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Jason Stotts

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  1. by Jason Stotts I am thrilled to announce that “Eros and Ethos: A New Theory of Sexual Ethics” is officially published and available for sale in ebook format now (here). The paperback edition will be available in a week or so and I’ll post an update when it’s live. Once you read it, and you’re thoroughly impressed (as you will be), please leave me a review on Amazon. Feel free to also reach out to me with any questions or comments. If you find any errors, please let me know right away. My contact information is on the contact page as well as in the front of the book. Also, if you want a signed copy of the paperback or one of limited numbered and signed copies, check out the Special Editions page. Link to Original
  2. by Jason Stotts One of the things that I think people often fail to understand about markets is that literally every good is affected by every other. A change in the price of oil will change the price of wool. A regulation about coffee in Brazil will change the price of cars in America. Everything that affects a market at all will be felt in the price of every good or service in the market. Perhaps the effect will be larger or smaller, but if you do anything in a market, rest assured you are having an impact. I think this short movie does a good job of illustrating this fact in a very benevolent way and I encourage everyone to take a look at it. Capitalism is the only system of individual rights ever conceived; it is the only moral system of human interaction. Link to Original
  3. by Jason Stotts I’ve decided to end the current Goodreads giveaway early…so that I can give away MORE BOOKS! If you haven’t entered the current giveaway, tomorrow is the last day to do so. Watch out for a new giveaway starting soon! (Link) Goodreads Book Giveaway Eros and Ethos by Jason Stotts Giveaway ends December 05, 2017. See the giveaway details at Goodreads. Enter Giveaway Link to Original
  4. by Jason Stotts I am thrilled to announce that as of today, the pre-order is now live on Amazon! Pre-order for the ebook is here: http://amzn.to/2AAwtV0. The pre-order for the print book will be available soon. If you’re interested in ordering special editions, like signed copies or a limited edition numbered run, see this page: http://jasonstotts.com/eros-ethos/signed-copies-special-edition/ There will be several contests in the lead up to the book launch. The first is that there are 3 signed copies being given away on Goodreads. Enter to win here: link. There will other contests announced soon, so watch for them. You can find more information about the book at http://jasonstotts.com/eros-ethos/ or ErosandEthos.com. Link to Original
  5. by Jason Stotts There is a new giveaway on Goodreads for my forthcoming book “Eros and Ethos: A New Theory of Sexual Ethics”. There are 3 signed copies available to win, so head on over and get registered. Goodreads Book Giveaway Eros and Ethos by Jason Stotts Giveaway ends February 08, 2018. See the giveaway details at Goodreads. Enter Giveaway (In case the widget doesn’t work, the link is: https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/263146-eros-and-ethos-a-new-theory-of-sexual-ethics?utm_content=button&utm_medium=email&utm_source=giveaway_shelved_book_36514860) Link to Original
  6. by Jason Stotts I am so very pleased to finally be announcing the immanent publication of Eros and Ethos. It has been nearly 10 years in the making and I think it’s simply amazing. I hope you will as well. Pre-orders for the ebook will go live on November 11th on Amazon. At that time, I’ll update this with a link to the book. The ebook will be published on February 9th. It will be available for purchase and available via Kindle Select for the first 90 days. After that, it will also be available through other outlets. The ebook will launch in all Amazon markets concurrently (including Canada, the UK, Australia, etc.). It will only be available in English at launch, but may be available in other languages in the future. The paperback version of the book will be available soon after (details to be finalized soon). Anyone who purchases the paperback through amazon will have the option to concurrently buy a discounted version of the ebook for an additional $2.99. *People buying signed copies should be able to get discount ebooks as well (would either have to directly email them or find a way to do discount codes through Amazon) There will be 50 special signed and numbered copies available for purchase directly through Erosophia on (hopefully) launch day. These can also be pre-ordered so that you can be guaranteed one. They will be $50 each and will help support my work and will go a long way to getting Volume 2 out. These are also already 20% sold, so don’t wait too long if you want one. Regular signed paperbacks will also be available through Erosophia for $20 plus shipping. Here is the description: [Blurb] Link to Original
  7. by Jason Stotts It saddened me today to learn that Hugh Hefner died last night. I have written about Hefner before (link) and his role in both civil rights and sexual freedoms. Hefner was a great pioneer in the sexual field and really helped to change our culture for the better with respect to sexuality. For anyone who has not seen it, I recommend the Amazon series “American Playboy” that tells much of Hefner’s story. What I find most remarkable about Hefner, aside from his strong stance on civil rights and sexual freedoms, is that he wrote and defended his beliefs about sexual ethics in “The Playboy Philosophy.” (For example, you can see him debate William Buckley on sexual ethics here.) What is so great about this is that he was attempting to shift the debate around sexuality to a philosophic level and out of the emotive reactionism and moral panic of the past. Whether he succeeded or not is moot, but in so doing, he blazed the way for others to write on the topic and helped to shift the culture. There is a strong sense in which Hefner paved the way for books like mine and I will be forever in his debt for this. So, thank you Mr. Hefner. You lived your life as you saw fit and made the world a better place in the process. Link to Original
  8. by Jason Stotts I can’t believe it’s been another year and now Erosophia is 12! While it wasn’t a big year for content on Erosophia, it has been a really big year for Eros and Ethos, which is coming out THIS FALL! One of the big changes that made this possible was splitting Eros and Ethos into multiple volumes. The original project simply grew much too large and there was a natural split between the first part that establishes the theory and the second part that applies it to the various problems of sexual ethics. Volume 1: The Theory Introduction (Finished) Chapter 1: Ethics (Finished) Chapter 2: Emotions and Sentiments (Final copy edit) Chapter 3: Love (Final copy edit) Chapter 4: Relationships (Final substantive edit) Chapter 5: Sexual Attraction & Fantasy (Ver. 3/4) Chapter 6: Identity, Orientation, & Self-Understanding (Ver. 3/4) Chapter 7: Sex, Union, & Intimacy (Ver. 3/4) Most of Volume 1 is done and in copy-editing now. We’re shooting to have everything ready to be published on October 1st. Soon, we’ll have the website www.ErosandEthos.com fully operational to support the book launch. I’m so excited to have Eros and Ethos almost done and ready for publication. If you want to stay current with things, you can subscribe to Erosophia or for a more personal touch, subscribe to my new quarterly newsletter. Finally, I want to thank all of you, for a great 12 years and I look forward to many more years to come. Link to Original
  9. by Jason Stotts Editing of penultimate draft of “Eros and Ethos” is going well and it is about 1/3 edited now. I anticipate having a complete final draft sometime this summer with publication in the early Fall. To that end, I’m looking for around 3 volunteers to serve as proofreaders. You must be willing to commit to returning each chapter within 2 weeks and you must commit to doing this for all of Volume 1, which is 7 chapters. I’m anticipating about one chapter a month through Summer. If you’re interested, email me at Jason(at)JasonStotts.com and let me know why I should pick you. If you have experience editing, that would certainly be a plus. If you have background in philosophy or sex, that would also be a plus. If you just really enjoy reading, that works too. There is no special background that you have to have, because the book is written for a general audience. The people selected will be thanked in the book and receive a numbered and signed first edition. Link to Original
  10. by Jason Stotts I recently read G. E. M. Anscombe’s “Modern Moral Philosophy” for the first time and I think that it is one of the most astute and important essays on ethics that I have ever read. In it, she has three major theses, but it is the second that is the most important and makes the paper a necessary read for anyone interested in ethics. Her second thesis is this: The concepts of obligation, and duty—moral obligation and moral duty, that is to say—and of what is morally right and wrong, and of the moral sense of “ought,” ought to be jettisoned if this is psychologically possible; because they are survivals, or derivatives from survivals, from an earlier conception of ethics which no longer generally survives, and are only harmful without it. (p. 1) She wants to take on the ideas that we have a duty to do, or that morality obligates us to do, certain things for which we can be condemned as “morally wrong” if we fail in them (it is important to emphasize that these are all unchosen duties or obligations and that someone voluntarily choosing to take on a duty or obligation is an entirely different issue). She has in her sights any ethical system that utilizes the concept of “duty” or “obligation,” which is nearly all major ethical systems: in utilitarianism you have a duty to maximize happiness, in Kantianism you have a duty to your unknowable nature-in-itself, in religion you have a duty to obey your god, etc. This is no easy task, for if she’s right, then she will take out all of these ethical systems at the base and render them unsupported. So, what’s her argument? First, that many people feel that there is some special psychological force involved in moral “shoulds” that make them different from other kinds of shoulds like “you should put gas in your car.” This special “‘moral’ sense” implies “some absolute verdict (like one of guilty/not guilty on a man)” (p. 5). This arises from an equation between “shoulds” and obligations or duties, “in the sense in which one can be obliged or bound by law” (p. 5). Second, that this conjunction between “shoulds” and the law has arisen because Christianity has dominated ethics for centuries and it operates via a “law conception of ethics” (p. 5). In this conception of ethics, their god is the lawgiver and his commandments are the law. Of course, this divine law must be obeyed absolutely and is not open to question or amenable to reason. Third, that failure to do your duty and obey the divine law is not simply to do a single wrong. Rather, it makes a person “sinful” or morally wrong in toto: a person who violates the divine law has become a moral-law breaker or outlaw of the worst kind. This is in marked contrasted with an ethical system like Aristotle’s, which antecedes Christianity, and has no term of absolute condemnation. Rather, Aristotle has terms such as “unjust” or “impious” for discrete acts or terms such as “scoundrel” or “villain” for a person with a bad character, but no way of describing someone who is irredeemably evil. Fourth, any ethical system that utilizes this framework of duty, but without the idea of the divine lawgiver, has severed the concepts of duty and obligation from the only foundation that might give them meaning. Thus, they are without meaning and illegitimate. This is an amazing insight and I would rank it among the top most insightful critiques of ethics in the history of philosophy. Certainly it is the most powerful critique of duty-based ethics that I have ever seen and it firmly cuts them off at the base and renders them absurd. Yet, Anscombe could have made an even stronger case. If she had not been a Catholic (and she was a devout, refused to use birth-control and protested abortion clinics, Catholic), she could have taken the tack that since there is no such thing as a god, the very idea of moral duty to a lawgiver does not make sense. It is, to use her analogy, “as if the notion ‘criminal’ were to remain when criminal law and criminal courts had been abolished and forgotten” (p. 6). Thus, all ideas of moral duty or obligation in this special sense must resolve to absurdity. Now, to be fair to Anscombe, she does even apply her argument to the divine command theorist and notes that even someone using a divine command framework must still justify why we have a duty to obey the divine commands (p. 8). This, of course, students of Philosophy will recognize as a take on the Euthyphro problem. Moreover, she notes that the Kantian move, that one has a duty to oneself-in-itself due to one’s noumenally rational nature will fail to justify the legislative framework, since “whatever you do ‘for yourself’ may be admirable; but it is not legislating” (p. 13), and this does seem to be a completely unwarranted jump. Thus, I think Anscombe has destroyed the idea of unchosen moral duty or obligation. It makes me curious, though, why this essay isn’t more commonly read or cited. Is it because Anscombe is a woman? Is it because people are loathe to give up their duty-ethics? I do not know the answer to this, but I am certain that philosophy is much the worse for this essay not being better known. My own position, before reading Anscombe’s excellent essay, was that all duty ethics ultimately end up being no more than systems of punishments of the form “You have a duty to do X and if you don’t, you will be punished”. For this reason, they should not even be considered ethical systems at all, but merely systems of rules and punishments (I argue this in my forthcoming book Eros and Ethos, Chapter 1). While I maintain this position, Anscombe’s idea really explains the force that some people feel for duty-ethics. An interesting question is why people feel this force in the first place. I submit that it is not because we are used to a legal framework, since few of us have cause to come in contact with the legal system, especially during the years when we are forming our moral beliefs. Rather, it is that many people learned to be moral by having morality imposed on them from the outside as they grew up, by their parents or caregivers. They never took it upon themselves to actually become moral, they simply followed the moral rules they were given in order to conform to a moral code they didn’t understand. Thus, they want to keep having morality be forced upon them, to conform to the only form of morality they know, while simply substituting the moral rules of duty-based systems for the rules of their parents. This is, I believe, the origin of the force that many feel for “moral duty,” although it is only through Anscombe’s argument that we can understand why the very term falls flat. Thus, for all these reasons, we must reject duty-based ethical systems as being both empty of content (laws without a lawgiver) and as facades hiding a brutish system of punishments. One can, hereafter, say “Do X or I will harm you,” although obviously this is no moral claim, but can no longer say “You have a duty to do X.” Such a claim is incoherent and brutish. All references in essay to: Anscombe, G. E. M. “Modern Moral Philosophy.” Philosophy, Vol. 33 (124), p. 1-19. Link to Original
  11. by Jason Stotts After much agonizing over this decision, I’ve decided that I will be publishing Eros and Ethos, my forthcoming book on sexual ethics, as two separate volumes. Thus, instead of: Eros and Ethos: A New Theory and Application of Sexual Ethics It will be: Eros and Ethos: Volume 1, A New Theory of Sexual Ethics & Eros and Ethos: Volume 2, A New Application of Sexual Ethics There are a number of reasons for publishing Eros and Ethos separately. The primary reason is that each half of Eros and Ethos is as long as most nonfiction books by itself: Volume 1 is around 100,000 words or about 210 book pages and Volume 2 is around 95,000 words or about 200 book pages. So, as you can see, publishing them separately makes sense. Moreover, each can easily stand on its own as a separate book. Most importantly, this means that I can focus my attention on finishing the final drafts of Volume 1 and getting it published right away. Volume 1 should be released within the next 6-8 months and Volume 2 should follow within the next 3-5 years. After both volumes have been published, I will release an omnibus edition, in probably 7-10 years, that will bring together revised editions of the first two volumes and include another 50-100 pages of original content. This is really exciting news for me, because it means that Eros and Ethos: Volume 1 will be published soon! I’m so excited about this. I’m excited for you to see it. I’m excited for it to be in the world. I’m excited about all of the original philosophy that it contains, which has never been done by anyone before. I’m excited to have created something that I think is amazing, new, revolutionary, and a boon for human flourishing. I’m excited to have done something about which I can be proud. To give you an idea of why I’m so excited about, and proud of, this project, let me give you just some of the things it includes: A new theory of ethics. A new theory of emotions, including how to understand the connection between a person’s beliefs and their emotions. A new theory of erotic love and better ways to think about love more generally. A new theory of sexual attraction and a full explanation of it. New ways to understand sexual orientation, sexual identities, as well as masculinity and femininity. And much more! AND, most importantly, all of this culminates in a new way to understand sex and its importance in a human life. I really think that these books have the potential to make the world better and improve people’s lives. I’ll send out another update once I have a better idea of the publication date, but it’s time to get excited about it. Link to Original
  12. by Jason Stotts I can’t believe I’ve been blogging for 11 years already! A lot has happened in the last year, so let me give you an overview of what’s been going on. If you want to stay current with things, you can subscribe to Erosophia or for a more personal touch, subscribe to my new quarterly newsletter. Last year I said I’d be done with Eros and Ethos by December of 2015. Well, that was optimistic. On the other hand, there has been a lot of work done in the last year and it’s a much better book now. It currently stand at just over 188,000 words and approximately 600 book pages. I’ve listed the current chapters below and how complete they are, with respect to the number draft they are currently on and the total number of drafts anticipated. At the rate I’m going with my current editor, I expect to have a completed penultimate draft by January and to complete the final revisions by this time next year. Part 1: The Theory Chapter 1: Ethics (Ver. 3/4) Chapter 2: Emotions and Sentiments (Ver. 3/4) Chapter 3: Love (Ver. 3/4) Chapter 4: Relationships (Ver. 3/4) Chapter 5: Sexual Attraction & Fantasy (Ver. 2/4) Chapter 6: Identity, Orientation, & Self-Understanding (Ver. 2/4) Chapter 7: Sex, Union, & Intimacy (Ver. 2/4) Part 2: Applications Chapter 8: Erotic Decadence (Ver. 2/4) Chapter 9: Faith, Mysticism, & Religion (Ver. 1/3) Chapter 10: Family & Progeny (Ver. 1/3) Chapter 11: Sex for Sale (Ver. 1/3) Chapter 12: Children & Sexuality (Ver. 1/3) Chapter 13: Polysexuality (Ver. 1/3) Chapter 14: Kink (Ver. 1/3) Chapter 15: Public & Private (Ver. 1/3) Chapter 16: Society, Sex, & the Law (Ver. 1/3) Conclusion (Ver. 1/3) Epilogue: Selected Philosophic Essays (Ver. 1/3) Last year I announced that I’m working on my first fictional work called The Wizard’s Tower. I have spent most of the last year working on Eros and Ethos, but I am pleased to announce that The Wizard’s Tower is nearly done in first draft! If you’re interested in more news about The Wizard’s Tower, sign up for the newsletter to be the first to find out what’s going on with it. If you’ve enjoyed Erosophia these last 11 years, please consider sending me some love. You can donate via PayPal: You can buy me a birthday present from my Amazon Wishlist. You can email me and tell me that my work has had some impact in your life: Jason(at)JasonStotts.com (I could really use this one right now). Or, you can like Erosophia’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ErosophiaBlog. Finally, I want to thank all of you, for a great 11 years and I look forward to many more years to come. Link to Original
  13. by Jason Stotts I’m creating a special newsletter for people who are interested in keeping track of what I’m doing and the progress of my various projects, like Eros and Ethos or The Wizard’s Tower. If you’re interested, head to http://jasonstotts.com/newsletter and sign up there. The first edition will be going out soon and will include some exclusive content not found anywhere else. Link to Original
  14. by Jason Stotts This post isn’t like most of my posts. In fact, it came together quite by accident. You see, just a little over a week ago, I watched a friend defend his dissertation and earn his Ph.D. (congrats, Dr. Moore!). What’s interesting about this is the subject of his dissertation, which was a phenomenological investigation into how we experience reading. This got me thinking about how I read and I eventually wrote him this letter titled “On Reading”: I’ve been thinking about my own experience of reading recently and have some interesting insights I wanted to share with you. First, some back-story. A couple of years ago I developed a pretty bad allergy to something that blooms in the Spring here. As a result, this year, I’ve been on antihistamines all Spring. At first I just felt tired and “out of it” and that was all the more I could describe it as. I’ve been changing antihistamines and finally settled on Allegra. Now, that’s not very interesting in itself, but it’s important to understand for what follows. Usually when I read fiction, I do not experience the words on the page and, instead, experience pretty vivid mental imagery. In fact, I know that my mind has wondered when I start seeing the words again and then I go back and pick up the thread again. I experience reading fiction as a meditative experience or trance where I am not aware of my surroundings at all and I am immersed in the story and its images. On the other hand, when I read nonfiction, I don’t experience the words imagistically. Indeed, I don’t usually find my mind populating the concretes subsumed under concepts when I think of the concepts (e.g. when I hear “table,” I don’t immediately start picturing all of the tables I have ever seen or even any of the things I know to be tables). When I do philosophy and read nonfiction, my mind stays in a purely conceptual frame, without images. When I think of arguments, I think of them as “flowing” or perhaps as links in a chain (although not with images), but rather they have a “feel” of one thing flowing or leading to another. (Partly, I’m sure, this is also my subconscious telling me whether things cohere with my own antecedent belief structure or what people call “intuition”.) Anyway, my question at your defense grew out of thinking about my own experience of reading. I realized that the act of reading must first involve perception of the words on the page. However, concepts cannot be understood perceptually and words are simply symbols to stand in for concepts, so we must process the words conceptually. For me, then, when I deal with nonfiction, my mind stays in this conceptual area that doesn’t involve imagery. However, when I read fiction, my mind converts the concepts back into perceptual data based on story (e.g. reading “the moonlight shone softly across the water, highlighting the snow along its banks, and transforming the scene into a softness that enveloped them in its embrace” would give me the visual experience of this.) Now, you might be right that this isn’t a per se perceptual experience. Certainly, it’s what we would call the imag-ination in Aristotelian philosophy of mind, or the faculty of the mind that is capable of having visual experiences that are not immediately tied to our senses. All of this, though, is partly a pre-amble to something I just realized: my ability to read is not the same right now as it usually is. Because of the allergy I’ve been on antihistamines. I’ve read several fiction books during this time, but even though they were well written and I enjoyed them, I couldn’t quite “see” them in the way I usually do. I realized that it started when I started taking the antihistamines. It seem that something about them prevents me from visualizing fiction in the way I usually do. To double check, I reread a passage from a book I’ve read several times and with which I usually visualize. It was the same: I was stuck seeing the words and not seeing the action. Moreover, I also realized it’s deeply affected my ability to be creative while I’m writing. Even when writing nonfiction, I’m struggling to access my creativity in a way I don’t usually and I’m having a much harder time writing. Because of his defense, I had been thinking about my own cognitions since then. So, imagine my surprise when I saw this essay “Aphantasia: How It Feels To Be Blind In Your Mind” by Blake Ross on Facebook. Let me give you a small sample: I just learned something about you and it is blowing my goddamned mind. This is not a joke. It is not “blowing my mind” a la BuzzFeed’s “8 Things You Won’t Believe About Tarantulas.” It is, I think, as close to an honest-to-goodness revelation as I will ever live in the flesh. Here it is: You can visualize things in your mind. If I tell you to imagine a beach, you can picture the golden sand and turquoise waves. If I ask for a red triangle, your mind gets to drawing. And mom’s face? Of course. You experience this differently, sure. Some of you see a photorealistic beach, others a shadowy cartoon. Some of you can make it up, others only “see” a beach they’ve visited. Some of you have to work harder to paint the canvas. Some of you can’t hang onto the canvas for long. But nearly all of you have a canvas. I don’t. I have never visualized anything in my entire life. I can’t “see” my father’s face or a bouncing blue ball, my childhood bedroom or the run I went on ten minutes ago. I thought “counting sheep” was a metaphor. I’m 30 years old and I never knew a human could do any of this. And it is blowing my goddamned mind. […] What did you do today? I don’t know. I don’t know what I did today. Answering questions like this requires me to “do mental work,” the way you might if you’re struggling to recall what happened in the Battle of Trafalgar. If I haven’t prepared, I can’t begin to answer. But chitchat is the lubricant of everyday life. I learned early that you can’t excuse yourself from the party to focus on recalling what you did 2 hours ago. […] And if you ask about my day, there’s a good chance that—having had no time to prepare—I’ll lie to you. It is hard not to feel like a sociopath when you’re lying about how you spent your Monday and you don’t even know why. And there is a sadness, an unflagging detachment that comes from forgetting your own existence. Imagine how I felt reading this! My mind was blown (but don’t actually form images of my mind being blown, or else we’ll be in different places). His account goes a long way in explaining the way I experience the world, although it’s not quite to the same degree as Blake. As a matter of course, I do not experience the world imagistically and my memory doesn’t work that way well. I can form mental images and hear music and such, but it’s very hard and comes with effort, I don’t simply do it (except for music, which comes easily). This has led me to have a very bad memory for what I’ve done in a day as well (or what Blake calls “experiential memory”, but a very good memory for philosophy and arguments: I can recall philosophic texts I read more than 10 years ago pretty clearly. Just like with Blake, this leads me to forget things that I’ve done, even with people I care about, unless there was also some cognitive content with the experience to tie it all together. This is one of the reasons I like taking pictures so much: I really won’t remember how things looked without them. It’s weird to think about how different my experience is from other people’s. I already knew, for example, that I am nearly indifferent to other people’s emotions: unless I already care about you, your emotions will not affect me in the slightest. Even then, I don’t always know how to handle other people’s emotions. This, however, may be tied to the same issue of visualization: I can’t actually imagine myself in your shoes (which I now assume might be literal). Now, to bring everything together, I’ve noticed that since I’ve been on the antihistamines, my visual experience has been even more paltry, closer to Blake’s, than it usually is. I would have never noticed this, except that I noticed it in how I read and my friend’s dissertation defense got me thinking about the experience of reading. So, I’m wondering if there isn’t some connection between some part of the brain that antihistamines affect and our ability to form mental images. Undoubtedly, I would be a bad test subject, because I’m already bad at it. But, maybe by standing just on the cusp of being able to do it, I was able to notice the effect of the antihistamines in a way that others don’t, because they only have a small change. Anyway, I will definitely be thinking more about this and its impact on my life, now that I have a clearer idea that its going on and how it is divergent from others’ experiences. Link to Original
  15. by Jason Stotts 1. FDA Overturns 30-year Ban on Blood Donations by Gay Men Well, sort of… Yesterday, the FDA decided that gay men (or any men who have sex with men) are allowed to donate blood IF they have not had sex with a man in the last 12 months. I guess this is a step in the right direction, but given that tests can screen out any sort of STI’s (which not only men who have sex with men have, obviously), this is still a pretty thin attack on men who have sex with men. 2. Breasts No Longer Considered ‘Nude’, says AGLC In Alberta Canada, the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission (AGLC) has ruled that breasts are no longer considered “nude”. Interesting. 3. Playboy’s Science Fiction Did you know that Playboy magazine has a long history with the science fiction genre? Neither did I. This is a really interesting look at it. [url={url}]Link to Original[/url]
  16. by Jason Stotts Affirmative consent is an idea sweeping the country. For example, look at this Inside Higher Ed article: When students at Indiana University at Bloomington are asked to describe consent, they can often recite the lyrics from a student-written musical. “Consent is unmistakable … it’s often verbal … it’s uncoerced … it’s freely given … and if you’ve got those things together, that’s consent! Consent … whoa consent!” (The full lyrics of the song are at the bottom of this story.) And as college campuses across the country adapt to a culture — and legislation — calling for affirmative consent and “yes means yes” policies, freshmen orientations are often just one touch point for a larger conversation about sexual misconduct policies across campuses. Many colleges are adding programming or are revising past education on sexual assault prevention to focus on teaching the ideas behind affirmative consent, although some institutions already had relevant programs in place. It sounds innocuous enough. In fact, prima facie, it sounds like a great idea. Consent is a good thing, so we should make sure that people are freely giving it and giving it explicitly so that there can be no misunderstanding. So, what’s the problem? Well, for one, it violates one of the most foundational principles of US Law: the principle of “innocent until proven guilty.” It violates due process and the idea that the accuser (often the State) must show that a crime has been committed. The alternative to this is that you must defend yourself from charges by showing that no crime has been committed. But, consider, how can you show that nothing has happened? Thankfully, courts are starting to rule that this idea of affirmative consent is illicit and are overturning convictions based on it. For example, in the recent case of Corey Mock in Tennessee that Reason did a good job covering. Problematically, there are now two states, California and New York, that have affirmative consent laws on the books and many other colleges and universities are pushing to implement them. So, this issue is far from dead. In the coming months, we’re going to start seeing this in the news more as people are unfairly convicted under these laws and their cases head to the courts. For my own part, while I want to encourage discussions about consent, I don’t think that affirmative consent laws are the way to go and due to their violations of some of the most important principles of law. Link to Original
  17. by Jason Stotts This is a really good and insightful article about the dangers of confusing the particular way you do something with the absolutely right way to do something. It’s also a good example of why compromise is important in relationships. My “Aha Moment” happened because of a package of hamburger meat. I asked my husband to stop by the store to pick up a few things for dinner, and when he got home, he plopped the bag on the counter. I started pulling things out of the bag, and realized he’d gotten the 70/30 hamburger meat – which means it’s 70% lean and 30% fat. I asked, “What’s this?” “Hamburger meat,” he replied, slightly confused. “You didn’t get the right kind,” I said. “I didn’t?” He replied with his brow furrowed. ” Was there some other brand you wanted or something?” “No. You’re missing the point, ” I said. “You got the 70/30. I always get at least the 80/20.” He laughed. “Oh. That’s all? I thought I’d really messed up or something.” That’s how it started. I launched into him. I berated him for not being smarter. Why would he not get the more healthy option? Did he even read the labels? Why can’t I trust him? Do I need to spell out every little thing for him in minute detail so he gets it right? Also, and the thing I was probably most offended by, why wasn’t he more observant? How could he not have noticed over the years what I always get? Does he not pay attention to anything I do? (Link) Read the whole article, it’s definitely worth it. There’s two things that I should point out: 1. Compromise in practical issues is mandatory, if you want a relationship to work. There is no person in the world who does everything so well that any other person should conform to everything they do because it’s objectively the best way to do it. On the other hand, compromise of ethical principles is never acceptable. It is never okay to sometimes beat your child, or sometimes steal, or compromise about just this murder. 2. The article is titled “Woman Realizes That She’s Been Accidentally Abusing Her Husband This Whole Time… Wow” and I think that’s a bit of an overstatement. Psychological abuse is real and really dangerous, but given only the information in the article, I don’t think that it rises to that level. Now, if the woman was fundamentally demeaning her husband and always disparaging him, then maybe it would. Either way, we should be careful that our interactions with our partners are encouraging them to live better and not causing them to live worse. Link to Original
  18. by Jason Stotts 1. Circumcision May Cause Erectile Dysfunction In case you needed one more reason to not mutilate your child. Our new study published in the International Journal of Men’s Health showed that circumcised men have a 4.5 times greater chance of suffering from erectile dysfunction (ED) than intact men, revealing what appears to be a significant acquisition factor. Robert S. Van Howe, M.D., M.S., FAAP and I found a surprisingly strong secondary finding between circumcision and ED in our survey of 300 participants (OR = 4.53, p=.0058). It was outside the scope of our article to delve deeper into this topic, but our finding does raise some questions: Are there other studies showing a similar connection? What could be the underlying cause? Bollinger, D., & Van Howe, R. S. (2011). Alexithymia and circumcision trauma: A preliminary investigation. International Journal Of Men’s Health, 10(2), 184-195. doi:10.3149/jmh.1002.184 2. “Sex Offender” has Become an Absurdly Large Category The number of things that people are calling “sex crimes” now has become absolutely absurd. The term “sex offender” should be reserved only for violent rape and pedophilia. DAYTON — A Kettering woman convicted of promoting prostitution and labeled a sex offender after she drove a friend to what turned out to be a prostitution sting was granted judicial release after serving about seven months of an 18-month sentence. But Aimee Hart, 42, is continuing with an appeal of her fourth-degree felony conviction because she doesn’t believe she should have to register as a sex offender, which she did after she was released last month. Hart was found guilty during a December 2014 trial. Link to Original
  19. by Jason Stotts Apparently the Boy Scouts of America is now allowing gay men to volunteer to be leaders. The Boy Scouts of America on Monday announced an executive committee has unanimously approved a resolution that would allow openly gay adults to hold leadership positions within the organization. The Boy Scouts of America Executive Committee on July 10 adopted a resolution that would allow openly gay adults to hold paid and volunteer positions. These include scoutmasters and unit leaders. “No adult applicant for registration as an employee or non-unit-serving volunteer, who otherwise meets the requirements of the Boy Scouts of America, may be denied registration on the basis of sexual orientation,” reads the resolution. (Link) This is definitely a big move forward for them. I think I know someone else who is excited about this: Link to Original
  20. by Jason Stotts In our culture today, we are inundated by the idea that men are nearly incontrollable sex-monsters who will stop at nothing to satisfy their needs, while women do not enjoy sex and have it merely to achieve some end. Yet, this is a relatively new development as until recently, women were considered to be more sexual. See, for a fuller account of this, Alyssa Goldstein’s excellent essay “When Women Wanted Sex Much More Than Men: And how the stereotype flipped.“ This is made all the more interesting because research suggests that this isn’t the result of changed biology, but of changed cultural expectations about the role of each sex: “When Society isn’t Judging, Women’s Sex Drive Rivals Men’s.“ I bring this up not only because it’s incredibly interesting, but I also want to challenge you to think about your beliefs about sexuality and how they shape your own behavior and your behavior towards others. Link to Original
  21. by Jason Stotts We’ve talked about children and sexuality several times on the podcast (episodes
  22. by Jason Stotts I saw this series of illustrations earlier and I think it makes a very powerful point: mature love isn’t desperate, mature love is creating a life together through little moments and many choices. While in our culture we are very entrenched in the paradigm of desperate longing (a la Romeo and Juliet), this is what immature or new love looks like. However, if we come to believe that all love looks like this, we may miss out or deprecate mature love for its constancy and commitment. But mature love is creating a life together and this isn’t, or shouldn’t, involve the desperateness of a new love that is still trying to forge itself. Link to Original
  23. by Jason Stotts Although it’s hard to believe, in just a couple of weeks, I will have been blogging for 10 years! My very first blog post ever was May 8th, 2005. To celebrate, I’m announcing another major project on May 8th, so you’ll have to come back then to see what sort of cool thing is about to happen. I will also have some more updates about Eros and Ethos and maybe even an estimated release date for you! I also want to announce that I’m going to look for some new writers to help me keep Erosophia current with new and engaging articles and essays on sexuality from a philosophical perspective. If you’re interested in applying to write, email me at Jason(at)JasonStotts.com. Lastly, if you’d like to buy Erosophia (and me!) a birthday present, here’s my Amazon wish list: http://amzn.com/w/23AHMTNF3OEUB Link to Original
  24. by Jason Stotts Spring is a time of life re-awakening. It is a time of fertility and pregnant promises in nature. A time to sow seeds in fields and wombs. For much of human history, Spring was a celebration of life and sexuality. I think it is instructive, then, to compare it to the christian ideas about Spring. To the christian, Spring is about death, because the christian is anti-human life. Their usurpation of the pagan festival of Easter, a benevolent time of life and sexuality, is a celebration of death and of the dead walking among the living. Instead of celebrating life and its creation in sexuality, they celebrate zombies and ignorance (christianity is organized ignorance, as are all religions). I think that we should reflect on how we want to live our lives: as humans in a natural world full of reason and joy or as christians, bound to pervert and degrade all they touch as they try to make the world into their own ugly vision of it. As Nietzsche says, “The Christian resolution to find the world ugly and bad has made the world ugly and bad.” I think that this Spring we should forget about the zombies and celebrate fertility by reflecting on the role of sexuality in our lives. I think we should celebrate reproduction by thanking our parents and grandparents, if they’re still alive, and appreciating our children, if we have any. I think that we should remember that we are animals, a very special kind, to be sure, but animals nonetheless and we should not rail against this fact of nature, but embrace it and our animality. In short, we should do away with christian mythology and celebrate our lives and our sexuality. We should celebrate our humanity and its greatness. Link to Original
  25. by Jason Stotts YES! I’ve made these exact arguments over and over. Of course, the ultimate reason is the religious hatred of the body and sexuality, but this video still does an excellent job. " width="500" height="282" frameborder="0" webkitAllowFullScreen allowFullScreen> Link to Original