Saturday, August 23, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Sexual openness versus sexual degradation

By
From page A13 | November 28, 2012 |

Feminist author Naomi Wolf argues in a column on cnn.com that the real culprits of the Gen. David Petraeus/Paula Broadwell affair are the federal Patriot and Espionage acts.

In “Sexual Privacy Under Threat in a Surveillance Society,” Wolf writes that without these, the affair would have been left private, and we would all have been better off if it had. Her stated fear is that as a country we are losing our “sexual privacy” to government oversight and that’s devastating to the human condition.

Wolf is the author of “Vagina: A New Biography” that “radically reframes how we understand the vagina.” Partly because of people like her we already have lost a sense of sexual privacy, and with it sexual dignity, in our culture. Thanks to the so-called sexual revolution, who needs to worry about the government getting at our secrets – as if it cares – when we offer them up so freely ourselves and to people we don’t even know?

I wish there were sexual privacy. I wish other moms I’m barely acquainted with wouldn’t casually share with me things like they’ve found someone terrific to stay with their kids for the nights they spend at a boyfriend’s house. I don’t want to walk into Abercrombie & Fitch with my teens and find poster-sized depictions of adolescents on the verge of copulating. I’m not interested in public declarations of anyone’s sexual orientation. I’d rather not read from another middle-aged woman writing a column for CNN that in her dating life she’s “sexted” with boyfriends and her grown daughters saw the messages. Isn’t that charming? It’s the daughters “busting” the mom. Hee-hee.

And I really don’t want to hear any more conversations, whether on television or loudly from the other corner of the coffee shop, about how one’s sex life compares or doesn’t to “Fifty Shades of Grey.”

This list is endless.

I am no prude, and I’m certainly not talking here about intimate, open conversations with close friends, trusted confidantes or romantic partners. I’m talking about throwing up details about what should be our private sexual lives, our very selves, as if we are all living real-time episodes of “Sex and the City” in front of everyone we meet.

As my mother would say, “Is nothing sacred?”

Wolf and her feminist sisters helped usher in a society that cherishes sexual openness. But where it supposedly puts an end to sexual repression, it largely replaces it with an enslavement to a degraded sexual culture, one in which women are today far more sexually objectified than Sophia Loren ever was.

Our sexual lives should be private, not in the sense of being secret but in the sense of being sacred. Instead, Wolf and her feminist friends have encouraged women in particular to treat their sexual selves as casually as yesterday’s news, and, sadly, this often means sharing their sexual lives as if they are today’s headlines. Openness is everywhere, but dignity is gone. This debases our culture, especially women.

Wolf is wrong about the specifics of the Petraeus/Broadwell affair. As CIA director, Petraeus could have been blackmailed with such information with huge implications for our national security. So it’s right – and, anyway, probably inevitable – that it was revealed.

In contrast, when Wolf writes in her CNN commentary that “(I)t is hard to imagine fully what the loss of sexual privacy means to private life – and to the human condition,” she has no idea how right she is.

Betsy Hart’s latest book is “From The Hart: A Collection of Favorite Columns on Love, Loss, Marriage (and Other Extreme Sports).” Reach her through hartmailbox-mycolumn@yahoo.com.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Vallejo celebrates cultural diversity

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
2 shot Friday night in Fairfield

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A1

 
Groups receive honors for going green

By Brad Stanhope | From Page: A2

 
Adult literacy efforts in need of volunteers

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
‘Nuttin But Fun!’ theme of 2015 Dixon May Fair

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Badges pinned for new Fairfield, Vacaville firefighters

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3 | Gallery

County looks for Solano centenarians

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A3

 
Brown signs two bills by Wolk

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4

 
Brain tumors are not all alike

By Scott Anderson | From Page: B8

Weather for Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B10

 
Suisun City police log: Aug. 21, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

Fairfield police log: Aug. 21, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
.

US / World

Parents had hoped to negotiate with Foley captors

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Interpol seeks clues to Thai ‘baby factory’

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

US won’t let borders hamper fight vs. extremists

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
New Obama birth control fixes for religious groups

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 3 Comments

Lawn removal in parched California draws fine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 3 Comments

 
Passengers leave trove at San Francisco airport

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Couple charged in alleged odometer rollback scheme

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
DUI arrest is California Democrats’ latest blow

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

IDs of men found shot in adjacent yards released

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Ice bucket challenge may change nonprofit world

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

New fear: What happens in Ferguson if no charges?

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
Gov’t warns US retailers about hacking software

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Questions, answers about Missouri grand juries

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Days Obama, predecessors spent on vacation

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

Obama taking less vacation, but too much for some

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
West condemns Russia over convoy to Ukraine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

UN: death toll from Syrian civil war tops 191,000

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Hamas kills 18 suspected informers to deter leaks

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Mosque attack kills 64 in Iraq, Sunnis halt talks

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Ebola spreads in Nigeria; Liberia has 1,000 deaths

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

.

Opinion

 
Boxer, Feinstein: Different routs in backing Israel

By Thomas Elias | From Page: A8

Somebody deserves to be fired

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 1 Comment

 
Cheers, jeers for the week of Aug. 17-23, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8

.

Living

Community Calendar: Aug. 23, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Today in History: Aug. 23, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

A ‘gifted’ family member doesn’t have a degree, can’t keep a job

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A7

 
Horoscopes: Aug. 23, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A7

.

Entertainment

Parole denied yet again for Lennon’s killer

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
Ebola outbreak revives interest in ‘The Hot Zone’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B9

 
.

Sports

Avila remains undefeated after opponent throws in towel

By Marcus Lomtong | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Gray pitches into 9th, A’s top Angels

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Panik, Giants end Nationals’ 10-game win streak

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Offense struggles, Raiders fall to Packers 31-21

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Blaney steals 1 from Kyle Busch on final restart

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

US picks 12-man roster for basketball World Cup

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
New, longer grass laid at 49ers’ Levi’s Stadium

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Versatile Martin looks to earn 49ers roster spot

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Davis’ accomplishments still inspire despite loss

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Goodes leads Boeing Classic by 1 stroke

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Ryu has 66, leads by 5 at Canadian Women’s Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Scott, Tringale tied for the lead at Barclays

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Chevrolet wins IndyCar manufacturers championship

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Harvick wins Bristol pole; 5th of this season

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
This date in sports history for Aug. 23, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
.

Business

Jell-O can’t stop slippery sales slide

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Fitbit to Schumer: We don’t sell personal data

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

Yellen: Job market makes Fed hesitant on rate hike

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Lawsuits challenge FAA drone, model aircraft rules

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

At Jackson Hole, central bankers eye varying goals

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Obituaries

Paul Nolin

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Sandra “Sandy” Caldwell Garton

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Mary Louise Loveall

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
.

Home Seller 08/23/14

Real estate transactions for Aug. 23, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR2

Average US 30-year mortgage rate at 4.10 percent

By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR3