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Kinky is NOT a Diagnosis - 2010-02-02

on Tuesday, 02 February 2010. Hits 283

Kinky is NOT a Diagnosis

NCSF is proud to announce that 3,241 people signed the DSM Revision Petition from June 2008 to December 2009. The petition is now closed and has been sent to the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and the members of the Sexual and Gender Identity Disorders Work Group for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM V). Thank you to everyone who participated in this historic effort!

The diagnoses in the DSM-TR-IV subject people who practice BDSM, fetishes and cross-dressing to bias, discrimination and social sanctions without any scientific basis. NCSF often sees individuals who suffer distress and impairment in their social and occupational lives (ie. interpersonal difficulties) because their desires conflict with current societal standards. These standards stem in a large part from the DSM. itself: pathologizing unusual sexual interests has led to more discrimination and discouraged individuals from seeking treatment for physical and mental health problems. This codification of "cultural aversion" was the same reason that ego-dystonic homosexuality was included in the DSM, and then removed when it was finally recognized as such by the APA.

Some of the comments made on the petition include:

#604: "BDSM is no more an illness or dysfunction than boxing, skydiving or participating in any extreme sport."

#1680: "I am all for removing these biases from legitimate psychiatry. It has ruined a friend of mine as for 8 years he has felt ashamed, depressed and self destructive because some "therapist" diagnosed him as sexually deviant and egodystonic and told him to repress his urges."

#1902: "Psychiatry should serve human wellness, not police human diversity."

#2224: "Historically, diagnoses of insanity have been used to marginalize those with unusual sexual preferences. This has to stop."

#2566: "I just had an acquaintance lose custody of her child to her now-vengeful ex due to "kink" and a bad judge. It's time to take more bias out of the DSM."

"The politicization of sexuality is common in this country," says Leigha Fleming, Board Chair of NCSF. "There is no basis in scientific fact for the categorization of BDSM and affiliated behaviors as inherently pathological or unhealthy. Social conservatives shouldn't be allowed to carry their agenda into the DSM. It wasn't appropriate when homosexuality was classified as a disorder by the APA and it's not correct now for the DSM to classify consensual adult sexual expression like BDSM, cross dressing, etc. as disorder. The DSM was never meant to be a political weapon used to marginalize sexual minorities. The overwhelming response by our constituents necessitates our involvement in this critical issue."

To see the hundreds of comments that petitioners made on the petition, click here: www.thepetitionsite.com/1/DSMrevisionpetition

To find out more about the DSM and the Paraphilias section, read the NCSF & ITCR: The Foundation for NCSF's "White Paper on the DSM Revision" at www.ncsfreedom.org

For more information, email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

NCSF Applauds Federal Lawsut Filed against Atlanta Police

on Friday, 27 November 2009. Hits 1523

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
National Coalition for Sexual Freedom

NCSF APPLAUDS FEDERAL LAWSUIT FILED AGAINST ATLANTA POLICE

November 25, 2009 - Federal lawsuit filed yesterday! Check out http://atlantaeagleraid.com

NCSF is actively involved in supporting the Atlanta Eagle and the plaintiffs in this suit. In the case filed by Lambda Legal, Southern Center for Human Rights, and Dan Grossman as representation for the plaintiffs, a federal law suit alleging multiple civil rights violations was filed November 24, 2009.

In speaking with Leigha Fleming NCSF Board Chair, Wednesday afternoon, attorney Dan Grossman said, "NCSF's publicity and support is very welcome and needed in this effort."

Said Ms. Fleming, "We need everyone in the Alanta community getting involved in this. There's a mayoral election coming up. Ask your candidates their opinions of the police action at the Eagle and whether or not they support the kind of bigotry and discrimination exhibited. Blog about it. Talk about it. All the various Eagle's around the country should link to this. Support this lawsuit and support NCSF."

Said Grossman, "The police believed that they could violate the rights of these men precisely because they were in a gay _leather_ bar."

NCSF is committed to creating a political, legal and social environment in the US that advances equal rights for consenting adults who engage in alternative sexual and relationship expressions. The NCSF aims to advance the rights of, and advocate for consenting adults in the BDSM-Leather-Fetish, Swing, and Polyamory Communities. We pursue our vision through direct services, education, advocacy, and outreach, in conjunction with our partners, to directly benefit these communities. Donate to NCSF now at www.ncsfreedom.org

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NCSF 822 Guilford Ave #127
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Special Media Update - 2009-11-11

on Wednesday, 11 November 2009. Hits 1019

To get the bi-monthly NCSF Media Update Digest emailed directly to you, write to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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. ...

To read the rest of this article, go to: http://www.windycitymediagroup.com/gay/lesbian/news/ARTICLE.php?AID=23220

Change of Subject: On second thought....

Chicago Tribune

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." 

To read the rest of this article, go to: http://blogs.chicagotribune.com/news_columnists_ezorn/2009/10/on-second-thought.html

Rep. Deb Mell may be off re-election ballot

Chicago Tribune

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. 

To read the rest of this article, go to: http://blogs.chicagotribune.com/news_columnists_ezorn/

NCSF Statement

on Friday, 06 November 2009. Hits 434

Anthony Sowell has been arrested in Cleveland, Ohio, and is alleged to have murdered more than 11 women. The media is reporting that Sowell was registered on dating website, Alt.com, for those interested in alternative lifestyles. People who engage in BDSM and other alternative activities do so as consenting adults and in a safe, sane, and consensual manner. That Sowell might have used the BDSM community to prey on vulnerable and unsuspecting victims is abhorrent.

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.

Kinky is NOT a Diagnosis

on Thursday, 15 October 2009. Hits 290

Help make history by signing the DSM Revision Petition now! The diagnoses in the DSM-IV-TR still subject people who practice BDSM, fetishes and cross-dressing to bias, discrimination and social sanctions without any scientific basis.

We need 3,000 signatures, but we only have 2,200 now. If you don't speak up and call on the American Psychiatric Association to adhere to empirical research when revising the diagnoses in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM V), then the Sexual and Gender Identity Disorders Work Group won't make a meaningful change.

To sign, go to: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/DSMrevisionpetition

You can make your signature anonymous on this secure petition site so it doesn't appear on the Internet or when the petition is delivered to the APA.

Petition:

            "We, the undersigned, support the American Psychiatric Association's (APA) own goal of making its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM) a scientific document, based on empirical research and devoid of cultural bias. A diagnosis of a mental disorder can have a severe adverse impact on employment opportunities, child custody determinations, an individual's well-being, and other areas of functioning. Therefore we urge the APA to remove all diagnoses that are not based upon peer-reviewed, empirical research, demonstrating distress or dysfunction, from the DSM. The APA specifically should not promote current social norms or values as a basis for clinical judgments."

To find out more about the DSM and the Paraphilias section, read the NCSF & ITCR: The Foundation for NCSF's "White Paper on the DSM Revision" at www.ncsfreedom.org

For more information, email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Help spread the word - please distribute this call for signatures!

NCSF at National Equality March

on Thursday, 15 October 2009. Hits 454

Here's Boymeat, Lolita Wolf and Kathryn proudly representing NCSF at the National Equality March on October 11th in Washington D.C.

NCSF at NEM

National Equality March

on Thursday, 08 October 2009. Hits 1062

The National Equality March hopes to see a shift in strategy to one that will secure full equality in all 50 states for LGBT Americans. Events will take place starting October 9th through the 12th. The National Equality March takes place on October 11th in Washington D.C., with staging starting at 10am. See you there!

Susan Wright on the Battle Ahead

on Thursday, 08 October 2009. Hits 325

Susan 15
"Susan Wright, founder of the NCSF"

Klawdya: What affect do you think Marriage Equality will have on issues that face NCSF’s constituents?

Susan: As more states embrace the right for all adults to marry the partner of their choice, the gay rights movement is accomplishing the goal of eliminating discrimination based on sexual orientation. The next milestone is the right to openly be in the military. This is important for the sexual freedom movement-- we have always taken cues from the gay rights movement, we learn from their strategies and rely on their help when attacked- their progress ensures our own.

Sadly, traditional gay rights groups don't defend sexual freedom. Many decided to leave the issue of sex behind as they fought for equal rights. So we have our own un-trodden path to walk. If you have sex differently than the mainstream you are at risk – whether hetero, gay, bi or other. We are the next battlefield, we are already fighting the fight, whether we like it or not, NCSF will be largely on our own because no other organization is dedicated to protecting BDSM, swing and poly practitioners.

KR: Who do you think opposes us the most? Religious or Political groups?

SW: The sexual freedom movement continues to be attacked by religious political extremists and political conservatives. Politicians on both sides of the aisle make hay when a sexual scandal arises. Things that should be private – like extra-marital affairs – are actively used to discredit individual politicians, even parties. Find a politician who will stand up for sexual freedom, and I'll work on their next campaign. As far as I know, there isn't anyone out there.

But our real enemies are the religious political extremists. These people rely on stirring the pot to raise money and gain prestige for their groups. They seek out our events, sneak in to take photos, and compare us to pedophiles and predators – when in reality it is our constituents who are the victim of their tactics. They run boycotts on businesses that support our events, inciting sensationalized media against private events. Its a fight, but NCSF is discrediting these individuals and tiny organizations run by the handful of people who claim to represent the majority of America. As long as they continue to slander, we have to be vigilant.

KR: You recently stated that some of our biggest threats may be within our community, the “Dangerous Insiders”. Can you elaborate?

SW: Yes, one of our biggest threats is the dangerous insider. Sadly, our own don't realize the damage they do to our community as a whole when they publicly attack each other and our groups. I know some may have a legitimate gripe with an individual or group, and feel their problems haven’t been dealt with as they should. But when one of our own complains to the media or the authorities, they don’t address the real issue, instead they attack our entire community. The negative publicity outweighs any good they may feel would be accomplished.

One example was a member of a BDSM group who wasn't allowed to send a message to the entire group complaining about board practices. He filed in court for a membership list. It didn't matter whether or not he had a legitimate complaint – the members freaked because they would be outed if their information were released to this person. This would have meant lost jobs, child custody, and worse. One angry self-righteous person threatened an entire group until the court settled the issue and denied the list to this dangerous insider.

Another case, in NYC, was a woman who went to the District Attorney to video tapes her former master made of their scenes after he refused to give them to her. The DA raided his apartment and found her tapes and also tapes of other scenes, some which were extreme, and the DA decided to arrest and try him for assault even though it was clearly consensual. NCSF with local gay groups and an agreeable politician coordinated a huge effort to force the DA to back down. It would have been disaster if that big public trial determined, for example, that caning to blood was illegal! Good thing we had the organizational resources or else this incident (which few have heard about) would have been front page news for months and affected all BDSM activity in NY for decades. The sub was very upset by the chaos she carelessly created, so much so that she submitted a letter to the DA asking them to NOT pursue the case further.

KR: What can the community do to strengthen and arm ourselves?

SW: We are already defending ourselves successfully. We have to assess each incident, and seek ways to stop religious extremists in their tracks. We have to do the leg work to make sure that hotels and authorities understand our sexual practices, so we can have social spaces and educate our community. We have to be vigilant, on-call every moment, as NCSF is. The NCSF is "kinky insurance" – if the community doesn't help, we may not be there when you need us.

KR: What are the landmarks of hope we can claim and expect?

SW: The success of the gay rights movement indicates we are winning. Privacy rights are more respected than the old "moral majority" which tries to dictate what people can and can't do in their own homes. Americans seem to agree that adults should be able to do what they want as long as it doesn't harm anyone and is consensual. It's a fight every step but we are winning.

Please help NCSF continue our hard work by becoming a member and donating to support our efforts.

Latest Reader Comments

  • This seems to me like it was a BSDM arrangement, which explains why she kept going to work and then went back to the apt. That said, even...

    luisa

    22. February, 2011 |

  • This is a right sentence. How could you fail to share your condition in this situation. You left all these people without any choice.

    John

    23. January, 2011 |

  • Taking pictures with one of her own graduate students wasn't the most bright move.

    Inferno

    22. September, 2010 |

  • We chose polyamory because love could not be denied.

    twowives

    27. August, 2010 |

  • [...] (That link is not remotely work-safe.) I’ve never been, but I surely will someday! And the National Coalition for Sexual...
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    Fellow Swingers

    06. July, 2010 |