to clear this up. and he’s putting the responsibility on the woman to communicate when she really doesn’t want to. but there’s a difference between “not in the mood” and “it’s out of the question” like Clix said and it’s really annoying to have to keep re-iterating that he doesn’t condone rape.
    the lol prager picture is offensive, and it would behoove you all as feminists to check yourselves sometimes. you know that old saying that if you keep crying out pretending that something is wrong when it’s not no one will listen when you actually need help. well this is one of those cases my feminist sisters and it’s all of womankind who deal with the consequences.

  3. mercedes
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

    why should i read someones analysis to properly understand the article? i think the analysis is what’s getting you so worked up. the article itself is really harmless.
    “Every rational and decent man knows there are times when he should not initiate sex. In a marriage of good communication, a man would either know when those times are or his wife would tell him (and she needs to — women should not expect men to read their minds. He is her man, not her mother.)”
    seeeee.. he’s talking to rational and decent men, not rapists just to clear this up. and he’s putting the responsibility on the woman to communicate when she really doesn’t want to. but there’s a difference between “not in the mood” and “it’s out of the question” like Clix said and it’s really annoying to have to keep re-iterating that he doesn’t condone rape.
    the lol prager picture is offensive, and it would behoove you all as feminists to check yourselves sometimes. you know that old saying that if you keep crying out pretending that something is wrong when it’s not no one will listen when you actually need help. well this is one of those cases my feminist sisters and it’s all of womankind who deal with the consequences.

  4. Kristen
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

    “why should i read someones analysis to properly understand the article? i think the analysis is what’s getting you so worked up. the article itself is really harmless.”
    Because you’re failing to understand what he’s saying in context? The analysis provides context for those who don’t understand the perspectives of those who are upset.
    That you aren’t seeing that perspective, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist…it just means you aren’t very perceptive or empathetic…

  5. rileystclair
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

    exactly. having sex when you aren’t really in the mood but can get some enjoyment out of doing it anyway because your partner is happy is fine and i think that most people have done it at least once in their lives. it’s fine as long as it’s a legitimate choice. the problem is that no one should have to feel like they HAVE to put out when they’re not up for it or be subjected to endless whining, derision, guilt-tripping or verbal abuse because they don’t feel like getting it on. no one has the RIGHT to anyone else’s body.

  6. Lis
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

    “seeeee.. he’s talking to rational and decent men, not rapists”
    Because rational and decent men and women can not rape someone? a rapist is not just a guy in a ski mask following a woman down a dark alley. rapists are more often friends or relatives or aquaintances.
    As for your other points this man may not be advocating rape, but he is advocating a mindset that easily can lead to spousal abuse and rape. It is not only old-fashioned, it is dangerous and belittles both men and women by labeling men as primitive animals and women as object that must bow to their animalistic husband’s desires.

  7. zp27
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

    I’m going to agree with you to a point, but I think that even besides the “is this even rape” issue, it’s a really stupid way to think: it’s entitled and insensitive to think “I deserve sex because I’m a man and married, period. No discussion”

  8. alixana
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

    Gee, no one else has ever come here before to smack us down under the guise of CONCERN.

  9. zp27
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

    sorry, didn’t finish (I can’t post right, apparently) and without rising to the level of abuse or rape, that kind of marriage sounds just gross. I guess it could be a form of emotional abuse, though.

  10. doubleb
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

    You are correct, but the last post made it very obvious that no one actually wants to read what he’s saying, they just want to attribute new things to him so that they can get really mad about it.
    It’s frustrating; as I see you’ve discovered.

  11. Lis
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    I love to read what this guy is saying! Brilliant bits like the following make me laugh. It’s LOL, LOL, funny:
    “But for most women, for myriad reasons — female nature, childhood trauma, not feeling sexy, being preoccupied with some problem, fatigue after a day with the children and/or other work, just not being interested — there is little comparable to a man’s “out of nowhere,” and seemingly constant, desire for sex.”"
    It’s better than a barrel of monkeys!

  12. ShifterCat
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 1:24 am | Permalink

    That’s part of the problem — he never, ever, bothers to define what a “good man” is.

  13. ShifterCat
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 1:34 am | Permalink

    Pssst! Lots of rapists don’t think of themselves as rapists. The perception that “rape” is only ever a violent assault by a stranger is still pretty widespread, and it allows plenty of rapists to let themselves off the hook.
    Hey, here’s an idea. Instead of just saying, “Nuh-uh”, read the analyses I linked to and do a point-by-point rebuttal.

  14. Ayla
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 3:43 am | Permalink

    The many razor-sharp dissections and pointed, fact-based jabs made by commenters and bloggers here and elsewhere prove that at least some of us were reading very, very carefully.

  15. Julie_G
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 7:02 am | Permalink

    I went onto the actual column he posted and read everything he had to say. It was horrifying of course, but even worse was reading the comments on the article. I scrolled down expecting to see outraged or incredulous responses but instead I saw women and men supporting his ideas.
    If Prager was just a ranting eccentric, I could more easily ignore him. But when he has so many supporters, it really starts to freak me out.

  16. CaroJ
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    I read the comments and it wasn’t as bad as it first appeared. Most of the Prager supporting comments came from a handful of people who posted repeatedly. There were several comments from the “opposition” (i.e. people like us) but these were immediately attacked by the Prager groupies (ewwww, hard to believe they exist!!)
    Also, we have to remember this is a right-wing website that Prager is posting on, so like-minded people are going to make up the bulk of the audience.

  17. FrumiousB
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    Oh so sorry you’re frustrated that we little feminists don’t appreciate good old fashioned non-consensual sex!

  18. allegra
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    i wonder if anybody here would admit to doing it out of love or pity at some point in their life… it’s not as bad as you are making out to be..
    Certainly, I’ll admit that I have. But you’re also ignoring the historical meaning and significance of marital rape. The American ideal of marriage appearing in the last 50 years that people should “marry for love” has historically simply not been the case in nearly every country in the world. It is STILL not the case in many parts of the world that people marry freely and without input from family or religious conventions. It is still not the case in many parts of the world, even in the U.S., that husbands who abuse their wives are ever brought to justice. Marriages in the U.S. today, as we all know, also often result in divorce. Thus I don’t think it would be unusual in an imperfect marriage for a woman (or man) to simply not want sex at some point, either out of boredom or exhaustion or anger or for any reason at all. And thus I think it’s extremely important for women to establish and insist that their bodies are theirs, no one else’s. Marital rape did not even legally (or culturally) exist until the 20th century due to the same idiotic “reasonings” used by Prager, yet statistically we see domestic violence is NOT uncommon. There’s no reason to think that marital rape, including even violent rape, doesn’t really happen all that much. It does. And it often goes unreported and unpunished because a woman is told she should be “wise” and let her husband have his way with her whenever he wants.

  19. doubleb
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    Certainly many people were reading closely and sticking to the facts. But I feel like there were more who weren’t. Some people are somehow just absolutely unable to distinguish between saying “this article’s view, if taken seriously, may lead to more marital rape.” and “this article says that marital rape is fine”.
    There is in fact a distinction, and when you fail to ignore that distinction it’s exactly like saying “feminists think all men are rapists.” when they might want to say “all men are potentially rapists.” You would criticize that jump, but you’re making a completely analogous jump.
    But I’m obviously not worried about that. I’m obviously just being a rape apologist.

  20. Ziggy
    Posted January 3, 2009 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

    the topic you metnion is indeed quite fascinating. I remember thinking such laws are incredibly misogynist; menstruation is only normal, nothing abberant or abject, right? Then I came across a paper (forgot the name of the author) based on interviews with jewish women observing these laws. Interestingly, they oftne indicated that they actually liked the taboo on sex during their menstruation (and a short period afterwards, I recall). It absolved them from the marital ‘duty’ of sex now and then, which is something most of them actually welcomed rather than despised. not very on topic but there you go :)

  21. Ziggy
    Posted January 3, 2009 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

    I’m sorry i have to tell you this, but your nitpicking is starting to really bother me, here as well as in other posts. Of course, there are immense differences in the ways this guy’s words can be interpreted, and, this being a lively community, that will inadvertently happen here as well, with some analyses displaying more nuance than others. All of them deserve a place here – women have been silenced for too long. Criticizing some of us for apparent lack of substance and quality of our arguments is just disrespectful in this particular context. If you want to reply to those, in your opinion, not being careful enough in their analyses, go ahead – but don’t just stick to a generalized statements about the quality of the discussion. easy way to avoid that discussion, and to assert a certain (hierarchical?) distance.
    and no, I am not saying you are a rape apologist. I do think you’re somewhat out of order, though, especially in this context.

  22. vintgeglamourgrl
    Posted January 5, 2009 at 5:16 am | Permalink

    The whole idea that men just robotically want sex no matter what and that women only see sex as a duty is one that I have had a huge problem with for a very long time. The idea that women get no inherent pleasure from sex is just not true and incredibly damaging to women, men, and their relationships.
    I think it is equally the duty of each partner to work and strive toward a mutually satisfying sexual relationship. That means that if a woman has no desire to have sex and this continues for months and months, it is up to her to communicate with her partner and, together, for them to strive to change this. However this is not the same as expected a wife to always have sex no matter what with her husband. The same would go for a man who has lost his sex drive (and yes this does happen, although Prager apparently has no concept that men do lose their sex drive, and there are relationships where women have the higher sex drive). It would be his responsibility as a partner in the relationship to communicate with her and strive to change this.
    Sex is not about a woman “giving” and a man “taking.” Sex is about both man and woman “giving” and at the same time both “taking.” It’s not okay for either a man or a woman to allow his or her sex drive to disappear when in a relationship in which sex is desired and expected. Yet, it is never okay for a man to force his wife or partner to have sex.
    Why can’t we be adults and actually talk about sex? Actually talk about why one partner doesn’t want sex? I have always believed that a good relationship (in a long term commitment) is absolutely necessary for a good sex life. With honest communication, which you would hope a married couple would have, most sexual problems can be discussed and maybe with the help of counseling or sex therapy or other things can be resolved so that both partners desire sex.
    Can we please start to accept the fact that women are just as sexual as men and have just as much of a right to a satisfying sex life? That satisfaction may look a little different from a man’s, but neither is more important.

  23. vintgeglamourgrl
    Posted January 5, 2009 at 5:18 am | Permalink

    The whole idea that men just robotically want sex no matter what and that women only see sex as a duty is one that I have had a huge problem with for a very long time. The idea that women get no inherent pleasure from sex is just not true and incredibly damaging to women, men, and their relationships.
    I think it is equally the duty of each partner to work and strive toward a mutually satisfying sexual relationship. That means that if a woman has no desire to have sex and this continues for months and months, it is up to her to communicate with her partner and, together, for them to strive to change this. However this is not the same as expected a wife to always have sex no matter what with her husband. The same would go for a man who has lost his sex drive (and yes this does happen, although Prager apparently has no concept that men do lose their sex drive, and there are relationships where women have the higher sex drive). It would be his responsibility as a partner in the relationship to communicate with her and strive to change this.
    Sex is not about a woman “giving” and a man “taking.” Sex is about both man and woman “giving” and at the same time both “taking.” It’s not okay for either a man or a woman to allow his or her sex drive to disappear when in a relationship in which sex is desired and expected. Yet, it is never okay for a man to force his wife or partner to have sex.
    Why can’t we be adults and actually talk about sex? Actually talk about why one partner doesn’t want sex? I have always believed that a good relationship (in a long term commitment) is absolutely necessary for a good sex life. With honest communication, which you would hope a married couple would have, most sexual problems can be discussed and maybe with the help of counseling or sex therapy or other things can be resolved so that both partners desire sex.
    Can we please start to accept the fact that women are just as sexual as men and have just as much of a right to a satisfying sex life? That satisfaction may look a little different from a man’s, but neither is more important.

  24. vintgeglamourgrl
    Posted January 5, 2009 at 5:26 am | Permalink

    Apologies for posting that twice…I thought the first time had not gone through. I would delete one of I could.

  25. Snark
    Posted January 6, 2009 at 11:46 am | Permalink

    Funny, this.
    We’re endlessly told how important the right of a married woman to say “no” is, and that there’s nothing wrong with it.
    But god forbid the male say no.
    That’s wrong and bad. That’s an “alienation of affection”, or “denial of sex”, or “controlling her through sexuality”.
    Fun double standard!

  26. ShifterCat
    Posted January 6, 2009 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

    One of the feminist criticisms of Prager’s piece is that he glosses over the issue of men turning down sex.
    Men and women are equals, therefore both have the right of informed consent.
    The double standard you’re speaking of is, like all double standards, unfeminist.

  27. Snark
    Posted January 7, 2009 at 9:13 am | Permalink

    Excepting the fact that the double standard I’m speaking of, is enforced and supported by feminists.
    I’ve read quite a few pieces on quite a few feminist blogs, wherein they will say that a male denying sex is “alienation of affection”, or an attempt to “control a woman through sex, and denying her ‘needs’”.
    That’s why it’s funny to me.

  28. ShifterCat
    Posted January 8, 2009 at 12:24 am | Permalink

    Citations, please?

  29. The_IthacaSkin
    Posted January 19, 2009 at 6:14 am | Permalink

    In Mexico they passed a law making it “abuse” for a man to refuse to have sex with his wife. Imagine if the reverse of that law was passed in America.
    My girlfriend has sex with me when she’s not in the mood sometimes. I can say that she has more insight on relationships than most women these days, who seem to say “no” just for the thrill of feeling “empowered” and in the process destroy their relationships.
    7 months in and 0 arguments.

  30. The_IthacaSkin
    Posted January 19, 2009 at 6:18 am | Permalink

    If a woman refuses to have sex and the man leaves, he’s a pig.
    If the man refuses to work and the woman leaves, she’s “shrugging off dead weight” and “kicking out the bum.” … but aren’t women perfectly capable of supporting a house-husband in these empowered days?
    Double-standards abound, largely because women don’t understand jack all about men.
    Yay for 1 party politics!

  31. Vanessa
    Posted January 21, 2009 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    Troll banned folks!

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