We’ve all been making lots of jokes the past few days, ever since Christine O’Donnell was chosen as the GOP nominee for Joe Biden’s old Senate seat in Delaware, based on the fact that back in the 1990’s, O’Donnell said some fairly insane things decrying masturbation, gays, fun, etc. Presumably she also does not like the beach or puppies. But Marcy Wheeler points out that, all joking aside, O’Donnell’s anti-masturbation beliefs are actually just part in parcel of the larger fundamentalist anti-sex, anti-choice, and, by extension, anti-gay worldview:
[I]t’s the logical extension of the conservative assault on reproductive freedom. Sure, most conservative efforts to regulate reproduction are targeted exclusively at women (not even on their doctors). Because they bear wombs, after all, it’s a lot easier to regulate and politicize the sexual conduct of women.
But the logic is always the same–and it’s precisely the “logic” O’Donnell gave for her opposition to masturbation. (And, incidentally, the same logic the Prop 8 defenders used in their case in San Francisco.) It’s about ensuring that all sexual enjoyment–all of it–is tied to procreation within marriage.
So while she may be a nut, she’s really only advocating for the same oppressive treatment of men as mainstream Republicans advocate for women of child-bearing age.
These people want to regulate every aspect of everyone else’s sex life, basically. They don’t like it when women have full control over their bodies, they don’t like it when gays flout their gender hierarchy (it’s not about gender “norms”), and they don’t like it when either men or women take matters into their own hands and take care of their own needs.
Okay, everybody can go back to making masturbation jokes again.