Kinsey Kritics

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The Fox Searchlignt biopic of sex researcher Alfred Kinsey opens this week. My colleague Julian Sanchez thinks Kinsey, Let's Talk About Sex is " pretty good." Others disagree.

"Kinsey's legacy is not one of sexual enlightenment, as this movie would lead you to believe, rather Alfred Kinsey is responsible in part for my generation being forced to deal face-to-face with the devastating consequences of deadly sexually transmitted diseases, pornography, and abortion," declares Christian youth activist Brandi Swindell.

It could still be a good movie, right?

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  1. “Kinsey’s legacy is not one of sexual enlightenment, as this movie would lead you to believe, rather Alfred Kinsey is responsible in part for my generation being forced to deal face-to-face with the devastating consequences of deadly sexually transmitted diseases, pornography, and abortion.”

    Someone should call the delightfuly named Swindell and tell her to stay out of the Adult section and use a condom.

    …for Christ’s sake!

  2. “… the devastating consequences of deadly sexually transmitted diseases, pornography, and abortion”

    HAHAHAHA he he he *giggle* *snort* Ah ha ha

    good one

  3. Just to be a dick, I’m going to assume that this Brandi girl just probably hasn’t caught enough of them to be a happy lady.

    I don’t know anything about this Kinsey character – maybe he was just a sick pervert, but all these people who think abstinence is some sort of healthy thing for most people are nuts.

  4. MEMORANDUM FOR 843rd Bomb Wing

    SUBJECT: Benefits of Abstinence

    1. Abstinence is the most efficient way of maintaining the purity of your essence.

    2. POC is the undersigned.

    //original signed//
    Jack D. Ripper
    BG, USAF
    Commanding

  5. I read Kinsey’s book but it was a really long time ago. I wasn’t impressed with it much. Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche was much funnier as was Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex But Were Afraid To Ask.

    I’m not sure one can blame Kinsey for the so-called sexual revolution of the 1960’s and beyond, particularly since unmarried people actually had sex prior to the discovery by the baby boomers that sex was fun. People just a bit more reluctant to broadcast their proclivities to the world.

    Not only that but in the old days people cheated on their spouses with boring regularity. Even the world’s most famous optimist, Dale Carnegie, complained in the 1920’s and 1930’s that around 35% of all marriages were “shattered on the rocks of Reno.”

    For the two cents waiting for change that my opinion is worth I think Kinsey is yawnable even though Julian assures us that the show might be pretty good. Besides, it was my understanding that his work turned out to be about as credible as Margaret Mead’s anthropology.

    Brandi is just a confused lass who isn’t happy about the way lots of things have gone. To her I say “It’s a long line, Babe”.

  6. Drat, I pushed the ‘post’ button by mistake so I hereby disavow any errors in the foregoing post.

  7. Found an interesting website: http://www.cwfa.org/kinsey.asp

    Enjoy.

  8. Too bad she was forced to deal face-to-face with a major aspect of human life. Otherwise she might have been able to do what God intended and exist in a state of self-imposed ignorance about serious and consequential issues.

    Pity.

  9. Ken, good eye with respect to Brandi’s name but I can one-up you on that. The preacher man who founded the Fullerton (Ca) Evangelical Free Church was:

    Chuck SWINDOLL (rimshot)

    Yes, Chuck Swindle, as he was known by many of us yougsters in the OC of yester year.

    I don’t think his dynasty controls that local church anymore, which has been huge since at least the 1970’s. It rivals Calvary Chapel though pales somewhat in comparison to Rev Schuller’s Monument to Himself in Orange.

    He’s also made a name for himself over at Insight For Living, which I think is his own private gig.

    More than you wanted to know regards, TWC

  10. I have the misfortune of sharing the same hometown (Boise, Idaho) as Brandi Swindell. What a humorless, self-satisfied scold. The local joke here is that the most dangerous place to stand in Boise is between Brandi and a TV camera. Happy to see she’s out to protect us from anything but lights-out-under-the-covers-procreation-only-and-whatever-you-do-don’t-enjoy-it sex.

  11. OK, it’s fun to mock a “Christian youth activist” with a funny name, and she does go a bit overboard. However, some recent research seems to show that Kinsey’s personal beliefs distorted his science. (Margaret Mead suffered a similar posthumous reputation deflation.)

    Trivia: one of his subjects was Herbert Huncke, a junky/hustler/petty criminal who was an inspiration to many of the early Beat writers. Having read some Huncke, I’d certainly not want to draw general conclusions about human sexuality from that guy’s experiences….

  12. Everything I know about Dr. Kinsey I learned from the Lord Lebby song, “Dr. Kinsey Report”

  13. “she looks pretty hot…”

    If I recall the mythology correctly, Medusa was pretty hot too before she pissed off some god who then went and put those snakes on her head.

    But she does look kinda cute in a well-scrubbed way. No doubt she gets a few more seconds per encounter to impart her message to bemused males than she would if she looked like Phyllis Schafly.

  14. Well, Kinsey’s sample groups were made up a bit too heavily of sailors, convicts, etc., and so his results were probably quite a bit off.

    Too bad he didn’t just interview Evangelicals. He would have discovered that everyone in America is on at least their second marriage yet still disparages divorce as a product of secular humanism. Also, that everyone in America is an idiot.

  15. The comments have pretty much covered this, but I think the historical and genetic record more or less indicates that promiscuity, STDs, abortion, and probably pornography have been the norm for humans. Not to say that what “is” tells us what “ought” to be, but it does tell us what can be achieved. The record seems to indicate that eliminating these vices would require a terrible infringement on liberty.

  16. OK, it’s fun to mock a “Christian youth activist” with a funny name, and she does go a bit overboard. However, some recent research seems to show that Kinsey’s personal beliefs distorted his science.

    It’s not her statements about Kinsey that inspire laughter, so much as it is her use of phrases like “the devastating consequences of pornography”.

    I think the historical and genetic record more or less indicates that promiscuity, STDs, abortion, and probably pornography have been the norm for humans.

    Sure. There’s cave art of people having sex that dates back to prehistoric times. Anthropologists generally claim that the art had religious or cultural significance. I take this as evidence that anthropologists don’t get out much.

  17. I’ll bet under that cold exterior she’s just dying for some scumbag to bend her over and do her rough on the hood of his rusty El Camino.

  18. I like your style, mike.

  19. Any bets on whether the Christian youth activist has enjoyed some pre-marital sex of the kinky kind? They say that the most repressed ones are always the kinkiest and most hypocritical.

  20. Dan,

    The line about pornography is just Republican agitprop; Justice Department people say that all the time (indeed, just the other day I heard one say something like “the scattered and numerous victims of pornography that have been strewn coast to coast in this country”).

    It probably did have religious significance, since fertility rituals were full to the brim with, well, ferility rituals (i.e., fucking).

    Someone should morph her head onto a porn picture and then send it to her.

    From the article concerning her:

    Can the church bring healing to the nation’s conflict over abortion? One woman says yes.

    *puke*

  21. A lot of sickos posting here. The disdain you all share for Christianity is obvious.

    First, the effects of STDs and abortion are well documented and devastating is not an inaccurate description of those effects. Porn is a disgusting industry and the guys and girls falling into that mess often never recover.

    Being opposed to moral coercion does not mean one must be opposed to individuals’ using moral persuasion to change other individuals choices. Perhaps if libertarians were more tolerant moral persuasion, more would agree with us on the wrongness of coercion.

  22. FWIW, while I don’t think anyone’s going to deny there were various problems with Kinsey’s study, a lot of the “well, everybody knows that…” critiques are overblown. It’s true, for example, that he gathered large numbers of histories from institutionalized populations, but he weighted his samples in an attempt to compensate for that. When colleagues re-ran his data years later, totally excluding those populations, the effect on the results was actually quite slight.

  23. Reg,

    A lot of sickos posting here. The disdain you all share for Christianity is obvious.

    Oh no!!! Disdain for Christianity!!! Oh no!!! How horrifying! Get over yourself.

    First, the effects of STDs and abortion are well documented and devastating is not an inaccurate description of those effects.

    Perhaps that is true, neverthless, it is still rather dimwitted to lay trends concerning either exclusively at Dr. Kinsey’s door (especially in light of the fact neither STDs nor abortions were exactly issues which started with Kinsey). Indeed, much of the criticism of this nitwit’s statements has concerned that very effort. Thus your argument is beside the point.

    Porn is a disgusting industry and the guys and girls falling into that mess often never recover.

    I like porn. The adults who get involved in the industry know what they are doing. You assume that your opinion is the correct one, and that we should all follow your lead. I mean, you’re entitled to your opinion and all, but don’t expect everyone to agree with you.

    Being opposed to moral coercion does not mean one must be opposed to individuals’ using moral persuasion to change other individuals choices.

    Well, I am not opposed to abortions or pornography, so I don’t see how this argument makes much sense from my perspective (I find nothing immoral in either subject in other words). As to the issue of STDs, folks who get STDs should take responsibility for their actions, but I don’t see it as my role to browbeat them over the matter.

    Perhaps if libertarians were more tolerant moral persuasion, more would agree with us on the wrongness of coercion.

    (a) I seriously doubt that, and (b) what requires moral persuasion for you, may not be the same for me.

  24. Reg,

    I’m waiting for you start preaching about the “homosexual lifestyle” next.

  25. Well, Julian. How would you explain why his findings have not been duplicated before or since?

  26. Doesn’t Brandi know that HIV came from Africa, where they barely read much less know about Kinsey? Or was world history not taught in her home schooling program in creation science??

  27. “I am not opposed to abortions or pornography, so I don’t see how this argument makes much sense from my perspective (I find nothing immoral in either subject”

    Right, Jason, because abortions are never immoral. Of course it’s all right to kill a kid in its 3rd trimester or just because it’s an “inconvenience”.

    One can want abortions to stay legal without saying “There’s absolutely nothing wrong with killing babies!”

  28. I am just pissed that they type cast John Lithgow as a man of rigid piety. God, I am so mad I am going to go to an abandoned warehouse and dance it out of me.

  29. Reg,

    Actually, I’m a Christian.

    While it’s true that STDs and unwanted pregnancies can be devastating, both can be easily avoided with a condom .

    You’re right about the pornography industry, it’s disgusting. Neither you nor Brandi should patronize it.

    P.S. I’m all about moral persuasion.

  30. steve talbert,

    Good one. 🙂

    andy,

    And one can merely state one does not think abortions to be immoral. And of course your statements are beside the point, since again, Reg strangely assumes that everyone agrees with him, and from such he argues that libertarians are lame for not supporting his busy-body crusade.

  31. And let’s be blunt about this, Brandi likely thinks that the only “englightened” sex is between a man and a woman who are married and who worship her God. Now, she’s free to think what she wants to think, bur for me that ain’t “enlightened” sex; unless of course I get to use a candle and some toys.

  32. STDs and unwanted pregnancies were issues long before Kinsey ever published anything. There are some among the flock who think America was a monolithic Christian paradise prior to the ’60s. However, I’ve heard it persuasively argued that the sexual revolution was really a communication revolution more than anything else; every day people started talking openly about sex, which they didn’t do before.

    Brandi may be startled to hear that, once upon a time, every other ‘burg and ‘ville had a brothel, many of which operated openly. Also, she may not have considered that, prior to the discovery of penicillin, some of the STDs we all but dismiss today were quite deadly and prolific. Unwanted pregnancies have always been an issue. I’ve seen pornographic photographs from the early 20th Century. In what way is Kinsey supposed to be responsible for all this?

    P.S. I understand that there may have been gay people prior to the ’60s too.

  33. “of course I get to use a candle and some toys.”
    LOL
    nice. and drive her home in the el camino. there’s some nice style there, too JB!

    and reg: this atheist libertarian only has disdain for individuals who think that their (“christian”) morals are the only morals for everybody. ptttttffffffff.

    thoreau, was that you? 🙂

    drf

  34. From the title, I damn well expect a funky rendition by Salt n’ Pepa.

  35. Generally, ad hominem attacks reveal more about the attacker than about the target.

    The appropriate response to Ms. Swindell is not the common knee jerk reaction of Jesus sucks, porn rocks, and “what she really needs….” One should carefully examine and consider her hypothesis. Did Kinsey’s work have any provable and measurable effect on sexual behavior, STDs, abortion or pornography?

    I am not a sex researcher so I am not qualified to evaluate Kinsey’s research. As a student of history, I know that the sexually-related behavior Swindell decries have existed throughout human history to varying degrees. Perhaps in some small way, Kinsey’s work allowed Americans to feel more comfortable talking about sex. On the other hand, I find it difficult believe Kinsey induced more sex or sexually-related problems like STDs.

    One final note, the majority of Christians in America have no desire for a theocracy. While many feel the Judeo-Christian moral values are superior to say, amorality, most go quietly about the business of living without smacking anyone on the head with a Bible. In my experience, Christians are far less likely to intrude on the quiet pleasure my daily life than the religious adherents of say, environmentalism.

  36. Just nit picking:

    While many feel the Judeo-Christian moral values are superior to say, amorality

    I’m sure they feel that *Christian* moral values are superior to all others. Maybe Jewish values come in second. Also, I don’t think I’ve ever met an amoralist, even among atheists.

  37. I have met my share of amoral people, but perhaps I get out more.

    Christianity and Judaism share the same origin. Not surprisingly, the moral values of both religions are quite similar. Both faiths believe in divine inspiration of their moral codes, i.e., the ten commandments. If one believes in an omniscient supreme being, then it stands to reason that a moral code coming from such a being would be superior.

    Swindell is exercising her right to free speech, as are the respondents on this forum. To break from the weighty discourse on Ms. Swindell and El Caminos, I must express my delight in a society where the religious and nonreligious are unfettered in their ability to spout nonsense.

  38. On the existence of amoral people, I think everyone acts without regard to moral distinctions at some point, but at the same time, it seems almost everyone recognizes moral distinctions of some sort and speaks in terms of them at some point as well. So at the risk of holding down the mushy middle, I’d hesitate to claim there’s much of anyone who squarely falls into that camp, although almost anyone could appear to in a given instance. Jose, I’m curious, can you describe these amoral folks you’ve met and what made them thus?

  39. Reg said
    A lot of sickos posting here. The disdain you all share for Christianity is obvious.

    And rightly so. I laugh at UFO wackos too. Extrordinary claims demand extrordinary proof. Too often I see people using religion as evidence that they have the right to push some personal belief onto errr, I mean, morally persuade someone.

    Jose Ortega y Gasset said:
    In my experience, Christians are far less likely to intrude on the quiet pleasure my daily life than the religious adherents of say, environmentalism.

    Maybe that’s because in theory, I don’t have to share the same religion with you. I do have to share the same air. In practice, there seems to be a lot of people who think I need to share a religion with them too.

    As for my El Camino post, it wasn’t entirely tongue in cheek. I’m not exactly stud city, but I have ‘known’ a few women and in my experience the tight asses like Miss Brandi are the ones most likely to want some bad boy to ‘take her’ so she doesn’t have to assume any responsibility for her own lust and desire. I hate being that guy and prefer my trists to be a little more equitable, but sometimes you gotta go with what gets ’em going.

  40. “Judeo-Christian” is code for trying to sound inclusive, when in fact Judaism and Christianity are quite different theological beasts. Essentially its tossed around by Christians who know very little about Judaism but also want to sound “diverse” or have some eschatological axe to grind.

    Christianity and Judaism share the same origin. Not surprisingly, the moral values of both religions are quite similar. Both faiths believe in divine inspiration of their moral codes, i.e., the ten commandments.

    Similar belief in divine inspiration is not the same as stating that the moral values of both are the same or “quite similar.” Indeed, given given your line of reasoning one could argue that Islam and Christianity or Zoarastrianism and Christianity are “quite similar,” but I would say that they are not.

    …spout nonsense.

    Include yourself in that description.

  41. Jose,

    In my experience, Christians are far less likely to intrude on the quiet pleasure my daily life than the religious adherents of say, environmentalism.

    You obviously aren’t gay. My experience with Christians is that they are quite willing to intrude into the quiet pleasure of my daily and tell me that I am going to hell, and right quick.

  42. “Christianity and Judaism share the same origin. Not surprisingly, the moral values of both religions are quite similar. Both faiths believe in divine inspiration of their moral codes, i.e., the ten commandments. If one believes in an omniscient supreme being, then it stands to reason that a moral code coming from such a being would be superior.”

    Christ was rather clear that people who reject him will be quite sorry. The sad and ignored fact about Jesus was that he could be a real asshole sometimes. The God of the Old Testament is a mass murderer, plain and simple.

    The Ten Commandments (which are ignored regularly by most folks who claim that they’re so important they should be posted in our schools and other public places) are simply horrible, totalitarian rules for a society. And, according to the “superior” morals of the Ten Commandments, the punishment for working on the Sabbath (Friday for the Muslims? Saturday for the Jews? Or Sunday for the Christians?), the punishment for worshipping Shiva or Gaia, the punishment for coveting, for adultry is the same. Death.

    I’ve nothing against people having a faith in a God that guides their lives, but this is not a superior moral code. It’s Bronze Age superstition meant to scare people into behaving.

  43. Fyodor, we generally agree. I have worked with predatory sexual offenders and sociopaths. Few thought of themselves as amoral. Ah, the human ability to rationalize is stunning. Is amorality a constant state? I don’t think so. Consider the serial pedophile who is generally a very nice person. Amoral or not?

    And, Mike, yes, we share the same air. The decisions relating to air should be based on science, not faith. Modern environmentalism is a religion. If you are going to restrict my freedom, I ask that any such restriction meet the standard of science. I can demonstrate numerous examples of issues (like global warming) where the science is uncertain but the policy initiatives are not.

    And finally Mr. Bourne. We are not talking about theology; we are talking about moral values. Thou shalt not murder. Thou shalt not steal. Thou shall honor thy father and mother. I think these rather generic values are relatively common to most major religions, one might argue that they are useful from an anthropological perspective.

    As for hell, Mr. Bourne, I do not think your sexual preferences will matter. If you burn in the pit of eternal damnation, I suspect the cause would be your rather snippy posts on Hit and Run. In the words of my favorite theologian, Willy Wonka, good day to you, sir.

  44. Jose Ortega y Gasset,

    I suggest Trude Rosmarin’s book on the subject of Christianity and Judaism’s differences (I think that it is titled simply Judaism and Christianity).

    Anyway, better to rule in hell than be servant in heaven. 🙂

  45. If you burn in the pit of eternal damnation, I suspect the cause would be your rather snippy posts on Hit and Run.

    Guess *I’m* fucked, then.

    I just hope they put me in with the naughty Catholic schoolgirls.

  46. “I just hope they put me in with the naughty Catholic schoolgirls.”

    Well, they’ll be naughty, and they’ll be Catholic, but….


  47. However, I’ve heard it persuasively argued that the sexual revolution was really a communication revolution more than anything else; every day people started talking openly about sex, which they didn’t do before.

    I’ve just been reading Laud Humphreys’ The Tearoom Trade, which is a sociological study about gay sex in public bathrooms in the 1960s (no joke), and it’s been a bit of a window back in time. Judging by what Humphreys says, you could buy guides to gay bars in various cities back in 1965, and it doesn’t sounds like America has ever been in the dark about the existence of gay people and what they do. I mean, you don’t send undercover policemen to hang out in men’s bathrooms if you don’t have a pretty good idea what you’re looking for already.

  48. “I just hope they put me in with the naughty Catholic schoolgirls.”

    The joke’s on you. You’re headed for a closet filled with clean, well-pressed, never worn catholic girl skirts. Have fun.

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