The Mind of James Donahue

A Word About Sex

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Why "Sex" Remains a
Dirty Word in America

By James Donahue

Nothing occupies our minds, our actions, our personal neurosis and our social lives more than sex.

Sexual intercourse between a consenting man and woman is probably the most desirable, most pleasurable and most spiritual part of the human experience. And there lies the rub. In the United States, it remains a forbidden topic in many social circles. When it is discussed among the boys in the locker rooms, the comedians on late night cable television, and the ladies during their afternoon luncheons, the stories become bawdy and perverted.

Our failure to be open and frank about sex has created a nation of sexually frustrated and mentally twisted people. I doubt if there is another country in the world that can match ours per capita for the number of rapes, sex murders, child assaults and wife beatings that occur daily. Our cities teem with shops that sell sex in one lewd form or another. The rate of teen-age pregnancies is too high and the spread of venereal disease is at such an epidemic level that even the prudes who prefer not to talk about sex are starting to promote the use of condoms. It seems that the only type of sexual act that gets public discussion is homosexuality, and that is because a portion of society believes it is wrong and wants to put a stop to it.

Attempts to change this social perversion and bring light on this subject also are under assault. The culprit is always the church, which treats sex as something reserved only for married couples and only necessary for procreation. That humans find great pleasure in sex seems to have a lot to do with the "sin" factor linked to it. For this reason, the Roman Catholic Church has consistently prohibited the use of any form of birth control. Church leaders, who claim to abstain and remain celibate, apparently regard it as sinful to find any pleasure in the sexual act. This twisted way of thinking has been largely responsible for world overpopulation and if is allowed to continue, may lead to the ultimate extinction of the human race.

(One would think the problem could be solved if, instead of circumcisions, we could give our boys [and girls?] operations to completely remove all sensual pleasure from sex. And so much the better if we could add a little pain to the sex act so that the continuation of the species would be accomplished through personal determination rather than a lustful accident.)

The church has battled sex education classes in the public schools from the day the concept first began. The church attacked a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling that Congress went too far in requiring cable television systems to fully scramble sexually-oriented television channels. We are constantly being fed propaganda about the evil Internet chat rooms where sex crazed madmen hit on young children with thoughts of evil deeds.

The argument is usually for the "protection of the children" from what is described as "hardcore depictions of sex" that can now get into any home with a television set or computer attached to the Internet.

I have to wonder just what it is we are protecting our children from? Is sex, the natural reproduction process of the human race, such an ugly thing that we are ashamed to admit we practice it? Why shouldn't children be allowed to freely observe the open
expression of love between a man and woman so they have a healthy understanding of sexual differences and the magic process of producing children? Where and when did someone in our past decide that sex should be covered up and hidden in a dark and secluded place?

Americans are among the most sexually suppressed people in the world. Our insistence on hiding sex and making it some dirty thing that is not openly discussed is driving people to direct their sexual energies into a strange variety of dark corners.

What man hasn't secretly had his cache of pornographic photographs, films and magazines hidden under his mattress or in his bottom dresser drawer? And what child has not enjoyed exploring his father's "secret" hiding places to see the latest treasure tucked away there?

So who are we kidding other than ourselves? Every healthy individual has a burning interest in sex. The fact that our church controlled society makes this natural act something "sinful" that must not be mentioned in mixed company, only makes it that much more tempting. And who really believes our children don't know what sex is all about?

I was barely a toddler, still riding a three-wheeler in my neighborhood, when a neighbor girl showed me what she looked like. Then, as I was growing up, hardly a week went by that the children in the neighborhood didn't gather somewhere, either in somebody's garage or in the attic of an old barn to study human anatomy. And I recall how another boy and I pooled our coins and spent most of a day, daring one another to buy our first "girlie" magazine. I ended up taking the dare and was amazed when the store clerk sold me this evil document without blinking an eye. As long as I had the money, the magazine was mine to have.

After that, we boys spent hours studying adult female anatomy, which turned out to be much more interesting than the appearance of the children in our neighborhood. In those days the best you got was a fuzzy black and white photo of a woman's bare bosom and an occasional rump, but it was enough for us.

I have met people who grew up in families who lived in such poor conditions, the entire family shared one or two rooms. When people lived cramped like that, there were no secrets. The children, who saw the sex act performed quite openly, seemed to grow up with a healthier attitude about sex than kids who emerged from the "more protected" type of environment. What I didn't already know, I learned from children reared from these poor and crowded homes. Thus, by the time we reached puberty we thought we knew everything we needed to know about the secret sex life of our parents.

What frustrated me was the way in which the adults around us handled the subject of sex. When I was in the Fifth Grade, I remember being herded with all the boys in my class into a room where we were told about the evils of masturbation. The next day all the girls were herded into the same room where I suspect they were not only told about masturbation, but also warned about the evil penis. (Persevering the age-old battle of the sexes.

Sex education was introduced to the public schools at about the time I was in high school. I remember a female teacher in a biology class who tried to include the subject as part of the course. Because of implanted thought patterns, it was an extremely difficult time for everybody in that class, including the teacher. She struggled through it, making daily presentations of male and female anatomy and carefully explaining, in as professional a voice as she could muster, how the sex organs were used for reproduction. On the day she explained how the male ejaculated his sperm into the female vagina, one of the boys in our class fainted dead away. That was how intense it was.

During the 1960s the hippies were openly condemned for their belief that free and open sexual expression and communal living were a preferred lifestyle to the type the rest of us were living. I was working as a reporter in Kalamazoo in those days and met a lot of practicing hippies. In spite of pre-established prejudices, I really liked the hippies I met. I was attracted to their philosophy, which was a call for total freedom.

That was probably when I started understanding just what freedom is, and why the so-called "free" life the rest of us were living in America wasn't free at all.

Looking back on all of this now with a more objective eye, I realize what was happening. The social prohibition against open and free sexual expression has been part of a plot to implant feelings of guilt about the enjoyment that comes with an orgasm. This prevents us from learning that a good healthy sexual relationship between a man and woman can help achieve a higher state of consciousness. This, if allowed to continue unchecked, threatens to make us aware that God exists within us, not outside. Heaven forbid!

The church has spread its poison well. The brainwashing has been so skillfully done that many men and women have gone through their whole lives never being able to enjoy healthy sex. They are plagued by implanted guilt. Men are flocking to their doctors these days to get the new anti-impotence pill Viagra because they no longer get natural erections. Many women have gone through life in what has been secretly known as a frigid state, unable to enjoy sex or experience an orgasm. It was never meant to be like this.

I refer to Aleister Crowley's "Book of the Law" when I quote a favorite passage: "The word of Sin is Restriction: Oh man! Refuse not thy wife, if she will . . . There is no bond that can unite the divided but love: all else is a curse."

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