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Arts & Culture

Savage Love: Sluts and such

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P.S. Thanks for the very sweet postscript!

P.P.S. Assuming Jerry didn’t leave your intimate items out in plain view, UIC, that means you snooped. If you have the kind of friendship with Jerry where you can confront him about his theft, admit to your snooping, and have a laugh about it—and maybe put the lube and cock ring to good use—leave him a cheeky note in the drawer where you found your intimate items: “I see you like my cock ring. Let me know if you want to see me in it.”

I’ve been reading your column for years, and I feel like I should know your answer by now, but I’m stumped. I’m a man. Recently I discovered Omegle, the online chat site that allows you to “talk to strangers,” and I’ve had some fun posing as a lesbian. I would talk to women my own age (mid-20s) about life, love and, of course, sex. Many times, like 99 percent of the time, these chats included role play or sexy chat. We would both be masturbating on our respective ends, and from what I can tell, I am pretty good at writing this stuff. I want to be clear that this was just chatting. I wouldn’t trade pics, since I’m missing the goods the women I’m chatting with are interested in, and it’s certainly not fair for me to accept pics without being able to provide them. I don’t keep in touch with my chat partners after our chat is over, and I am pretty sure everyone is satisfied.
Here is my question: Am I an asshole for doing this? I made a post on Reddit to some real lesbians, and they clearly feel like I am an asshole. One woman told me I need help. So, believe it or not, I stopped. I do not like being an asshole. But I can’t help but wonder: Was this really that bad? It’s the internet, for goodness sake, and for all I know I am chatting with other straight dudes who are pretending to be lesbians. Isn’t some lying to be expected? And if I’m not trying to pursue these women in real life, where’s the harm?
—Don’t You Know Everything, Savage?

Loathe as I am to contradict the Lesbians of Reddit—which sounds like the title of a ’50s lesbian pulp-fiction novel—I don’t think you’re an asshole, DYKES.

If you created fake personal ads, if you actively misled lesbians who contacted you, if you sent women pics that weren’t yours in an effort to trick them into believing that you were an actual lesbian, if you strung lesbians along via e-mail for weeks or months—if you were doing any of that shit—then you would be an asshole. But spinning out a few masturbatory fantasies on a site designed to facilitate one-on-one conversations between people who are never going to meet? That’s not asshole behavior. You found a way to enjoy your wannabe-lesbian fantasies without doing harm to any actual flesh-and-vulva lesbians.

And yes, DYKES, most of the “lesbians” you chatted with on Omegle were other straight dudes.

Is drag done by cisgender straight men for “humor” problematic? I thought drag was mostly about humor. I am acquainted with a bi trans woman who thinks this is offensive, and at risk of further offending her, I haven’t asked why. Maybe you know? Haven’t we come a long way if straight men are comfortable enough with their sexualities to dress as women?
—Not Feeling Offended

“Freedom means freedom for everyone,” as a huge asshole once said. That means straight guys who want to do drag are free to do drag, NFO, and bi trans women who want to take offense are free to take offense.
For the record: Good/funny/subversive drag is a burlesque on what it means to be male, not a denigration of what it means to be female. And while gay men seem to have an innate affinity for drag, there are straight guys out there who do it and do it right. Instead of arguing with a bi trans friend who wants to police the freedom and gender expression of others, get your hands on the DVDs of An Audience with Dame Edna, and invite your bi trans friend over to watch.

This week on the Savage Lovecast, Dan speaks with Daniel Bergner about foot fetish shame at savagelovecast.com.

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