monosyllabic answers

jsyk if I ever in the past or in the future refer to the ace community treating porn like a “non-issue,” this is the kind of thing I mean.

And whatever “not inherently…” and yes “no ethical consumerism under capitalism,” etc., I mean — I’ve seen more complex answers given to simpler questions before, detailing more than just the one-word technical answer, even if only to go on a little rant about unaccepting straight parents.

All I’m saying is, seems like a lot of ace bloggers make a practice of ignoring the ethics question as if it doesn’t even need to be asked, regardless of what answer you come to.

And maybe you could say that’s beside the point.

And maybe you could say it’s because they don’t want to wade into a fight, or not a fight of that caliber.

I guess.

But if I ever refer back to this, these are the kinds of posts I mean.

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15 responses to “monosyllabic answers

  • Arrela

    Tbh I would probably answer that in the exact same way in such a public place as tumblr, just because. That fight. I do not want to have it. And I am not sure if it is my place to be involved with it. But yes. Definitely a non-great thing, this avoidance.

    • Coyote

      Yeah, like I said, I can understand that. Especially on a big popular general-ace blog like that. But then… where does that conversation happen? Since openly acknowledging ace porn watching habits already happens.

      I know it feels like a murkier question but if aces are going to talk sexual ethics (for sex-personally-had), then it makes sense to me for us to talk porn viewing ethics, too.

  • Siggy

    I’m not on the same side here, so I could be treated as concern trolling. But bringing up porn criticism here seems about as appropriate as bringing up aids when people come out as gay. Aids does need to be talked about, and it’s hard to find opportunities, and yet public health advocates still manage to do it outside of coming-out situations?

    • Coyote

      Uh. Well that’s an interesting comparison. Is there an alternative situation you have in mind? I mean… do you think that conversation being kept separate from ace spaces is sufficient?

      • Siggy

        You linked to a discussion specifically about doubts whether people can watch porn and still be asexual. It seems the more appropriate time to bring it up is when we have moved beyond that conversation. And it’s not like there are zero places where we’ve moved beyond it. For instance, you and most of your readers take it for granted that porn-watching is consistent with being asexual, you can talk about it.

        That’s a thing that people actually do sometimes–bring up aids when I come out. It’s inappropriate because the conversation was about what I am and whether others accept it. Regardless of intentions, talking about aids sounds like a way of being critical of my lifestyle (making baseless assumptions about it), while pretending express concern for my health.

        • Coyote

          Right, the reason I’m not sure I’m on board with that analogy is because I don’t think porn watchers are an oppressed class (categorically), and I don’t think porn criticism is a result of opression of/leveraged against porn viewers in the way that the AIDS crisis manifested. And also the questions I have in mind don’t relate to axes of oppression or individual health.

          • Siggy

            I think there is in fact a history of suppression of non-heterosexual porn. I’d check references for that but I can’t do it at work. Anyway, you can take it from me that among gay men, attitudes towards porn are different. There’s a sense of rebellion, flirting with public decency boundaries because what good have those boundaries ever done for us? And standard porn-criticism is too hetero-centric. There are plenty of problems with gay porn, but they’re not the same as the problems with straight porn. Raising the issue is very difficult.

            But even aside from that, I think it is wrong to analyze it on the level of axes of oppression. Like, do things only ever count as right or wrong if they have something to do with an axis of oppression?

          • Coyote

            Okay. I’m still not inclined to take mentioning porn useage as akin to coming out, barring specifics. But the rest of that’s something to bear in mind, sure.

          • Siggy

            Every time I make an analogy, I regret it and wonder why anyone ever makes an analogy ever.

          • Coyote

            Sorry…? I can’t tell if this means I missed the point.

          • Siggy

            I didn’t mean that in a passive-aggressive way. Sometimes I’m just honestly confused about the point of analogies. I think many of us suffer from the delusion that our arguments are more compelling than they really are, and it goes double for arguments from analogy. As you know, I’ve publicly criticized ace/gay analogies plenty of times myself.

      • Sennkestra

        I think my concern about bringing up the ethics of porn in this very specific context is that responding to a question about whether their ace identity can be valid if they consume porn with a conversation about the ethics of porn would come off as “well, *good* aces don’t watch porn because it’s immoral.” – which easily comes off as “well, actually, your identity is only conditionally valid; you can maybe be a bad ace but not a good ace”. I don’t think it’s intended, but that can be how it comes off.

        I think that where the coming out analogy holds is that these “can I still be ace if…” validation-request tend to come from people who are already in emotionally vulnerable and conflicted frame of mind, and throwing out a “that thing you like is bad [and you should feel bad]*” is probably not the best way to help them. It’s can be a good conversation to have, maybe, the timing is just bad.

        To continue the confusing analogies: consider for example, talking about the sex-shaming and the bashing and stereotyping of non-aces (both heterosexual and otherwise) that occurs in ace communities. It’s an important topic to be talked about, and appropriate in most contexts. But one place it would not be appropriate, for example, would be in response to an ask like “Is it ok to id as ace if I’m completely repulsed by sex and sexual society?” (people also do this all the time, and it’s also not ideal)

        As for when it’s appropriate: I think it’s probably fine anywhere that’s not making a specific questioning individual into a target (intentionally or otherwise). So: general original posts, responses to posts that are about porn in general (not a specific person’s porn use) etc.

        (*even when not intended to make a person feel bad about their own desires, it’s hard to carry out a conversation about consumption of problematic media that doesn’t)

        • Coyote

          “a question about whether their ace identity can be valid if”

          Technically the asker didn’t say they were speaking about themselves. But I do agree that is likely.

          “(*even when not intended to make a person feel bad about their own desires, it’s hard to carry out a conversation about consumption of problematic media that doesn’t)”

          Color me unconcerned.

          “But one place it would not be appropriate, for example, would be in response to an ask like ‘Is it ok to id as ace if I’m completely repulsed by sex and sexual society?’ (people also do this all the time, and it’s also not ideal)”

          Actually, I think someone saying they’re “repulsed by sexual society” and asking a question about it could be an appropriate time to discuss some of the issues there, although I definitely don’t like the way it’s usually done. Depends on how the question is presented, I guess.

          “As for when it’s appropriate: I think it’s probably fine anywhere that’s not making a specific questioning individual into a target (intentionally or otherwise).”

          That does sound like a better idea. ex. those “you can still be asexual if you’re X” lists posts. I may come back with one of those when I see one next.

          • Sennkestra

            Maybe I’m just confused, but were you hoping for more conversations about “the ethics of consuming porn” in general or was this specifically “the ethics of identifying as ace even if you consume porn”? Because if it’s the first, I’m not sure why it would need to be tied to the topic of whether consuming porn invalidates asexual identity?

            I feel like the best way to go about the subject would be to just be make an original post/send an independent ask to people about it, because that way you just don’t have to worry about the issue of “is it going to seem like I’m trying to invalidate the identities of aces who consume porn” at all.

          • Coyote

            The first one.

            “Because if it’s the first, I’m not sure why it would need to be tied to the topic of whether consuming porn invalidates asexual identity?”

            It doesn’t.

            “I feel like the best way to go about the subject would be to just be make an original post/send an independent ask to people about it,”

            Yes, probably.

            “because that way you just don’t have to worry about the issue of ‘is it going to seem like I’m trying to invalidate the identities of aces who consume porn’ at all.”

            I’m… already not worried about that at all. I think your point was to convince me to be?

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