The Camp Vamp: Katrina Fox

Commentary on GLBTIQ issues, social justice and some of life's quirks.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Girls kissing girls is a good thing, whatever the reason

According to a survey by internet portal Lycos, most British men aren’t bothered if their female partners indulge in lesbian affairs. While 30 per cent found it “a bit odd”, 61 per cent said it is “not a problem”. It would be nice to think that the 21st century has given rise to a whole new breed of enlightened blokes, who are totally cool and comfortable with women’s sexuality and no longer see lesbianism as a threat to their masculinity. But I suspect it’s more to do with the popularity of online porn involving two or more chicks and with the current trend of straight girls kissing or snogging other straight girls, not for their own pleasure, but to please straight guys.

Young women are more inclined to indulge in these 'faux' Sapphic fumblings, with the trend happening mostly on college campuses and night-clubs. Any touching, sucking or poking of any sexual organs below the mouth, however, is strictly forbidden. “The impulse [to go further than kissing] is there, and some girls do it, but respectable girls who kiss girls don’t,” says ‘Julie’ in an article on the subject on Salon.com in 2006. Whether this trend is a good or bad thing continues to be hotly debated in the media. Some argue it’s an expression of girls’ sexuality and therefore valid and empowering. Others believe it degrades ‘real’ lesbians because of participants’ insistence that they are absolutely not gay, not even bisexual, as if gay or bi is something bad.

All I know is, I wish this trend had been in place when I was in my teens. If my cousin Alan had asked me to snog a cute girl in my class to turn him on, instead of having to suck his face off at the end of our first (and last) date, I’d have been in my element. If Alison Stewart, the gorgeous blonde Debbie Harry lookalike at high school had solicited me for a bit of lip action and dirty dancing in order to help her snare a lad she had her eye on, I would have been most happy to oblige – after all, that’s what sisterhood is all about, right?

And that’s the point the critics of girl-girl make-outs seem to be missing. All the analyses of how ‘degrading’ it might be for queer girls to see straight girls playing bi for male attention omit to point out that it’s the perfect opportunity for said queer girls to have a full-on lesbo make-out session with the straight girl crush of their dreams that they would otherwise have had no chance with and had to spend the summer mooning over their unrequited love and playing maudlin Karen Carpenter songs. Most of us have had and will continue to have to spend even just a little time in the closet in our youth – at least nowadays some of the rewards are a lot more substantial.

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