Darklady’s Wonderful World Of Sleaze
Although I work from home I have been sighted in many a strange place – but none stranger than Usenet. Usenet, as I may have mentioned previously, is a vast and uncivilized segment of the Internet where great minds and those who think they have great minds meet to do battle on topics both sacred and profane. Although some try valiantly to fight the good fight without invective or false accusation, when push comes to shove – which it nearly always does – language gets rough and ad hominems fly like poisoned arrows. Walking into this war zone is always an adventure, perhaps especially for women.
Being an openly, aggressively, and articulately sex positive woman ensures that it will be an even bigger adventure.
As anyone who’s visited my website and read my hate mail knows, there are any number of people with email accounts who think I need to get right with their god or gods. For some reason, the idea that everyone has the inborn right and responsibility to determine what path their life, their loves, and their passions will follow really offends and enrages some people.
Ultimately, for all their protestations to the contrary, the fundamental philosophy of those who are easily offended by the aforementioned is that people can’t be trusted or allowed to think for themselves. However, people long dead who claimed to get their information from On High can be trusted to think not only for themselves, but for all people who have lived, are alive now, or will ever live.
Call me skeptical – it will be one of the kinder things I’ve been called – but that seems more than a little unlikely.
Recently, just such a person accused me of living in a “world of sleaze.” He’d previously accused me of being a lesbian and old enough to be a member of the AARP, so you’ll have to judge for yourself how accurate his insights into me, my life, and my motivations are in this case.
When I think of a “world of sleaze,” I envision a 1940’s noir style landscape where people lead furtive, fearful, and false lives, afraid that at any moment they will be betrayed and their true selves will be revealed for all to see. Pot boilers and B-movies indicate that an outraged, if hypocritical, society will then demand full confession of their shameful sins followed by intense repentance and very possibly death. Such is not the world that I live in, although it may very well be the world in which my accuser most likes to fantasize about my living in. In a case like this, the accusation says more about him than it does about me.
My world, in spite of my evocative writing and scene name, is a place of light, where people strive to live open, fearless, honest lives that serve as protection against blackmail. My world sees the intrinsic value of all people and seeks to enhance it with sincere and respectful investigation, education, fellowship, communication, and understanding – if not always agreement. Mistakes are to be expected and are not called “sins.” Repentance comes not from fear of retribution but from a genuine desire for improvement and a return to positive intimacy.
If this is a “world of sleaze,” then I can only hope that more people will join me there. If giving voice to truth, honesty, equity, respect, learning, pragmatism, and community health via personal inventory and improvement are “sleazy” ideals then I embrace them proudly and can only hope that an ever increasing number of men and women will do likewise.
— Originally published in Playtime Magazine —