This is part 2 of a 3 part series. Part 1 can be read here.
by Guest Blogger, Mistress Simone
Along with BDSM as a sexual activity may come social activism, community awareness and political lobbying. These are all goals the original feminists strove for in the Suffrage movement. It was not simply enough to obtain our right to vote. The bigger goal was complete social reform. Suffragists were concerned with all aspects of society from the social to the moral. They sought to bring about the change of society by upholding its most valued principles: honesty, humility, charity and selflessness.
I know a fellow dominant woman who is currently using her leather woman title to actively support the HIV clinical trial studies. Another friend uses her voice to petition all women to have mammograms. Many leather groups actively petition for overall GLBT Rights. Personally, I use my platform to increase awareness about domestic violence within our community and GLBT relationships. If this is not continuing the founding mother’s feminist principles, I do not know what is.
To further explore the feminism connection, the ability to express ourselves however we desire in our sexual lives stems directly from the feminist bra burning fights in the Seventies. These women fought hard for the right to enjoy sex, have an orgasm and stand up and say, “We like sex, we want sex and we are not ashamed of it!” How we devalue their efforts by now saying to other women that they can only enjoy sex how we as a whole group feel is acceptable. We should be ashamed of ourselves! One of our common Leather community principles states that all safe, sane and consensual activities are accepted. The keyword here is consensual. BDSM is about empowering people, especially women, to explore their sexuality in a safe context. We have set community standards for those interested to follow when they first enter the BDSM world. There are BDSM safe houses for those who are in abusive relations and desire to leave them. BDSM educators across the nation seek to inform the general populace about the reality of our lifestyle. Repression of our sexual desires has been shown to do more harm to our psyche than expressing them safely with those who we love (Social Psychology, Aronson, Wilson & Akert, 2002). Freedom of choice is one of the major tenets we base our country on. This right should be extended to those who practice alternative sexualities safely.
Mistress Simone has been a professional and lifestyle domina and sex educator for over 20 years. www.chicago-mistress.com