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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Ethics and Politics » Girls, be ashamed of your bodies...

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Author Topic: Girls, be ashamed of your bodies...
Dzuunmod
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In the American city of San Francisco, recently, a woman appeared on a local morning television talk show to push a production of The Vagina Monologues, and -- get this -- she was told not to say the word 'vagina'.

This story takes you trough what happened and the reaction to it. The columnist who wrote this says that, "Bob Dole can speak openly about erectile dysfunction. But can you imagine Elizabeth Dole going on television to speak about a sexual problem?" But in a more direct comparison for this particular situation, I can't say I've ever heard the word penis on morning television, either. In fact, the only place I can imagine those words being said in morning broadcasting is The Howard Stern Show.

Still, the station hack who was quoted in the column doesn't give a satisfactory reason when he explains why he didn't want the word on the air: "In the morning, we recognize that a lot of parents are watching the show with their kids. As a parent, I'm not sure I'd be comfortable hearing that word in front of my kids. I think a lot of people would find it objectionable. Children might ask what it means.

"When you know there are children watching, you treat the news differently. It's not about censorship. I've talked to my staff about not showing any explicit violence in the morning show, blood stains, things like that. So it's not just about the use of certain words."

Children might ask what it means? Horror of horrors! He also notes that in afternoon and evening newscasts, he would say the word is okay, which sends his whold argument out the window, when you consider that children are certainly around the television set when dinner-hour newscasts come on.

What do you think?

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My God can beat up your God.
-Weights and Measures


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lemming
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I read this story a few days ago and, sorry to say, Dzuunmod, I'm behind you. I should have posted it when I saw it, eh? ;]

My first thought was, "This sounds like a great STUNT for a morning show. Can you imagine someone waffling about on the air trying to describe 'The Vagina Monologues' without saying 'vagina'? I bet this was hilarious."

But on the other hand, come on. The real judgment is if they can say "penis" on the air in the morning. Think back to John Bobbitt. If they said "penis" then, then they should be able to say "vagina" (or "clitoris," or "vulva," or whatever).

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~lemming, Scarleteen Advocate

this is what you get for liking it.
"Sebastian, you're in a mess, you had a dream they called you king of all the hipsters - is it true or are you still the queen?" --Belle and Sebastian, "Put The Book Back On The Shelf"


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Kite
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I can understand, if not approve of, the concept of making daytime TV as bland and unoffensive as possible. I don't think "vagina" is offensive, but I can understand the concept of keeping discussions of sexuality confined to the afternoon or evening shows.

What I don't understand is this: if keeping mornings bland is the whole idea, why on Earth was somebody asked to appear on daytime TV to talk about the "Vagina Monologues" in the first place? Why, as they mention in the article, would they show a live birth on "Good Morning, America"?

I agree with the author of the article when she says that allowing a word to be heard or said without shame is the first step towards accepting and embracing the denotation of the word. I know that my first step towards leaving my parents' completely aberrant homophobia behind me was saying the word "lesbian" without feeling queasy and averting my eyes.

Hey, I never realized that before! New food for thought! yaaaaaaay Thanks, Dzuunmod, for always pointing out interesting articles and ideas.


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Dude_who_writes
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Typical morning if the word vagina was used on television:

6 year old daughter: "Mama, that woman just said vagina. What's what's that mean?"

Mother: "Nothing sweetie. Now, you go take your bath and make sure you wash 'you-know-W-H-E-R-E.'"

This is utterly... annoying. I cannot understand the logic behind removing words like... ah! dare I say... VAGINA, which denotes the proper wording of a bodily part, from morning newscasts. It makes no sense. It's just another push by right-wingers to keep everyone confused, and therefore quelled and morally cleansed.

Now, if you'll excuse me, it's time to finish reading on treatment of the uterine cancer, which is a part of you-know-W-H-E-R-E, and then it's time to make sure I get in the shower and keep you-know-W-H-A-T clean and healthy.

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Tim

"Conversation, like certain other portions of anatomy, works best when lubricated." -- the Marquis de Sade (Quills)


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Lady Moonlight
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<giggle> Nice one, Tim.

Personally, I've always found it offensive that in American society sexuality is censored much more heavily than violence. (Okay, okay, I know this is an old, old topic.) But why, WHY is it okay to show somebody getting shot and bleeding to death on TV but at the same time we can't show two people having consentual loving sex? I remember as a child being really disturbed by violence on television, and having nightmares about it. Although I never had a chance to test it out, I really doubt sex on TV would have disturbed me nearly as much. At least my parents could have explained the sexual stuff (they were pretty good about that), but they never could answer the whys and wherefores of human beings deliberately being harmful to each other.


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Dzuunmod
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You gotta get up pretty early in the morning to beat old Dzuunmod, Lem.

And Kite, well, shucks... you're too nice!

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My God can beat up your God.
-Weights and Measures


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indigodazed
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Children might ask about it? For heavens sake! Any child who is old enough to ask about the word vagina should certainly already know what it means. Parents should tell their children about their bodies, and if they do not, the morning news and the people on it should not be responsible for any awkward moments.
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Maharet
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I'm kinda going to get hot under the collar here. I agree totally that censoring the word vagina is ridiculous. What I get annoyed about is that the vagina is not the word for women's genitalia, it's a PART. The vulva is what I feel is a better term (or even better imo is c *u*n*t {will that make it past the netnanny I wonder? } as it includes not just the vaginal passage but the clitoris, major and minor labia, urethra (or is that uretha? I'm not sure lol!). Just being passionately pedantic here.

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"If you don't like gays, then they're everywhere, coming out of the woodwork to corrupt little children... but if you are gay, especially if you're in high school, you're the only one in the universe..."


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BWHPA
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We're getting a little off topic but anyways......

I think that parents should tell there kids about a sexual criteria at age 5 becuase as bill cosby says; Kids say the darnest things. Aslo you don't want them to ask you in the middle of a dinner party or whatever.

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~*Who Dares Wins*~ SAF


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HeatherRocksMyBobbySocks
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All I have to say is thank goodness my mom was a nurse (and a labor and delivery one at that). "doctor, doctor, this woman says that water came out of her you-know-where!" No no, not my mom (not that nurses would say that, but y'know).

My brother's penis was not a 'wee-wee'
Using the restroom was not taking a 'whee whee'
And my vulva was never a 'you-know-where' or 'down-there'. it was a vagina.

I cringe when I hear parents using other words. I wish that TV would just...blah. Sorry, I don't like TV.


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DarlingBri
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Unfortunately, in many states the child who only knows her vulva as "you know where" is going to be doubly victimised if she is ever sexaully abused.

"You know where" is not acceptable in court, even when allowances are made for children. If she cannot use the appropriate terms, her testimony will be disregarded.

Parents do their children a MASSIVE disservice on so many levels with this inane attitude.


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Lady Moonlight
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quote:
Parents do their children a MASSIVE disservice on so many levels with this inane attitude.

And how I want to strangle somebody every time I come across a table of giggling children in my elementary school library who have discovered (again) our modest collection of art books and are snickering over Gauguin's or Picasso's nudes. "Miz D, there's something nasty in this book!"

So I take a deep breath and count to 5 before replying, "What's nasty about it?"

"There's naked people in here!"

At this point, I usually say, "Well, sweetie, that's an art book, and those are pictures by a very famous artist. If you can't handle it, we have over ten thousand other books in our library, and you're welcome to choose a different one."

(Or, if it's the Picasso book I try boring them to death. Even my meagre knowledge of cubism is usually enough to get them glassy- eyed--very effective for calming them down! )

Mostly, though, I just try to keep an even voice and show them that it's no big deal. That way, they know there's at least one adult in their world who doesn't see any point in getting hysterical over nudity, unlike their parents, from whom they probably learned such hysteria in the first place.


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