Hard core misrepresention

If there's one thing I can't stand, it's when people mischaracterize what is said on this blog. The only thing worse than that is when such mischaracterizations are used to harm someone else.

Which brings me to the topic of my latest rant. While the subject can be considered funny in a way (because it is funny) in another way it's not funny at all.

This is sometimes a humor blog, and sometimes a serious blog. I engage in satire on a regular basis, and whenever possible I try not to take myself (or other bloggers) too deadly seriously. I try my damnedest to avoid insulting people or engaging in profanity or obscenity, although as I admit, I am not perfect.

But when another blogger's job worthiness is being attacked (in the course of a threat to report him to the authorities!) because of "a picture of two dogs having sex," well, I must protest.

It is obvious that the complainant (who claims to be a teacher named "Sandy Smith") did not read the post she is mischaracterizing, did not look at the pictures very carefully, and hasn't much understanding of the mechanics of canine sexual intercourse. The pictures show nothing more than ordinary "humping" behavior, which is not "dogs having sex" and which any dog owner will attest goes on all the time. If "humping" constitutes "having sex," what does that suggest about the many dogs that will hump human legs if they get the chance? Is that bestiality? If Sandy Smith's definition prevails, I guess so.

While I may have done so in an overly cute manner, I made it quite clear that no penetration ever occurred. Indeed, it would not have occurred, for penetration can only occur if the following conditions are present:

  • an unneutered male dog;
  • an unneutered female dog; and then,
  • only during the receptive period of her heat cycle -- a window of opportunity of just a few days which arises only twice a year.
  • the two dogs must actually copulate during this period by "tying up" together -- an immobilizing condition for both animals which usually lasts for twenty to thirty minutes.
  • I made it very clear that sexual intercourse did not, and could not, have taken place between Coco and Tristan, and I don't think that any reasonable person could construe the pictures as depictions of canine sex -- much less pornography or obscenity.

    And even if I had featured pictures of dogs having actual intercourse (or "tied up"), would that have really been inappropriate for teenagers?

    MORE: I have to admit, stuff like this (the "Breasts not Bombs" demonstration which so offended "Sandy Smith"), is pretty tough to look at. As I've said before, disgusting displays like that make me want to vomit. But Darren was objecting to it, for God's sake. (It's no more pornographic than a medical textbook on pathology.)

    Adults only are encouraged but not required to read a standard definition of sexual intercourse which follows below.

    UPDATE: Via the Carnival of Education, I see that another teacher (in The Daily Grind) has weighed in on Darren's predicament. :

    Frankly, I am tired of living in a world where we cannot speak if it doesn't match-up with what others are looking for. It doesn't matter to me whether you are religious or not, politically to the right or to the left; we need to be able to have a voice of affirmation or dissent.

    As teachers, we should be a representation of the world around us. Our administrators and central offices should not expect mindless lemmings. Our students and parents should not expect us to be the same as them.

    If free thinking teachers are fired for speaking their thoughts in a blog, it does not bode well for teaching.

    (Or blogging.)

    The Discovery Health web site offers the following fairly standard definition of what constitutes sexual intercourse:

    Sexual intercourse, or coitus, refers in a strict biological sense to the insertion of the male's penis into the female's vagina for the purpose of reproduction. Sexual intercourse is found among all mammalian species.

    Intercourse has traditionally been viewed as the natural endpoint of all sexual contact between a man and a woman. However, the meaning of the term has been broadened in recent years to include a wider range of behaviors and a wider set of motivations and intentions.

    In both popular and professional usage, intercourse now labels at least three different sex acts, two of which are not directly tied to conceiving a child. These three types of intercourse are: vaginal intercourse, involving vaginal penetration by the penis, possibly to the point of male ejaculation and female orgasm; oral intercourse, involving oral caress of the sex organs (male or female), possibly to the point of orgasm; and anal intercourse, involving insertion of the male's penis into his partner's anus. The latter two of these behaviors may be the endpoints of a sexual encounter or they may be acts of foreplay leading to each other or to vaginal intercourse.

    Moreover, intercourse is not limited to partnerships between individuals of opposite genders. Same-sex or homosexual encounters, involving oral or anal penetration or stimulation, are also referred to as sexual intercourse. Some also include digital (use of fingers or hands) intercourse or mutual masturbation as yet another form of intercourse.

    Humping is not sexual intercourse. If practiced between humans in public, it could at most be considered lewd behavior.

    But dogs? They're not legally capable of being lewd.

    posted by Eric on 08.03.05 at 12:02 PM







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    Comments

    This reminds me all too much of the time last year when some female psychiatrist tried to get the great professor and blogger Nick Packwood (Ghost of a Flea) fired for posting pictures of beautiful women on his site. I'm against that. I still have that lovely picture (of Dawn, I think of her as) bookmarked right next to Up With Beauty!

    As to the definition of heterosexual intercourse, I have come to think of it as an imitation of tribadism. Transcendental Femocracy. Conservative Lesbian Individualist Theology.

    Which latter, of course, will hereinafter be referred to in the form of an acronym, right?

    CGHill   ·  August 4, 2005 5:28 PM

    "A puritan is a person who pours righteous indignation into the wrong things."
    - G.K.Chesterton

    I thought the pics were sweet!

    Aristomedes   ·  August 4, 2005 7:15 PM

    Coco's Literally Into Tribadism!

    Eric Scheie   ·  August 4, 2005 11:21 PM

    As happens so often when I read your blog, I agree with your indignation completely. Then again, you support *my* view!

    Glad to see so many people commenting that Sandy has gone to an extreme. She hasn't commented on my site in days, which means she's either carrying through on her "threat" or has decided that discretion is the better part of valor.

    BTW, the people in the Breasts Not Bombs protest could have used a little discretion, too....

    Darren   ·  August 5, 2005 6:22 PM

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