From one talk radio host to another, thank you so much for your recent attack on Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown Law Student who testified before Congress in favor of a policy that would include birth control as part of health care coverage. You called her a slut. You meant to insult Sandra. But because you called her a slut for exercising her right to speak up and demand birth control, you have stripped the word of its traditional, cruel meaning. I am now a slut too. All women who have ever attempted to decide when and how many children they would have, and with whom, are now sluts. I’m guessing your sister, if you have one, is a slut. Your three ex-wives are probably sluts as well. Might the newest Mrs. Limbaugh be one too?
Slut is a loaded word, a word used for many years to impugn women for exercising sexual freedom. Men are not sluts. We don’t even have a word in English for men who like a lot of sex with different partners. What does that tell you about the corrosive effect of discriminatory language? We don’t have a word for men who sleep around, therefore we don’t even have a way to express the idea that such behavior might be as morally bad for men as it is judged to be for women. Of course, that is not surprising.
The thought that a woman might actually enjoy sex for its own sake is so scary to some men that they will do anything to shut us up, including wrapping a burka around us, body and soul. You even invent words to tell us how sinful our behavior is. Thank you so much today for removing one of the uglier of those words from our vocabulary. After today’s tirade, the word slut has become a badge of honor, a rallying cry for all women who demand freedom.
I envision a march on Washington, joined by my fellow women, and the many men who love and like us, in which we link arms and wear sandwich boards declaring, ” I am a slut too”. Now that you have rendered the word “slut” impotent, perhaps you can refill your Viagra prescription. But since you don’t approve of sex for fun, I know you won’t mind our insistence that Viagra be banned from health insurance. After all, if we can’t enjoy sex, neither can you.
Yours very truly,
PS- If you want to hear my voice on this, here is the link to my radio show today. and-sluts” target=”_hplink”>http://lisawexler.com/index.php/shows/2012-shows/march/apal-rush-and-sluts