Quick hit: The sexy moral choice

The brilliant Jill Filipovic of Feministe has a wonderful piece in The Guardian today, about why premarital sex is, despite all the high-handed abstinence-only smugness, the best moral choice.

Most adult human beings naturally desire sex. And despite the rightwing emphasis on concepts like “purity”, having sex does not actually make you a dirty or “impure” person. On the contrary, sex is like most other pleasurable things in life – you can have sex in ways that are fulfilling, fun, good and generous, or you can have sex in ways that are harmful, bad and dangerous. Marriage is not, and has never been, a way to protect against the harmful, bad and dangerous potential of sex (just read the Bible if you want a few examples). Instead of fooling ourselves into thinking that waiting until marriage makes sex “good”, we should focus on how ethical, responsible sexual practices – taking precautions to protect the physical and mental health of yourself and your partner; having sex that is fully consensual and focused on mutual pleasure – are part of being an ethical, responsible human being.

Sexual morality isn’t about how long you wait. It’s about how you treat yourself and the people you’re with.

Somebody put that on a bumper sticker, or tattoo it on your shoulder. Those are words to live by. You can read the whole thing here.

New York, NY

Chloe Angyal is a journalist and scholar of popular culture from Sydney, Australia. She joined the Feministing team in 2009. Her writing about politics and popular culture has been published in The Atlantic, The Guardian, New York magazine, Reuters, The LA Times and many other outlets in the US, Australia, UK, and France. She makes regular appearances on radio and television in the US and Australia. She has an AB in Sociology from Princeton University and a PhD in Arts and Media from the University of New South Wales. Her academic work focuses on Hollywood romantic comedies; her doctoral thesis was about how the genre depicts gender, sex, and power, and grew out of a series she wrote for Feministing, the Feministing Rom Com Review. Chloe is a Senior Facilitator at The OpEd Project and a Senior Advisor to The Harry Potter Alliance. You can read more of her writing at chloesangyal.com

Chloe Angyal is a journalist and scholar of popular culture from Sydney, Australia.

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  • http://feministing.com/members/mixerskid/ Katie

    “Marriage is not, and has never been, a way to protect against the harmful, bad and dangerous potential of sex”

    I couldn’t have said this better. I’m a young feminist who has been a victim of rape and has since healed and experienced beautiful and loving sexual encounters. My being “pure” wouldn’t have deterred my rapist. Having been married wouldn’t have deterred my rapist.
    My positive sexual experiences had nothing to do with marriage. They had to do with mutual respect and love.

    Thank you for this article!