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The Shallow Portrayal of Alternative Lifestyles -- Editorial

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I am not, by nature, quick to judge. I grew up in the seventies when we were taught to train ourselves out of stereotyping and categorizing people, labeling and judging as we went along.

This is not to say I am incapable of judgment, criticism or negative opinions.
However, I have lived an interesting life and feel all people, as long as they are not hurting themselves or others, should have a similar opportunity to live interesting lives, exploring what they may.

Some things, however, are simply in bad taste. So much of our over sexualized culture emphasizes sex and not personal connections; this means that we’ve lost touch with a great deal of what even causes kinkiness to be exciting in the first place.

Looking around at the bleak landscape of pop culture, icons like Lady Gaga with her constant stream of death, sex, gore and even murder (she kills her lover in at least two of her videos) Rihanna with her “S and M” song now about how whips and chains excite her, and even performing “Rude Boy” with lyrics like, “Come On, rude boy, are you big enough?” at the Kids Choice Awards (which I later regretted allowing my eight year old to watch) seem to reflect and create our culture simultaneously.

In discussing this phenomenon, particularly as it relates to pop music since I am a big music fan and always want to at least know what is current if I’m not listening to it all the time, it dawned on me that I wish there were now radio stations with ratings.

Rihanna’s “S and M” song would be in the Z- rated radio section, Z standing for bizarre, of course.

Alternative lifestyle or not, our sexuality and even kinky sexuality is done a disservice when it is shamelessly paraded around the pop culture stage only to be consumed, digested and regurgitated like so much junk food. Young people uneducated about real sex let alone alternative variations of sexual lifestyles including S and M could be easily confused, and while it’s got a catchy beat, it makes everyone over 30 uncomfortable to the point of madness, particularly if there are children in the car.

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