I suspect that you will be happy to know that Elizabeth Raine—that being the pseudonym of the medical student who was auctioning off her virginity, and not for science—has chosen to rescind her offer. (Previous link here.)
Now that she knows the free market price for her virginity-- $801,000—Raine no longer wants to consummate the transaction.
She announced the news on her blog:
The bidding closed yesterday as planned (high bid was $801,000), but I am here to tell you that the terms of the auction will not be fulfilled. With the blessings of my management and the high bidders, I have decided to put a stop to this kerfuffle (to describe it nicely) and return my focus to my medical training. I still do possess some spitefully strong beliefs about virginity, prostitution, and a woman’s right to do as she damned pleases, but school is my first priority (as it has been for my entire life). At this point, I no longer care about the auction, at least not nearly enough. This was a very easy decision.
One is saddened, again, to see that Raine, a bright medical student was incited to perform this stunt—if you have a better word, feel free to tell me—in order to make a feminist point.
In her words:
It is no longer about the money. Instead, very broadly, it is about how society continues to exercise control over female sexuality by chaining it tightly to female morality. It is about the fact that we have not left patriarchy in the past (we all know male morality is not judged by the same standard), and that a woman still cannot chose to do with her body what she pleases without eliciting condemnation and hate from those (or some of those) around her. In the eyes of some, this auction may define me simply as a ‘whore’ or a ‘prostitute.’ But they are overlooking my much larger and complex (and not terrible) character, as well as the oppressive social reasons why those labels carry so much stigma and power in the first place.
True enough, it’s not about the money. It’s about Raine’s belated recognition that--feminism notwithstanding-- her self-respect cannot be reduced to its monetary value.
There is little doubt that Raine did what she did because of what she learned in women’s studies courses. Her paragraph is a mishmash of empty feminist platitudes.
She rails about double standards and insists that no one has the right to judge her, or to affix a label to her because of her behavior. Anyone who does, she avers, is really doing the bidding of a society that oppresses women by judging their behavior.
As it happens, everyone’s behavior is judged. Except perhaps by Bill Clinton… but that was because feminists like ER chose to let him off.
People are judged by their character and character involves how they comport themselves in public. If ER did not believe that selling her virginity would have a direct impact on her life and her career, then she was grossly misinformed.
One suspects that after she attached her face to the offer—and to the risqué photos—she discovered that people were seeing her and treating her differently. It is not a good feeling and it cannot be erased by reciting a few phrases from Betty Friedan.
When Raine chose to drop the mask and to reveal her face, she explained that she had decided to do it because she was not ashamed of what she was doing. If feminism taught her how to be an exhibitionist, there again it has led her down the wrong path.
For some time now being anonymous has not sat well with me. This is because I believe this auction is my business, well within my rights, and not something I should need to hide in fear. It is a unique and advantageous opportunity (from where I’m sitting), one that I want to take, and I don’t think anyone else has the right to deny it to me – it is my virginity after all. In addition, I did not want anyone to mistake my anonymity for shame, because I am not at all ashamed of being either a virgin or a ‘whore.’ What’s more, I find this lack of shame incredibly liberating (please consider that we live in a society that shames women left and right for not fitting neatly into some sexual mold), and I did not want to risk perpetuating shame as the norm. Finally, we have come very far, and I like to think that we live in a time when a free and educated adult woman can choose to sell sex once (and legally) without having her career taken from her and her life ruined. And in the chance we do not, I might as well be the one to find out.
The cold, hard truth is: if women expose their sexuality in public; if they exhibit their private and intimate parts in public… everyone will think less of them. It’s the surest way to be disrespected.
If women want to be respected for their accomplishments, they would do well to keep their pants on.
Does the same rule apply to men? Of course, it does. Yet, the minds of most men have not been sufficiently addled by feminist ideology to believe that they should bare body and soul to make a dubious political point.
People who do not respect themselves are not respected by others. One applauds Elizabeth Raine for coming to her senses. She regained her sense of shame and decided that her virginity was too valuable to auction off in the name of feminism.
Had she done so she would have become a postmodern martyr. Such a fate would have been unworthy of her and would have cheapened her achievements.