Tuesday, September 9, 2008

mocking virginity?

I'm sure you've all heard about the controversy surrounding the MTV VMA's on Sunday night. If you haven't, here's a summary: British comic Russell Brand mocked the Jonas Brothers' donning of "purity" or "promise" rings, calling it a waste (to paraphrase) since the members of the very hot boy band could sleep with any woman they wanted to. Shortly after, Jordin Sparks defended wearing purity rings, since, "not every guy or girl wants to be a slut."

Okay, here's the thing, for me, at least. I'm not a fan of purity rings, in most circumstances. An article I read a few months ago described the process now adopted by a number of conservative churches, where girls, in a special ceremony, stand up before their fathers and their church and make a vow not to have sex before they're married. My problem is that a fair number of these girls were eleven or twelve. Girls of that age (at least in my experience, having been one, and knowing several) are pretty darn fickle. Exacting a solemn vow which, depending on circumstances, they could be expected to uphold for the next fifteen years, seems a little unrealistic to me.

I'm going to go out on a limb here, one that might get me into a little bit of trouble. I am not against teen sex. I am against IRRESPONSIBLE teen sex. And, of the following, who is more likely to have unprotected sex; the well-educated teenager, who makes a mature decision to have sex with her boyfriend and plans accordingly, or the teen who has sworn before her family and God that she won't have sex before marriage, pays no attention in Sex Ed because she doesn't think she needs to, and then succumbs in the heat of the moment to her boyfriend in the backseat of a car? I think it's pretty clear.

However, the choice to have or not have sex is a personal one. Granted, I may not agree with flaunting your virginity or lack thereof by the wearing of a ring, and I have an inkling that purity rings, for the Jonas Brothers, are an image-reinforcing prop to ensure Disney re-ups their contract, but I don't know them, so I don't know for sure.

What I do know is this; no one, virgin or slut, deserves to be harassed for their choice. Especially not on national TV. Not to mention that Russell Brand, by mocking them, sent a message to every teen and pre-teen watching...virgins aren't cool. Not true. AIDS isn't cool. Teenaged welfare moms aren't cool. This whole perception of virginity as a sort of loser's brand...hey, just because someone's a virgin doesn't mean they haven't had offers. It just means that, for their own personal reasons, they chose to say thanks, but no thanks.

I'd really like to hear your thoughts on this topic, so please feel free to post a response to my blog, or message me, if you're shy.

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