I’m seeing a lot of things today in the world that are making me think very hard on these subjects. While they might not seem to have much bearing on kinky relationships, bear with me and I’ll show you how they all connect the dots.
In the World Today
The two biggest stories this last few weeks seem to be the story of unrest in the town of Ferguson, Missouri, and the atrocities committed by the fighters of the “Islamic State” in the Middle East. While these two stories seem to be completely unconnected there are some very disturbing parallels between them.
In Ferguson, there has been unrest, protests, and rioting following the shooting by a police officer of a teenager. In the days that have followed, journalists have been arrested for, well, being journalists, and tear gas and rubber bullets have been used on peaceful protestors. This is all very disturbing, despite all the confusion and misinformation.
In the Middle East the IS is expanding rapidly with its black flags and its interpretation of Islam that, my Muslim friends assure me, has as much to do with mainstream Islam as the teachings of the Westboro Baptist Church have to do with mainstream Christianity – which is to say, not much. They are driving out and/or killing those they view as unbelievers in their faith, such as the Yazidi sect of Zoroastrism (a religion officially tolerated by Islam), and a few days ago a captured American journalist was publicly beheaded.
So what would these two disparate events have to do with one another?
Authority, Humanity, and Oversight
Both events are symptoms of thee terrible errors that we humans have made again and again through history. They crop up all the time, from interactions between individuals up to interactions between nations, religions, and yes between races.
The first is the establishment of those who are in authority and those who are not. In Ferguson, Missouri, it was between the white-dominated police and the larger black community. The police are, pretty much by definition, the ones in authority, and backing them up is the court system, the judges, and the counselors – almost all, it should be noted, also white. It’s an authority of officialdom, not firepower (although there is a lot of that too). In the IS-controlled areas of the Middle East, it’s between the IS fighters and anyone they deem not a Muslim (which includes a lot of people who would call themselves Muslims, such as member of different sects). The IS fighters have all the authority (they have the guns) and the other’s do not.
The second error is in dehumanizing those who do not have the authority – the argument that somehow they are no longer to be thought of as “human” the way those in authority think of themselves and those they favor. One police spokesman in Ferguson was reputed to have said that the black community comprising some three quarters of the town’s population were no better than animals. In the Middle East the Suni-dominated IS regard the Yazidi sect not only not Muslims (technically they follow a form of Zoroastrism) but also as devil-worshippers and apostates, people who deserve nothing but death.
The third error is the loss of oversight. There is in these cases no recourse for the oppressed, because those in authority have dismantled or rendered impotent any mechanisms there may have been in place to restrict or moderate their behavior, and make them answerable for their actions. In the case of Ferguson, there are few police oversights, the courts are all on their side, and the law is too. The same is true of the IS – they have their interpretation of their holy book telling them that they are right and everything they do is justified, and that’s it. No-one will step in and stop them, and there is no justice but them.
Authority, Humanity, and Consent
Every single society that functions on a scale larger than a village has to have authority, there’s no getting away from that fact. We need police forces to catch criminals and deter crime. We need soldiers to protect our populations from other nations that would exploit them. We need leaders, and courts, and authority figures. Let anarchy loose, and leaders will select themselves (which is pretty much how the IS came into existence).
However the dehumanization of those we have authority over is another matter. When the police treat the public as their enemies and not their allies, they will soon be under siege. When the politicians stop thinking they need their electorate to get into power, we have an issue.
The other big problem is lack of oversight; that is, there has to be a system to withdraw our consent to be ruled, to make sure the police also follow the law, to keep the courts honest. In Ferguson voter registration booths have appeared, so that those previously not enfranchised can vote; they are gaining their voice, and will demand through that voice that their grievances be addressed.
That’s the thing in a democracy: we consent to be governed by a government, provided we all abide by the results of elections. We give up our authority to give them theirs, and they can then govern. The moment they stop respecting that authority is the moment we have to take it back.
Tops and Bottoms
And now, to explain why this has a bearing on my usual subjects: In a BDSM relationship, there are the same demarcations. One party, the Top or Dominant/Dominatrix, has the authority. They are the person in charge, what they say goes. The other party, the Bottom, or Submissive, is the person ruled over. The Bottom may even be dehumanized to be given the status of child, pet, or even object. Doing this removes levels of authority and humanity from them, which is kind of the idea, but while their status may change, the respect they are paid by the Top, their value to them, does not.
This is because in any healthy relationship there is a very simple oversight mechanism: the consent of the Bottom. The Submissive in the relationship should always have a means of indicating that they withdraw their consent, their safe-word. Very often this is all established before hand – the Bottom willingly gives up the authority that the Top takes on under clear contractual guidelines.
The moment the Top stops respecting those guidelines, the moment the Bottom’s consent withdraws, the relationship either terminates or goes from mutual consent to abuse. Once it enters that stage, the Bottom is obliged to fight back if the Top does not release them.
It all comes down to authority, consent, and respect from both parties.
Enough of the heavy stuff! I think pretty much all my BDSM stories hinge around consent and respect, but here’s a little teaser from two I haven’t plugged yet from the Dominance & Submission and the Dominant Displays series.
Trained for Love shows a woman’s introduction to the scene as she tries to snare her man. Jenga is a the fun game he plays with her at a party, competing with some of his guests in a game of pain and pleasure where she is the playing piece…
Excerpt from Trained for Love:
There is a pause while the penny drops.
“You have got to be kidding me.”
“No. I’m not kidding. There’s one way to convince him, Dom,” I swallow hard, after my research I have a very good idea what I am asking for. “I want you to train me to be a slave. I want you to do that, so we can show Brian that I can be part of this lifestyle. Sure, I’d rather he did it, of course, but if this is the only chance of being with him, I’ll do it. Train me, please Dom, or find me a Master who will.” My voice is shaking, but I am absolutely resolute that I will be with Brian, and nothing is going to stop me. I’ll do whatever it takes.
“You have no real idea what that would entail, Sally.”
“Maybe not, but there’s only one way for me to find out, isn’t there? If it doesn’t work, I won’t hold it against you.”
“I’ll think about it.”
The phone goes dead. I have played my last card, but I think it was an ace.
A few days pass. Then Dominic texts me a message:
Come around tonight. My place 8pm. be ready. Short skirt, no panties.
“Result!” I declare, although my stomach has butterflies in it. As soon as I am home I go through my limited wardrobe to find a miniskirt. I shower, apply my make-up, and dress in the sexiest underwear I have, a black lace bra, garter belt and stockings. Black heels, a short black miniskirt and a crisp white blouse top things off. Feeling very nervous about walking out the door like this, I nonetheless do so. Thankfully the weather is still lousy enough for me to wear an overcoat.
I had never been to Dominic’s apartment before, and did not know what to expect. He buzzes me in over an intercom, telling me to walk straight into his flat, which I do. Inside, it is dimly lit with a polished wooden floor and wood-paneled walls, interspersed with full-length mirrors. When I catch sight of myself as I hang up my coat I am shocked, because while I normally look bookish now I look like a slut. Correction, I look like a hot slut. I really do look sexy like this, I realize.
My heels click on the floor as I step hesitantly into the main living room, which is unlit.
“Stop,” Dominic’s voice speaks from the shadows. I freeze like a deer caught in headlights.
“Here are the rules: you obey every command without question. You do not baulk, you do not question, and you do not hesitate. To do so is a lack of submission, and shows you do not truly wish to be a slave. Is that understood?” Dominic speaks with finality and authority.
“Yes.” My voice cracks as I nod, then correct myself. “Yes Master.” My research is paying off already.
“Good. Now strip, and kneel.”
My stomach does a flip. My body tingles instantly. It starts in my pussy and jumps like lightning to my nipples, then plays its way across the entire surface of my skin. Nothing save a kiss from Brian has ever made me this turned on this fast.
Very self consciously I reach up to my blouse and unfasten it, and slip it off. Then with some trepidation I unfasten my bra and my perky little breasts are uncovered as I set that aside also. Swallowing hard, I unzip my skirt and push it down over my hips to my ankles, and step out of it. As ordered, I am not wearing panties, and my little bush of curls must stand out in contrast to my pale skin.
“The rest as well,” Dominic orders, as he seems to sense my doubt as to whether I should remove my garter belt and stockings. I nod, not trusting myself to speak, and step out of the shoes before removing the garter belt and slipping off my stockings. Then I sink to my knees on the polished wooden floor next to the folded pile of clothing. I am trembling, and not from the cold, I am turned on and my pussy is wet.
“Let your hair down.”
I reach up and self-consciously tug the pins out of my thick bun of hair and shake my head, letting the thick, long locks fall down over my body. It reaches almost to my waist. Few people realize my hair is actually this long.
“Now,” his voice purrs, and footsteps sound as he approaches, stepping into the light wearing black leather jeans, cowboy boots and not much else to show off firm biceps and well-defined abs. He looks cool, confident, utterly self-assured and very much in control, and his jeans have a big bulge in them. “Tell me why you are here, Sally. Tell me what you want from me?”
I swallow hard.
“Sir, I am here to ask you to train me as a slave, so that I can appeal to the man I love to be my owner.” I speak with my heart in my mouth. I have no doubt whatsoever that this is my one shot at this.
“You are aware that I will take control of your life in every way?” He paces around me, examining me like a prize steer.
“That I will require sex from you when and how I specify and that it may not be sex with me?”
“Yes Master,” my stomach flutters and I can feel the heat in my cheeks. I was already aware that this training might involve him using me, just as being with Brian might involve Brian giving me to another. All the same, I am weak at the knees now that he is spelling this out. In defiance of my conservative upbringing, my pussy is tingling and shamefully hot and wet at the thought.
“That I will punish you as I see fit for any infraction?”
“Yes Master.” That I was prepared for, and I knew it would likely be very painful when – not if – it happened. If anything, that thought frightened me the most, as I have never had to endure serious pain.
“And you are willing to sign a contract to assure all of this?”
“Yes Master.” My heart is pounding so hard I can barely hear him.
“Very well.” He walks behind me and something cool slips around my neck, and then tightens, though not uncomfortably. It is a leather collar.
Trained for Love:
Barnes & Noble: http://tinyurl.com/p828pkc
Barnes & Noble: http://tinyurl.com/oggjcp4
Bookwench I Am
A last comment! Later tonight (Monday) I’ll be doing a twenty-minute slot to take over from Bookwench I Am along with a couple of other erotica authors. They are a book-reader’s book blog on Facebook, you can find them here: