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Old 10-26-2013, 11:02 PM
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kdt26417 kdt26417 is offline
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InfinitePossibility, thank you for your words of support and yes, I really really feel like I understand your post and agree with you. During the long night hours, I myself was thinking about the wild animals thing and thinking, "Wait a minute, wild animals don't really attack each other due a touch (of any kind) without permission, do they? I mean, how does an animal *give* permission anyway? Do they have some special kind of code?"

You mentioned wolf behavior and your description sounded very legitimate to me. Last night, I was practically thinking in parallel only I was picturing a pride of lions. If one lion happens to touch another lion without "permission," does that lion get attacked by the other lion? Well, I don't think so.

When speaking of wild animals and violence, their violence generally has to do with obtaining food, not with correcting each other's tactile behavior. Is that cheetah chasing that antelope because the antelope touched the cheetah without permission and incited a state of rage in the cheetah? Heck no. That cheetah is hungry and wants lunch (or dinner, or whatever). Same reason why a spider attacks an innocent butterfly. The spider is a meat-eater. It *has* to resort to violence in order to survive.

Now let's take plant-eaters. What sort of things incite violence between them? Oh, perhaps mating contests, although those are mostly just posturing. "There, I proved I had the biggest horns, so I get to run things around here and mate with the females." Beyond that, there doesn't seem to be that much that gets them all that excited. An unsolicited touch? between two plant eaters? Right, I'd not expect any violence to happen in such a case. (Hmmm, we do think of some plant-eating dinosaurs as defending themselves with their horns from a meat-eater.)

So meat-eaters appear to be the only wild animals that resort to much violence at all, and when they do, it's because they're, well, meat-eaters, not because someone touched them without their permission. Meat-eating plants such as venus flytraps resort to violence for food too, although yeah the violence is triggered by touch. "Fly lands on me; I close my jaws around it and start digesting away. Cause and effect." And that's the only life form (not counting microbes I guess) I can think of that reacts with violence to touch.

Humans are rather unique animals in that some humans initiate violence for reasons that have nothing to do with food. Humans, in fact, have quite a range of bizarre rationales they create in their minds for initiating violence. Make no mistake, humans are omnivores (i.e. meat-eaters in part) and as such will certainly kill an animal for the food. But humans will also injure, torture, and kill each other over things as abstract as religious doctrines. So wild animals are actually pretty peaceful compared to humans -- even meat-eating animals.

Now, re: sex and clothing ... one of the pro-nudity arguments I've heard is that clothing can at times be more sexually arousing than nudity. Kind of a, "the forbidden fruit that I can't see," type of philosophy. Sometimes when a person demonstrates that they have "nothing to hide," there then seems to be nothing to make a big deal about. Okay like, not that it always works that way, just that for argument's sake it can sometimes work that way.

So yes, I'd agree that people can certainly wear clothing for sexual reasons, and their choice of clothing can correspondingly have a sexual effect. I mean as I mull it over, it seems to me like clothing has an enormous range of potential meanings, many of them symbolic (e.g. the symbolic meaning of a uniform). And yes, sometimes the meaning is simply considerateness towards other folks who aren't comfortable with, and who aren't ready to see, nudity. Most of the time, I feel like the wearing of clothes is mostly the result of plain old habit (and hey who's not more comfortable adhering to habit).

Maybe my problem is that I'm just too conventional to "get" unconventional things? I did grow up in an awfully conservative environment, and even today, as a polyamorist, I am more specifically a polyfidelitist and surely the most conservative (and vanilla) kind of polyamorist. Now when someone else has a contrasting point of view, I kind of like to learn to understand that point of view when I can. But sometimes it's a relief to hear a seemingly friendly/familiar kind of voice, so, InfinitePossibility, I do thank you for your post. I just envy you for your superior skills in diplomacy!

Kevin T.
Love means never having to say, "Put down that meat cleaver!"
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