Nobody’s really paid any attention to Bernie Sanders this year. Other than he wants free college for all, discharge of all student loan debt, and a Christmas box of free stuff that the Chinese will be happy to pay for.
Bernie has a very interesting record on a number of subjects. Sex is one of them and specifically, sex and children:
This is no joke… scroll down
In 1969 Bernie wrote an article about the ban of the film “I am Curious: A Film in Yellow.” It was a Swedish film that had scenes of people having intercourse. Today we call that “porn,” then it was an “art film.” He wrote an article decrying prudes and said,
“Now, if children go around naked, htey [sic]are liable to see one another’s sex organs, and maybe touch them. Terrible thing! If we bring children up like this, it will probably ruin the whole pornography business, not to mention a large portion of the general economy that makes its money by playing on people’s sexual frustrations.”
Huh? Is Bernie promoting sex with kids? There’s more – scroll down..
And then there’s his theory that sex causes cancer in women. Really.
“…What do you think it really means when 3 doctors, after intense study, write that ‘of the 26 patients (under 51) that developed breast cancer, one was sexually adjusted.’ It means, very bluntly, that the way you bring up your daughter with regards to sexual attitudes may very well determine whether or not she will get breast cancer, among other things…”
I can’t make this stuff up.
Bernie won’t be asked about this stuff, the press would say it’s “too old.” In fact it’s “too weird” and Bernie should be asked if he still believes that sex causes cancer. Not to mention his opinions on sex and children.
Who is Bernie Sanders? The people have a right to know! And less you think it’s just us – here’s a very diverse group of folks asking and reporting on these same questions about “The Bern” —
Mother Jones dug up a 1972 essay that Bernie Sanders wrote for theVermont Freeman, an alternative newspaper. The article, called, “Man-and-Woman,” is a commentary on gender roles. But it’s also caused a stir, as is bound to happen anytime a candidate mentions rape.
If you haven’t been following the hubbub, read on for a rundown of what the controversy is all about.
So what did Bernie Sanders write and what did he say about rape?
The essay by the Vermont senator, who officially kicked off his presidential campaign this week, isn’t long — only a page. Warning: The bit about rape comes at the very beginning, as does some not-totally-safe-for-work language:
“A man goes home and masturbates his typical fantasy. A woman on her knees, a woman tied up, a woman abused.
“A woman enjoys intercourse with her man — as she fantasizes being raped by 3 men simultaneously.
“The man and woman get dressed up on Sunday — and go to Church, or maybe to their ‘revolutionary’ political meeting.
“Have you ever looked at the Stag, Man, Hero, Tough magazines on the shelf of your local bookstore? Do you know why the newspaper with the articles like ‘Girl 12 raped by 14 men’ sell so well? To what in us are they appealing?”
Sanders then goes on to explain his ideas about gender roles and eventually gets at a sharper point — that traditional gender roles help create troubling dynamics in men’s and women’s sex lives.
“Many women seem to be walking a tightrope,” he writes, as their “qualities of love, openness, and gentleness were too deeply enmeshed with qualities of dependency, subservience, and masochism.”
He adds that men, likewise, are confused:
“What is it they want from a woman? Are they at fault? Are they perpetrating this man-woman situation? Are they oppressors?”
One way to read the essay is that Sanders was doing (in a supremely ham-handed way) what journalists do every day: draw the reader in with an attention-getting lede, then get to the meat of the article in the middle. Though he only sticks to his larger point for three paragraphs before getting back to his fictional couple, ending the essay with an imagined conversation:
“And she said, ‘You wanted me not as a woman, or a lover, or a friend, but as a submissive woman, or submissive friend, or submissive lover…’
“And he said, ‘You’re full of ______.’
“And they never again made love together (which they had each liked to do more than anything) or never saw each other one more time.”
What has the Sanders campaign said?
The Sanders campaign quickly tried to distance itself — and the candidate — from the 43-year-old essay. Campaign spokesman Michael Briggs called the essay a “dumb attempt at dark satire in an alternative publication” in an interview with CNN, adding that it “in no way reflects his views or record on women.” He added, “It was intended to attack gender stereotypes of the ’70s, but it looks as stupid today as it was then.”
So what does this say about Sanders’ attitude toward women?
You can draw divergent conclusions from the article itself. On the one hand, he’s talking about liberating people from harmful gender norms. On the other, with his nameless hypothetical “man-and-woman” characters, he also seems to imply that men fantasize about raping women or that women fantasize about being raped.
The 2016 presidential field has been quiet about it, but conservative Erick Erickson jeered at Sanders supporters on Twitter.
National Review writer Charles C.W. Cooke, though, dismissed the essay as insignificant:
“Nobody honestly believes that Bernie Sanders is a sexual pervert or that he is a misogynist or that he intends to do women any harm. Nobody suspects that he harbors a secret desire to pass intrusive legislation or to cut gang rapists a break. Really, there is only one reason that anyone would make hay of this story, and that is to damage the man politically.”
Rather than criticize Sanders for something he wrote long ago, Cooke added, “until I see any sign of actual wrongdoing I’d much prefer to slam Sanders for his dangerous and ridiculous politics than to delve back into his past and embarrass him with a long-forgotten opinion.”
Looking at his political life, it’s true that Sanders’ record shows an ongoing concern for women’s rights. Katie McDonough at left-leaning Salon.com compiled a list of measures Sanders has supported or sponsored to protect women from violence and sexual assault.
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