This country boy, you really hadda wonder. I know this article is a late response to the ban but I’ve been busy, forgive me.
I tend towards anger when writing about feminism for the Caribbean but this time, truly, I am utterly bemused. Aside from the fact that banning sex toys is absolutely ridiculous and there are zero realistic, evidence-based reasons why they should be banned; fear not, I am not going to condemn this stupid ban in a fit of rage. Instead, I will publicise my undying love and appreciation for sex toys, hopefully encouraging folks of every gender to open their minds just one teensy bit. Strap in ladies and gents.
Unsurprisingly, this ban debacle has caused many Trinis much bewilderment. The general consensus is that the majority of people (men, mostly) are amazed that people actually use sex toys. I’m sure that those of you who are unacquainted, conjured images of whips, chains and a whole host of items from the latest Fifty Shades movie. Some, it seemed, were glad that there is a ban in place to stop this “unnatural” and “unholy” addition to love making. Jokes were even made about HiLo (still not over that name change) having to up their stock of cucumbers. Hilarious responses but nonetheless, clearly from the perspective of someone who has never held a sex toy in their life.
Before I start, there are two things we need to separate here: baby making and sexual pleasure. If you are only interested in sex for baby-making and only have sex (obviously heterosexual sex) when the female is ovulating, stop reading. Truly, stop reading right now only if every time you make love, you are truly wishing for a baby. Stop reading if you have never, nor will never use contraception. To you, sex is an act of reproduction and nothing else. Everyone else, I’m guessing about 99.9% of you, if you like sex because it feels good, on we go.
Once you separate that sex can be for baby making AND for pleasure, grab your magic carpet because you have discovered a whole new world. Here’s an analogy: we eat food for nourishment yes? But also, some foods taste amazing yet offer little nutritional value. Sometimes (oftentimes) we eat food for pleasure alone; for example, popcorn, tamarind balls and any food consumed on the Avenue past 1am. Food is for nourishment yes, but it should be enjoyable. If not, we’d all be very happy to eat bark, bird seeds and unseasoned, boiled chicken. In fact, there would be no need for seasoning at all and the entire economy of Paramin would collapse. In this world, food doesn’t “need” to taste good, it is simply fuel. That is silliness. Obviously.
Sex is the same: we can have it for practical baby making reasons but more often than not, it’s about pleasure and emotional connection with another person(s); and this kind of sex is inclusive of all partnerships by the way, for you heteronormative folks.
According to the Collins Dictionary, a sex toy is defined as “an object that is used by some people to get sexual pleasure”. This definition is broad, as it should be, and proves yet again how silly this ban is. If people are getting sexual pleasure from cucumbers, according to law and this definition of a sex toy, cucumbers are illegal. But you’re not concerned with cucumbers, you’re concerned about the balls, whips, chains, dildos and cock rings, aren’t ya? (If that last sentence has made it to publication, my editors must reallyyyyy trust me)
What we need to appreciate here is that (wo)mankind has been using machines to make life more enjoyable literally since we were living in caves. Likewise, a sex toy is a marvellous invention that can (sometimes) give more pleasure to an experience in the same way that using matches make it easier to start a fire and a stove makes it easier to cook our unseasoned, boiled chicken. I will never be able to handwrite and edit this article as efficiently as when using a computer, again, here is a machine that does its job better than a human can by herself.
Also, the clitoris, I’m guessing many men haven’t heard of it. It’s one of the things that make women orgasm. That thing needs quite a bit of work to get pumping. Aside from the absolutely abysmal sex education that the Ministry has put in the syllabus, you’d swear that the female orgasm was a myth spread about by the lesbians.
I mean honestly, when men orgasm, it is literally called “finishing”. Um, hello? You’re not finished until everyone is finished.
For male genitals, the erogenous zone is inches long. For us females, it is genuinely the size of a pigeon pea. Sure, human hands can make women soar but sometimes, oftentimes, a machine can do the trick in half the time. Think about it like this: sometimes it is wonderful to cook a meal over a fire that has been nurtured over time, but sometimes we just need the flame of a gas stove to cook with ease and precision. Cooking with a gas stove can be just as intimate as a wood fire, but to be honest, you can probably make a more varied dish by using all the help you can get.
Basically, I will never understand our tendency to think of sex toys as unnatural. I haven’t done long division since SEA because I discovered the calculator, something that is more accurate, 10 times faster and, you guessed it, a machine. That’s not to say I don’t enjoy long division sometimes Machines are great and if you don’t think they are, you gotta up your game son.