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Categories: Culture
| On 2 years ago

Slut-shaming In Singapore And Our Backward Attitudes Towards Sex

“What’s wrong with being a slut?”

Screengrab: Ashamed (2010 film – Korea)

As a teenage boy growing up in Singapore, like any other teenager in the world, I was obsessed about getting laid. Life revolved around trying to balance being badass and not failing my subjects in school, Counterstrike, finding ingenious hiding places for my 10-cigarette Marlboro packs, and most importantly, dipping my fingers (and hopefully more) into the sacred nectar from the holy grail of the female – the vagina.

Buying condoms from 7-11 in my Chinese High school uniform was considered cool, and every time I actually got to use these with someone, I would boast about it to my bros. “Smell my fingers, guess what I did yesterday?”

Every sexual partner was a conquest, and during those days, she had to be a “stead / girlfriend” before we could get under the sheets together. The more conquests I achieved, the more my bros celebrated me. But if I found out that she was also f**king other people, she was a “slut”. Wow. A bit of double standards there?

Today, 15 years later, this pubescent attitude towards sexual freedom still holds strong in our society – it’s only normal for boys to be f**king around, but girls, oh girls, they have to guard their chastity like a precious jewel, if not, she’s just cheap, loose, and lacks morals – not just amongst teenagers, but a great majority of single Singaporean adults.

Why?

Oh, yes, the infamous key-and-lock analogy: If a key can open many locks, it is a master key and it is a good key. But if a lock can be opened by many keys, it’s a shitty lock.

While in the context of a lock and key, the above argument might hold true. But you see, the woman’s divine vagina is not really a lock, because chastity is nothing to guard. It’s an ancient notion that chastity is something that’s worth anything in a forward thinking society.

Before the invention of contraception, it would make perfect sense for women to not f**k around mindlessly, because babies. And if she did, she would probably end up with a bunch of babies that she might find difficult to take care of alone. Tough times. But today, when a simple condom can prevent 98% of unwanted pregnancies (wear two and it’ll be 196%, boom), surely, women should be able to enjoy their sexual freedom without being shamed.

So let’s go with the pencil sharpener argument instead. If a pencil sharpener can sharpen all sorts of pencils, it’s a good sharpener. If 2 pencil sharpeners prefer to rub their blades together and not sharpen pencils, they’re still good pencil sharpeners. If a pencil sharpener chooses not to sharpen any pencils, it is still a good sharpener.

Wait, what about our traditional values? Should we now throw our virtues out of the window?

Well, tradition simply means stuff that we’ve been doing for a long time. And times change. The good traditions such as filial piety and respect for elders are timeless and should of course, be kept. As for those that applied to a more conservative past where there was little knowledge of gender equality and even understanding of other cultures, those can be changed to make way for a more loving, more equal, more harmonious global community.

Sex should stop being a shameful act that reflects on our morals. It’s the closest form of physical connection between two, or more, human beings. And in a day and age where we have become so incredibly distant from one another, it might just open the doors to greater understanding, and greater enjoyment of life. It feels amazingly good, and it’s natural, so there’s absolutely nothing wrong with indulging in it, alone, with a single partner, multiple partners, or all at the same time, as long as everyone agrees to it.

Many religions have convinced us to see sex as a sin. If that rocks your boat, go for it. But really, calling someone else a “slut” or a “sinner” just because beautiful orgies of love is not your thing, that’s just self-centredness. Our freedom ends where another person’s freedom begins. Believe what you want, do what you want. Just because we think something is wrong in our perception, to someone else, it might be the most normal thing to do. So as long as it doesn’t affect your personal life, let those who love sex love it. And no one should feel ashamed of loving their own bodies, what their own bodies can do and feel, and sharing it with consensual parties.

In conclusion, I’m a slut. And sluts have more fun.


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Kai Teo

Self-proclaimed hippie punk living in Sweden, Kai believes that only if he could explain the different colours to a blind person can he reach writer's nirvana. He also writes for Buddha Mag, The Ozorian Prophet and Vice.

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