As a 57 year old, never married single guy, there are times that i’d prefer to not be single. I’ve grown exceptionally comfortable with being alone and it’s probably stunted my growth to a degree. Not that being involved with someone guarantees some sort of personal growth but having to build and maintain a friendship/ relationship is something that demands more of a person than being alone all of the time.
For the record, i haven’t been in a significant relationship for more than ten years now and haven’t had a date since 2017. When i say that there are times that i’d prefer to not be single, it’s not as though i’m prowling the bars or trying to have hookups. While i can’t guarantee that my next relationship (should it ever happen) will end in marriage, any sort of connection i have with a woman/ women will be based on mutual attraction and some degree of friendship.
After a 2 or more year hiatus from OK Cupid, i decided to re-activate my account and a few days later and much to my surprise, i received a ‘superlike’. A superlike is given to users once a week and it’s to be used to let someone know they really clicked with your profile. I hadn’t ever received a superlike to my knowledge and it was a little bit flattering.
Oh, before i forget, i’m not going to link OK Cupid. Over the years, OK Cupid has gone from a decent singles site to one that tries to emulate a phone app via a web interface. What i WILL do, though, is to link to the subreddit: /r/okcupid. Once upon a time, they had a decent interface, attracted a wide array of users and had a somewhat overpriced but still justifiable subscription rate. Now it’s a trash interface, an ever dwindling number of users, a hostility to demands for change, spam from bots and what can only charitably be called exorbitant rates for premium access.
Back to my story, though.
In the way profiles go, it was a solid match. Overlapping skepticism (read: atheist/ freethinker), political values, pro choice and from what i could tell, similar sexual preferences.
But there was the mention of one name that really stood out to me- and not for any good reasons: Andrea Dworkin.
I’m not going to go into Dworkin other than to say she garnered some mainstream attention in the early to mid 80s (i think) because she was militant, combative and staked out positions that demanded women not express their sexuality be it as a sex worker or in porn. She was a zealot and as all zealots go, she faded from attention relatively fast.
I was definitely surprised to see such an obsolete name brought up on a users profile. It would be the same as if i said i admired guys like Andrew Tate, Ralph Reed or that Crowder guy with the overly ambitious pubic beard and weird fascination with diapers and pedophilia. It’s beyond concerning- it’s a huge fucking red flag.
Still, i liked just about everything else in her profile and she was moderately attractive. Let’s chat and see if we can meet in person.
We’re bouncing messages back and forth and i feel it’s kind of important to tell her that i’m not anti porn. I’m anti exploitive porn and not a fan of porn that depicts degradation and/or excessive humiliation, especially if it’s presented in a way that implies it’s not consensual.
As i expected, she says it’s a deal killer, which i expected. I asked what her objection to porn was and she said, “All porn leads to rape.” And that’s an exact quote.
You know how it is when you wish you could go back and say something instead of what you actually said? I really wish i could have asked her, “Really? You really think so? You really think that the thousands of women posting to the NSFW subreddits on Reddit and the thousands, if not TENS of thousands that have a porn business on OnlyFans are now prowling the streets and bars looking to rape someone?”
Zealots will never see how ridiculous they are. No one has the right to tell a woman how she expresses her sexuality or with who any more than anyone has a right to do the same to a man. And while this is a very simple concept for most people, the zealot/ fundamentalist will only see someone in control of their expression- be it through music, writing, dance or even… yes, even through porn, as something to police and deprive everyone from being able to enjoy or participate in.