Free love is not terrorism. Free love is not a crime. Free love is not sex slavery. Free love is not prostitution.
Love is love. Love is lust. Love is adventure. Love is excitement. Love is sadness love is happiness love is pathos love is ethos love is empathy and love is so fucking sexy.
In case you haven’t been paying attention, there’s a dark underbelly to modern MAGA life that has nothing to do with racism, transphobia, xenophobia or covert Russian subversion of Western democratic principles.
Welcome to the War on Sex. It’s an undeclared war, and it’s ruining my fucking life.
SESTA/FOSTA's goals, curbing the facilitation of sex trafficking in the US and worldwide, are noble. However, they are being used by a no longer dormant religious conservative far right wing to characterize online sex as deviant, criminal and unsavory to American life.
Wow. What a novel political and social stance: lumping the LGBT community in with child molesters and pimps. The last time this happened in the mainstream political realm, it was probably the period from the 70s with Anita Bryant to the early 90s with Pat Buchanan.
At the 1992 Republican National Convention, Pat Buchanan said we have to take the cities back from “the perverts and the thugs.” He meant the LGBT community and the African-American community. Imagine a city without these communities.
I think his speech would have sounded better in the original German. We cannot go back there. We cannot go back underground into the dank Cabarets of a world in which Hitler’s puritanical nationalist idealism was gaining speed.
I remember queer life before the Internet. I remember subterranean life before Lawrence v. Texas. Friday nights were fun, but overall, it was a lot more arduous. It was dangerous. And it was mortally frightening. Kind of like life during wartime.
You would think that our President, who gets spanked by pornstars and grabs nonconsensual pussy on planes, trains, buses and automobiles, would be more sex positive. He is, of course, as long as the hero of the nasty, erotic story is him, or someone who looks like him. Or, you know, on an open-minded day, anyone who conforms to gender or orientation norms as he does. So masc.
This WOS bullshit, led by a Vice President who is so tortured by sex and his own infernal sexuality that he can’t even enjoy a grande nonfat half-caf latte with a married female friend, is, so far, disproportionally affecting the queer and sex worker communities. Don’t even touch that Frappucino, queen. Jesus is watching.
So we wait as, one by one, they fall. First Craigslist said that we can no longer solicit consensual, con-commercial sexual (OR ROMANTIC!) encounters through their beautiful and oh so user-friendly website. Shortly thereafter, many of the less than mainstream sites where lonely gentlemen might go to get it done just disappeared in the middle of the night, like some kind of Soviet mole on a late but great season of the X Files.
So, what can we do?
We cannot go back underground. We cannot leave our sexy, not quite ready for primetime preciousness for the comments section. We should BE the fucking headline. We should support each other’s punny, perverted attention-grabbing content like we supported Madonna when she went on Nightline in 1990 to defend her “Justify My Love” video in that AWFUL top. (Is it Lacroix? I like it if it’s Lacroix.) It was a beautiful moment. Queens were united.
So, write your congresswoman. Write your local graffiti artist. Write your pornographer and your local sex goddess facilitators. Tell them to keep the faith. Tell them not to be intimidated by overbroad, reactionary legislation that carries an anti free love agenda that also conflates all sex work with child sex slavery.
We are not criminals, but we are subversives. Some of us, at least. And there’s nothing wrong with that. And even if there is, it is NOT illegal.
And even if it is illegal, it won’t be for long. Remember when you were smoking some good good in your early twenties and some genius passed you the puff puff and said, “Man, pot should be legal!” I never thought it would happen, but it did.
Keep the faith. Stay vigilant. Stay engaged. Stay combative. Stay informed And most of all, stay sexy.
Scott King is an Atlanta-based writer, analyst, and political consultant. He eats a carbon-based diet and does not care if you are masc.