the radical asexual

I think I might be a radical asexual. I’ve never self-identified as a radical anything, with the exception of possibly radically prochoice – but even then, I feel like “radical” is acknowledging one’s beliefs fall far outside the norm, and I think more people probably agree with the so-called radical prochoice stance than are consciously aware of it.

“Radical asexual” is not something I’ve ever seen before. I’ve seen “asexual radical”, but that seems to imply someone whose overall belief system falls into the/a radical camp, and who just happens to be asexual. So I would like to explore the notion of a “radical asexual” and “radical asexual” positions, in terms of things I would like to see, that may or may not be considered radical.

  • I would like to see the misogynistic, heterosexist, cissexist, and theocratic system of virginity abolished. At the very least, I would like to see identifying outside the system of virginity recognized as a legitimate option.
  • I would like to see an end to prude-shaming. I would like to see the slurs “frigid” and “prude” fall into disuse.
  • I would like to see an awareness of sex-normative language and a new standard of linguistic inclusivity that takes into account the asexual perspective.
  • I would like to see people stop using “sex positive” as a compliment and “sex negative” as an insult. I would like to see “sex positivity” no longer used as a benchmark for being a “true” feminist/progressive/humanist. I would like to see sexual disinterest and sexual aversion recognized as valid approaches to sex. I would like to see a system of sexual nonjudgment that validates negative and neutral opinions of sex (provided, of course, that these don’t encroach on the behavior of other consenting adults) as well as positive ones.
  • I would like to see an end to the pathologization of asexuality.
  • I would like to see comprehensive, science-based, and shame-free sex education for young people that discusses all sexual orientations as valid, including asexuality and demisexuality.
  • I would like to see an end to both the shaming and stigmatization of sexual partners of asexual people, and the demonization of asexual partners in mixed relationships.
  • I would like to see an end to the deeply-entrenched association of sexual inactivity with religious reactionary views. Instead, I would like to see asexuality validated as a form of positive* sexual agency that subverts patriarchy and theocracy rather than enabling it.

Are these radical views? Is “radical asexual” something that’s different from the mainstream views of the asexual community? Am I ready to call myself a radical anything?

*I use “positive” here to mean “something instead of nothing”, i.e. asexuality is an orientation rather than a lack of an orientation, not “positive” meaning “good”. (“Proactive” might work too.)

First published 14 Feb. 2012 at sidneyia.tumblr.com

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