«

»

Sep 02 2007

Christian Spanking Porn

This piece originally appeared on the Blowfish Blog. I don’t really talk about my own sex life in this piece, but it may still be too much information for family members and others with, you know, boundaries. So be advised.

BeltSince this piece appeared, some changes have been made to the Christian Domestic Discipline website. The half-hearted language about consent being important for legal reasons even though the Bible doesn’t require it has been removed, and replaced with a simple, straightforward sentence that they do not condone nonconsensual CDD. And the porn (excuse me, the “Christian spanking romance fiction”) and the “CDD 101 Handbook” have either been removed entirely or moved to an area where you have to register to access. (I’m not sure, since I wasn’t willing to register.)

I doubt highly that my piece was the sole instigator of these changes, since the Christian Domestic Discipline thing was all over the blogosphere for a while, including sites with a lot more traffic than mine. But since the questionable nature of their consent and the dirty dirty nature of their stories was largely what the blogosphere commentary was focusing on (that and the crotchless pantaloons), it seems likely that these changes were made in response to that commentary and to the extensive critical traffic they no doubt received as a result.

In the case of the consent issue, I’m extremely glad that they changed the language, and can only hope that they haven’t simply removed the “wink wink, the Bible says consent isn’t required so be careful of the lawman” stuff to a less public area. In the case of the stories, I’m sorry that they’re gone, since they were weirdly hot. -GC

Christian_domestic_disciplineChristian Spanking Porn
by Greta Christina

Christian spanking porn. Not three words I ever expected to string together.

But that’s what this is. It’s not what the creators call it — but there’s no question in my mind, that’s what it is.

And I’m finding it deeply weird.

Let me explain. There’s a subset of spanking fans who are into “domestic discipline.” In domestic discipline, spankings aren’t just hot sex play: they’re used by one partner to punish the other for actual misdeeds (as opposed to fantasy role-play misdeeds). DD relationships can be hetero, lesbian, or gay, and in hetero ones either the man or the woman can wield the authority and the hairbrush. (In some DD relationships, both partners can punish each other.)

Christian Domestic Discipline is a subset of this subset. A CDD marriage is “set up according to Biblical standards; that is, the husband is the authority in the household. The wife is submissive to her husband as is fit in the Lord and her husband loves her as himself… He has the authority to spank his wife for punishment…” Etc.

There are, of course, websites. And this website (apparently the main one) has advice, information — and spanking fiction.

“Romances,” with spankings at the core, labeled for sale by how heavy the spankings are (“contains moderate spanking,” “moderate to slightly severe spanking,” “the spanking in this novel is very mild”).

In other words — spanking porn.

And it creeps me out.

So I’m trying to decide whether that creeped-outedness is fair.

I’ll acknowledge here: I’m a big ol’ atheist. Passionate and outspoken. Almost everything involving fundamentalism creeps me out. And I know that’s affecting my reaction.

But actually, my first reaction to CDD spanking porn was: This is porn. And I’m pro-porn. I have complaints about how porn often plays out in our culture… but that’s a complaint about the execution, not the basic idea. The basic idea of porn I’m in favor of.

HarlequinAnd the thing that’s interesting? This Christian spanking porn is clearly aimed at women. The curly script and pastel colors of the cover art… it’s straight from romance novels. In fact, most of it’s written by women (assuming the pen-names accurately reflect the authors’ genders).

So this is by-women-for-women porn. Independently-produced, non-corporate, by-women-for-women porn.

Which I’m almost always in favor of.

But.

Now we get to the creepy stuff — in the dirty stories, and elsewhere in the CDD writings.

There’s the stuff about how God wants the husband to be the head of the house. In all households. Not just the ones where the couple gets off on it. All of them.

There’s the stuff about how the Bible is the literal, inerrant word of God, valid for all time. Therefore, see above, about how “dominant husband/ submissive wife” is the only acceptable romantic relationship, and everything else — dominant women, homosexuality, ordinary “egalitarian at least in theory” marriage — makes baby Jesus cry.

And there’s the anti-feminist, anti-gay, anti-abortion rhetoric that’s all over this website.

So a part of me is going, “If my kink isn’t okay with them, why the hell should their kink be okay with me?”

That’s not very big of me, though. And when it comes down to it, I think everyone deserves porn that gets them off. Even fundamentalists who think I’m going to hell.

But then we have the weird hypocrisies. The weirdest of which is this: CDD advocates aren’t just against gays and feminists and anyone who’s not a fundie. They’re against porn.

Yup. The Christian spanking porn folks don’t like porn. Their site, they say, is for people who want information about CDD “without having to wade through pornographic or warped practices of what God created for marriage.”

I think they don’t want to admit that they’re spanking freaks. That’d give them too much in common with the perverts and fornicators with whom they share erotic tastes. They’ll admit that spanking is erotic… but ultimately, it’s about discipline, and maintaining a Christian household with the man at the head, as God intended.

Naughty_spanking_storiesBullshit. When you market your stories based on how heavy the spanking is (“contains moderate to slightly severe spanking”), what you’ve got is porn. I don’t care that they don’t include genital sex. The spankings are the core and dramatic climax of the stories, and the tropes — rebellion, resistance, the top’s unshakeable forcefulness, the bottom’s growing contrition and acceptance of the top’s authority, the ecstasy of submission, the obsessive attention to the physical details of the spankings, the classic implements and positions — will be instantly familiar to anyone who reads spanking porn. These aren’t Christian romances. You could find this stuff on the Spanking Blog.

Which bugs me. Hypocrisy always bugs me.

But I could stomach all that, if it weren’t for this.

Consensual_sadomasochismThe “this is consensual” disclaimer on the CDD website has a “wink wink” quality that’s profoundly disturbing. Unlike every SM advice-and-dirty-stories website I’ve seen, these folks do not say emphatically, “This kind of relationship must be enthusiastically consented to by both parties in order to work, or indeed be remotely ethical.”

Instead they say — direct quote — “Though we believe the Bible gives a husband the authority to use spanking as one tool in enforcing his authority in the home with or without his wife’s permission, in today’s world we recognize the legality that mandates that all CDD must be consensual. Therefore we will do not condone nonconsensual CDD as a rule.” (Emphasis mine. Grammatical error theirs.)

That’s not out of context. It’s on their home page. And this “non-consensual spanking isn’t legal, therefore we’re not endorsing it, even though it’s God’s will, wink wink” sentiment appears more than once in their writings.

Domestic_violenceThat’s beyond my dislike of fundamentalism. That’s implicitly condoning domestic violence — not just as acceptable, but as God’s will. (The dismissive line from their handbook “Christian Domestic Discipline 101″ about how “men are thrown in jail for looking cross-eyed at their wives” gave me chills.) I fail to see much difference between telling women they’ll be beaten up or killed if they don’t submit to their husbands… and telling them that if they don’t submit to their husbands they’ll be tortured in hell for eternity.

Which brings me back to why fundamentalism creeps me out.

If people want to be in relationships where one partner submits to the other’s authority — and bare-bottomed spankings — I say knock yourself out. But when you say that consenting to physical punishment is important because it’s legal, not because it’s ethical; when you insist that discipline of wives by husbands is mandated by God for everyone; and when you back up that claim with a contradictory melange of Bronze-age writings, many of which are profoundly fucked-up by any reasonable modern standards… then you’ve gone far outside the territory where I have to be nice and tolerant.

Either of your religion or your kink.

10 comments

Skip to comment form

  1. 1
    Ethyl

    Hi Greta — we were just talking about this over at SM Feminists, and I don’t know if you frequent over there, but thought you might like to check it out:
    http://sm-feminist.blogspot.com/2007/08/interesting-posts.html
    Enjoy!

  2. 2
    Lazlor

    Wow, to know this exists is scary. Just another step towards bringing back the wise teachings and laws stated in Deuteronomy. As a white male who controls the world I’ll have nothing to fear as long as I become Christian just in time, but isn’t that the scariest part of it all? Not to be afraid of being stoned to death, but having the power to stone someone else?
    I swear, religion is either going to die out in the next 100 years or it’s going to get real bad.

  3. 3
    the_lyniezian

    Despite being an evangelical Chrittian myself, this whole business seems a little odd to me. For a start I don’t know about the use of corporal punishmen on one’s wife? And even if I was married, I couldn’t really treat a marriage as much different from a partnership of equals in practice- then maybe that’s just my disposition. I know the Bible says that the husband has the authority, but where it condones what these guys are talking about is beyond me. (Yes, I know it says homosexuality etc. is wrong- but ceetainly it is not disproportionate to others as some make out. The thing is, ALL have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory- and thereore all are in need of a saviour!) And as for literature? Highly suspect…

  4. 4
    Some Guy

    Inflicting pain on another person is creepy, with or without the religious backdrop, or the “ooh, look how edgy and open-minded I am” posturing.
    If you get off on hitting people or being hit, you need therapy, not reinforcement.

  5. 5
    Beast FCD

    Cheesy stuff. I have always wondered about the wild eyed looks of Christian women who are married. Now I know……
    Beast FCD

  6. 6
    Jacobus

    I ran across the site described while exploring stuff about spanking. (Possibly my kink.) From what I’ve seen in the “Christian” world, and I’ve seen a lot of it, an actual Christian spanking one’s wife (implied nonconsensually) on camera for dissemination on the Net while simultaneously claiming a hyper-Konservativ view that “the Bible told me to to it” is about as likely as Falwell.com coming out for gay rights. Same for the wife – a devout konservativ/rightwing Christian woman would not go along with flashing her personal parts on the internet (God trumps hubby, in my observation.) Not that I think there’s anything wrong with the human body or spanking. I just think the entire premise of the site is BS, a “scene” masquerading as reality.
    I suggest that “Some Guy” do some reading on the viewpoints of spankos as written by them before asserting they all need therapy. I refuse to worship at the altar of political/social correctness.
    BTW, I’ve read the book, and a mandate for a husband to arbitrarily beat or even spank his wife simply isn’t there. If she needs it for her own reasons/feelings, on the other hand… why shouldn’t they…?

  7. 7
    Graphictruth

    I ran across several equally creepy yahoo groups that dealt with this, and as far as I’m concerned, they were entirely sincere.
    I’m convinced that porn – and it’s porn in the sense that anti-porn feminists usually mean it – is intended to brainwash and create an erotic justification for doing what this sort of authoritarian controlfreakism demands – beating the crap out of dissenters. And making them pretend they like it.
    So of course it’s aimed at women. It’s probably given to under-aged women by women who bore them, as a way of showing them how to please a man.
    Oh, and as far as religion goes – it has as much to do with any form of Christianity as it has anything to do with any proper form of BDSM. To people like this, God is just another excuse for doing what they would do anyway.

  8. 8
    Angela

    I think you are very wrong to single out Christians in this article. This is a very small sect, and Domestic Discipline has been around long before some of the Christians latched onto it and tried to justify it biblically.
    Domestic Discipline (DD) makes many of the same claims as CDD, minus the scripture. Look at TakenInHand and Loving Domestic Discipline.
    Stop blaming Christians for this one! DD was not originally their idea; some of them just liked it.

  9. 9
    Clytia

    i know this is old, but i had to comment:
    firstly, wow, some of these comments seem completely ignorant, or they entirely miss the point. to Angela – Greta didn’t say she had a problem with DD. She has a problem with the way these particular christians have framed it and their lack of any sense of ethics when they take consent so lightely. which leads me to:
    secondly, reading through their site now, i found this: http://christiandomesticdiscipline.com/nonconsensualconsent.html
    that’s worse than just hazy about consent. it practically says that a husband needs to pray instead of getting his wife’s EXPLICIT consent to spank her. and no mentions of safewords. and once you get started she can’t withdraw her consent.
    frankly, i’m disgusted.
    not with the spanking, of course.

  10. 10
    carrie

    cdd is porn.
    i love agood spanking now and then. but i would not like to live a spanking lifestyle.

Leave a Reply