Perhaps you’ve seen the longer article on my Facebook page; Madeline posted it there earlier this week. It’s about how a female student at Duke made a PowerPoint presentation about her sexual encounters throughout college and is now being hailed as some sort of feminist.
In actuality, there was nothing inherently feminist about her behavior.
Yes, she had a lot of casual sex. That in itself does not define feminism at all. She was used by these men, none of whom seemed to have any respect for her.
Respect is the key to this sexual equality idea. Without respect, there can be no sexual equality. Even if someone is under the impression that they’ve somehow been sexually liberated by their attempts to chronicle their college days and rate the men they’ve had sex with, they’re not equal. This was a sad attempt at taking back power, power that Karen Owen never had. Why no power? No respect.
Karen Owen, the girl who made the PowerPoint, was not engaged in equal sexual activity. She was used by men and then tossed aside. One guy wouldn’t even open the door for her to give her back her earrings, instead telling her that he’d leave them outside his door. Instead of being wildly offended, hurt, disappoined, even, she just gave him a lower score on her list.
None, apparently, as evidenced by her PowerPoint presentation. She might be blind, but it’s so obvious. Her own words have sold her as nothing more than a drunk girl desperate for love but looking in all the wrong places. I don’t go to bars so that I can stand in corners and take shots and wait for men to prey on me. I go to enjoy myself, regardless of whether or not there are going to be men there.
There are a ton of definitions for “feminist,” but Karen Owen fits none of them and I’m ashamed that women everywhere are proud of her, praising her actions. One woman quoted in the first article says that she wishes she could have been as brave as Karen when she was younger.
I hesitated to use this word earlier, but I’m so annoyed that I’m just going to have to call her “slutty.” No part of her experiences could have been positive for women. One nights stands with thirteen men? It’s not the number that bothers me, it’s the fact that she seems so okay with the way that she was treated. It’s one thing to be actively engaged in a female-positive sex life (which can include multiple partners) so long as proper consideration and consent are given.
And the article goes on to blame alcohol for the way that women are acting. Ha, women? Alcohol? Maybe we are abusing alcohol at 4 times the rate we used to (men’s abuse has remained stagnant) but that’s all part of equality and we’ve got to accept it. I don’t think that our drinking is making us more sexually pliable by any means.
We’re trying to level with men. But we’re not succeeding, certainly not if we continue to let ourselves be used the way that Karen Owen was.
I’m out of time and will have to edit this later, but here’s what I put on Facebook:
Wow – read the article and the PowerPoint. I’m incredibly annoyed by both.
No part of me thinks that her sexual behavior should be linked in any way with feminism or equality. She’s no Tucker Max (don’t get me started on him). She’s just som…e dumb girl looking for love in all the places.
She’s no feminist, no poster child for sexual liberation. No one should be championing her cause, putting her up on a pedestal of bravery. There’s nothing wrong with being half sex kitten, half soccer mom, but there is a problem when there’s no respect behind all that and Karen Owen obviously doesn’t have a strong-willed bone in her body.
It should be noted that when you are intoxicated, you can’t legally consent to sex.
And the whole rough sex bit – everyone has rough sex. Rough sex done right won’t leave marks. Yeah, dominance has its place but that place is not in public. It’s not at a college bar and it’s most definitely not in the bedrooms of these athletes. Clumsy attempts at masculinity should not be allowed to give rough sex/dominance-submission play a bad name.
If I engaged in sexual activity (I was going to write “fucked” but my grandma will read it) with a man who wouldn’t even open the door to let me have my earrings back, I’d be beyond furious and I’d reevaluate who I was banging. But Karen Owen doesn’t even seem to think that’s a huge problem. Yeah, it results in a lower score, but it should have resulted in a swift kick to the nuts as well. (Yeah, I just advocated for violence, whatever. You can send Tucker Max after me if you want.)
She’s obviously intelligent enough to go to Duke (I wouldn’t go to Duke if they paid me) so she should have been intelligent enough to make better decisions – that being said, better decisions are sometimes not fucking everything that moves and demanding respect from dudes you bang. The whole home-from-the-bar-and-straight-into-bed move is done, it’s played out.
Grow up, Karen Owen, and keep you sexual exploits to yourself. It’s one thing to be sexually liberated with a pinch of slutty, but it’s downright embarrassing to have no self-respect. Maybe discretion comes with maturity.