I have spent the better half of my adult life trying to help people to move forward from their challenges. I don’t get paid for it. Very often, I don’t even get a simple thanks, and yet I still try my best because we need more of this in this world.
Just when we have finally allowed women out of the kitchen, and stopped roasting supposed witches upon pyres, we are now moving backward again. Silly narrow-minded people really annoy me. This article has come about, not because I support E. L. James, but because I am against the hypocrisy, and the stupid mob mentality of some people. Sometimes I am ashamed to be of the same genus as Homo Sapiens.
Grey, the novel, has just been launched and already people are riding on the coattails of its success. Mostly, they are just hopefuls making noise attempting to become as famous as E. L. James. The rabid dogs have torn into the fresh meat and self-righteously condemned it all. Some have admittedly not even read any of the books, and yet, they are suddenly experts on the subject matter. Let’s not even visit the fact that some people merely listened to the audio version without ever laying eyes on the written word. That, however, is a subject for another discussion.
Now, for the record, I don’t think the any of E. L. James’ books were spectacularly brilliant. The inner goddess was an annoying child, the story swung wildly, sometimes losing the plot, and some of it was rather repetitive. The third book was a jarring departure in style from the first two. Still, I will openly admit that I read all three. It was an interesting, and sometimes annoying love story with a little kink thrown it to titillate. After a while, even the sex scenes were lacklustre. They argued, they bonked furiously, they got married, and finally started a family. It has a ‘spankingly’ happy ending.
Very recently, several debates have heated up online. I have raised my voice to be heard on some of them. Why is that you ask? Anyone who stands by, and watches as a mob of frenzied dimwits tear into a fellow author for no legitimate reason, is as guilty as the rest. A woman, and you know who you are, acknowledged that she had not read much of any of E. L. James’ books and yet openly declared war on them, blatantly stating that it was nothing more than romanticised rape and abuse of women. Notice how biased this argument is and how she forgets the numerous cases where males are also victims of rape.
When I asked her where in the book these so called rape scenes were, she began quoting from some obscure research source, and how everything Christian did resulted in a tick for her ‘how to spot an abuser’ list. Bear in mind, she read the first chapter or two and then went on her irrational crusade. When I corrected her by informing her that what happened in the books was consensual, she called me ignorant and a few other names. I became the one doing ‘harm’, and ‘glorifying’ abuse. That’s a little irrational considering I said that what the two characters did was by mutual agreement.
Clearly, not only was she projecting her own self-diagnosed abuse, but she is also an ‘attention seeker’. I won’t bore you with the rest of the discussion, but I’ve blocked her adolescent ramblings on my end. I simply refuse to support martyrs without a cause. In fact, I wrote an entire chapter about this very subject in my first book. People think I am heartless because of what I say, but I too went through abuse, and I am not going into the details. There is nothing to be gained by it, and I don’t need a pity party. I am an adult.
The point is this: if you are ignorant, then how can you expect to be taken seriously. Many, such as myself, read the books to do research into why they have been so popular. Why did these supposedly ‘bad’ books sell so well? It is those who actually read the books that are the least vocal about the subject. It appears ignorance has the loudest voice.
My concern is that we are becoming a society of sanctimonious people who think it is okay to accuse famous people of things they haven’t said or written. It’s not okay, and I shall go to my grave as unpopular as need be, but I shall do so fighting this idiotic scourge that plagues humanity. Shall we attack the bible next? There is plenty of violence, rape, plundering, greed, adultery, pride, and even slavery … shall I go on? I would like people to be a little less bigoted and a lot more informed.
Then there is the “50 Worst Quotes” type articles. These are the most shared and often incorrect of the lot. I’ve run many of those supposed lines through a search and they are simply not in my copy of Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, or even Fifty Shades Freed. These people must have special editions that I am not privy too. It is not to say that the ‘Tampon’ part isn’t there, because it is. Some of the lines have be chopped and edited to suit the article writer’s vendetta. If you are going to quote someone, do so properly or look like a fool. The problem is that people just distribute these things blindly without question.
We are all entitled to our opinions and we can all review books — once we have read them. Until such time, you will be labelled as ignorant or a liar if you pass comment or judgment. History is filled with horrible atrocities, and still people hide behind their computers and launch cowardly attacks on public figures. Well, I say, shame on you if you do. This is what is wrong with society.
With all the conflict, rape, inequality, prejudice, and brutality in the world, Fifty Shades of Spanking is not nearly important enough to get your attention. Get off your high-horse, and get down to the base level with the down-trodden. Go help someone and stop trying to besmirch an author’s name because she is a public figure.
If you were abused, and I was, do something positive to change the world. Being judgmental and a sympathy seeker makes you a despicable human being. Misfortune and abuse do not entitle you to bring your brand of misery to the world. Be the change that the world needs, not the reminder of what is wrong.
No one is asking that you partake in any of the sexcapades of these books. People who seek the sexual avenues of BDSM allow you to live your puritanical existence, so let them explore theirs. Don’t get so tied up in your own vindication that you deny others the right to lead their own lives. Before you formulate an opinion, inform yourself. There is enough ignorant bias as it is.
Lastly, let me remind everyone that abuse can only occur when one party is not an adult or consenting. ‘No’ means just that, and if some gets turned on by being submissive to their trusted partner, then it is their right to be so. Abuse is not about sex. It is about manipulation and exploitation. Sexual intercourse is sharing a mutual sensory experience. If eager participants explore that path is none of our concern. This is the world that E. L. James has explored. You do not have to like it. You have to live and let live, or be tied up, or swing from the chandelier. You can disapprove without condemnation.
There is no greater fool than one that judges from a throne of ignorance.
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