The section on deviant desires, to take one example, is denounced by advocates for alternative sexuality as stigmatizing those whose lusts, no matter how unusual, are harmless, or those whose erotic play, no matter how unsettling, is consensual. Should a man with a foot fetish be branded as mentally ill? Should a woman who finds ecstasy in being elaborately bound and enduring denigration or pain? Should such people be labeled with psychiatric diseases, though the rest of their lives have no serious dysfunction? Until 1973, homosexuality was among the D.S.M.’s disorders, and critics of the present chapter point to the condemnation the volume once inflicted on gay men and lesbians — condemnation that both reflected and bolstered the prevailing cultural perspective — by way of arguing that the current manual, the D.S.M.-IV, is full of unfounded and damaging sexual judgments. Many on the panel, which probably won’t, in the end, do much in the way of deleting conditions, maintain that the chapter on sexuality and gender identity doesn’t brand people too readily with disease. They note that, aside from exceptions like patients with pedophilia, only those who are distressed meet the threshold for diagnosis. In turn, the critics respond that such distress stems not from within the individual but from the infliction of societal standards, from the culture’s disapproval and aversion and therefore, in part, from the D.S.M. itself. This, they emphasize, was why the A.P.A. finally removed a last remnant of the homosexuality diagnosis — what was known as “ego-dystonic” homosexuality — in 1987.
For me, having found BDSM it's not just about sex. I find very fulfilling that I can educate people, because it's something I needed. So many people have come to tell me that I made them feel 'not guilty'
At Duke University, a school that likes to tout its cutting-edge research, a sex toy study being conducted by a behavioral economist and student health workers has roused criticism. For much of October, researchers recruited female Duke students to take part in a "sexually explicit" study on Tupperware-style parties in which sex toys, not kitchenware, are the draw.
For some, even serial monogamy seems too restrictive. The 1970s introduced the concept of "open marriage" in which couples stayed married but were free to date other people.More recently, polyamory -- the practice of having romantic relationships with multiple people at the same time with the full knowledge and consent of all involved -- has been getting a lot of attention.
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The following Media Update concerns the leather community's own Jack Rinella, who is running as a Democratic for a seat as a Delegate in the Illinois statehouse. He is running under his real name, Joe Laiacona, however he has been out about his writings as Jack Rinella. He has published LeatherViews for Gay Chicago magazine for the past 17 years and has written numerous BDSM books including the Master's Manual. His websites are: www.friendsforjoelaiacona.org and www.leatherviews.com
Joe Laiacona takes on Deb Mell
Windy City Times
Joe Laiacona is taking on incumbent state Rep. Deb Mell in what is shaping up to a very intriguing race in the state's 40th District. Does Laiacona realize the magnitude of the task before him? Absolutely. Is he intimidated? Hardly.
In a talk with Windy City Times, the openly gay Laiacona—who teaches at Columbia College and is an amateur genealogist—discussed his platform, Mell's interview with this publication and his reason for not being more "out" on his campaign Web site. ...
When I wrote last week that sexual orientation is unlikely to be an issue in the upcoming Democratic primary race on the Northwest Side between incumbent Rep. Deb Mell and challenger Joe Laiacona (they're both gay, a first at this level of politics in Illinois) I did so having not pursued a tiny clue buried in the Windy City Times interview with Laiacona: that he formerly wrote a column under the pen name "Jack Rinella" for Gay Chicago Magazine.
Capitol Fax publisher Rich Miller called my attention to a brief article from the Windy City TImes in June noting: "Laiacona—who wrote the column "Leather Views" for Gay Chicago magazine for many years under the name Jack Rinella...is also on the board of directors of the Leather Leadership Conference, Inc."
Another big piece of bad news is hitting Chicago's Mell/Blagojevich political clan.
Northwest Side State Rep. Deb Mell may have screwed up her nominating petitions, with a real risk that she'll be knocked off the February Democratic primary ballot.
A challenge filed Monday afternoon by an attorney for Joseph Laiacona, the only other remaining candidate in the 40th District race, contends that Ms. Mell is not registered to vote at her apparently new address. By law, all candidates are supposed to be registered at the address they use for their nominating petitions.
NCSF strongly condemns criminals who commit violence and engage in non-consensual activities. We encourage the media to remember that the large community of consenting adults who engage in BDSM activities should not be confused with Sowell's alleged crimes. We extend our deepest sympathies to the families and those in the neighborhood where Sowell lived.