Summary: This post is about the objectively stupid claim that feminism makes Sweden a really bad place to be an even modestly considerate sexually active heterosexual man. Sweden!
Question: Which of the following three items is not like the other ones?
Item #1: According to this Time Magazine archive article from 1964!:
Sweden, which generally plays it lightly, last week was in an uproar about sex. The cause was a petition of protest to King Gustav VI Adolf signed by 140 eminent Swedish physicians, including the King's own doctor. Their plea to the monarch and to the government: take swift steps to stop sexual laxity, which "is a menace to the vitality and health of the nation."
For years, in Sweden, premarital intercourse has been widely condoned, and the government provides legal abortions when deemed "in the mother's interest." The result, warned the doctors, has been a tide of extramarital pregnancies and mounting venereal disease—with most of the victims young people. Sweden's gonorrhea rate has jumped 75% in five years, and of last year's new cases, 52% were among teenagers.
Reform Talk. The physicians placed the blame squarely on Sweden's schools, where sex education starts in the first grade, pointing out that young minds —unless taught differently—can confuse instruction with encouragement. Arguing that "chastity in no way is harmful to health," the doctors declared that "monogamous marriage [with] common responsibility for the children, is the natural order of life." In sum, the doctors urged schools to teach "what is right and wrong."
Source: Time Magazine: March 06, 1964
And item #2: And in early 2009 Kommissarie F. Curiosa of Sweden's English-language The Local said
With one of the highest birth rates in Europe, the Swedes seem to be pretty prolific when it comes to making babies, but even after six plus years of living in Stockholm, I'm still not sure how Swedish relationships actually happen.
The only obvious explanation seems to be massive quantities of alcohol. In other words, Swedish babies wouldn't exist without Finnish booze cruises and Systembolaget.
In recent months, The Local has reported that Swedes are much less inclined than their European counterparts to spend vast sums of cash in their efforts to find a mate. This didn't surprise me at all. That's because they spend it all on alcohol trying to get themselves drunk enough to talk to a member of the opposite sex.
I know that it will seem ungrateful to be accusing my host country of being a nation of stingy alcoholics, and I'll be the first to admit that a few drinks can be a fantastic social lubricant. It's probably also a case of “it's not the Swedes, it's me,” but Swedish mating and dating rituals (and usually in that order) appear to be a very slow process that go nowhere (except the bedroom) fast.
In a nutshell, it goes something like this:
A) Meet at a mutual friend's party.
B) Get really, really drunk.
C) Make out. Sex is optional.
D) If you're lucky, you are sober enough to save the other person's telephone number in your mobile, AND to put it under the correct name.
E) Send a text message along the lines of "last night was nice. Shall we have a coffee sometime?"
F) Spend hours analyzing the various ways in which aforementioned text message could be misinterpreted. Get your friends involved.
Source: The Local
Item #3: Via of Echidne of the Snakes
Source: Echidne of the Snakes
Yeah, Sweden's such a "feminist Saudi Arabia" that Assange was easily able to hook up for casual sex with two separate, consenting Swedish women in less than 24 hours.
My understanding, actually, is that it's approximately as easy to have heterosexual sex in Sweden as it is to have gay male sex in San Francisco. I.e. pretty bloody easy. And for approximately the same reasons: however many class or income barriers might exist in San Francisco, since everybody having gay male sex is... well... male. And so on a gender level they're pretty much going to treat each other as sexual equals.
The intent of all those ferocious Swedish feminists is to... create an environment where sexual equality between heterosexuals there is as routine as is equality between homosexuals here.
M'kay. Now. Let's posit a little scenario. One that takes the San Francisco analogy a little further. Let's say Julian Assange is gay instead of straight. And let's say Assange had dropped into San Francisco instead of Stockholm last year. And let's say Assange hooked up with an anally topped two men in 24 hours. And let's say that in one case he "accidentally" neglected to use a condom, and in the other case he didn't use a condom when, after properly condomed sex he penetrated his partner a second time without a condom while the partner was asleep.
In those circumstances would a hypothetically gay Assange's male partners have any cause for complaint? Fucking right they would! In fact I believe in quite a few states they could file criminal charges, and in a few others prosecutors might file charges even if the partners themselves said it was no big deal.
Here's the even bigger trick, though. If these hypothetical partners of a condom-tossing Assange kicked up a fuss would we say "oh boy, are those gay guys politically correct?" Would we call them militant homosexualist? Would we call California, or New York, or... Illinois, Missouri, or Oklahoma(!) militantly homosexualist for their "knowing transmission" laws? Why that would be no.
With that little thought experiment out of the way, what do Assange's antics look like now? A charismatic if somewhat narcissistic young man kites into Sweden, easily arranges consensual sex with two women (at least! remember only two women complained!) And due to their intensely egalitarian upbringing the young women felt as comfortable hooking up for sex with a man as a gay man in San Francisco would. But also like San Francisco men those women expected to be treated with equal consideration.
And when all he did was skip condoms when he, and they, knew he was sperm-positive and could knowingly transmit pregnancy they went all "feminist Saudi Arabia" on him?
Dudes! Do you have any idea what kind of heterosexual casual-sex paradise America, England, or, say, Germany would be with the kind of "feminist Saudi Arabia" values Assange was carping about?
Still not convinced? Let's put it another way then, hmm. Let's say you're a sex-loving heterosexual in a culture where casual heterosexual liaisons between social equals are as easy as arranging casual gay ones because by both custom and law all parties, women and men, have equivalent or equal degrees of faith and trust in the system. Then along comes some coarse Aussie dork who's used to the idea of sex as something that has to be purchased, extorted or otherwise "scored" off of women... and he thinks that's a good thing because any sheila who didn't have to be extorted into sex is either a slut or a whore. Oh yeah, and he thinks it's of zero consequence to him if he gives a sex partner a STI or an unwanted, unplanned pregnancy and when he gets to your town instead of picking up on the handful of social rules and basic hygiene that keep your very-mutually-beneficial sex lives humming smoothly he basically goes out of his way to avoid using condoms even when his partners expect him to use them.
Even if for some reason you didn't think this was unacceptable behavior on strictly egalitarian grounds would you be happy with this guy peeing in the community water supply like that? No. You'd want him called out on the carpet so fast his comb-over toupee would still be hanging in midair like Wylie Coyote.
Now. Does this have any bearing on whether the charges against Assange are trumped up? No, not really. If Sweden's applying it's laws unevenly that's a nuisance. But is there a problem with the laws themselves? I'd argue, forcefully, that for sex-loving heterosexuals, particularly for sex-loving male heterosexuals the answer has to be no. Because, seriously, Sweden? We're talking about a country where (according to the aforementioned post from The Local) it's far more common to fret about asking for a romantic date after the third time you've had sex than vice versa! And you know one of the biggest reasons it's so easy to have that kind of casual sex in Sweden? Because feminism won! Assange just didn't get the memo and thought he could treat Swedish women like the 2nd-class pieces of shit Australians grow up getting away with. And he got busted for it. (I'll ask the question once again: what possible incentive would even deeply anti-feminist Swedes have for letting foreigners screw up their sexual gravy trains? None? Right in one.)
Kasheesh! Like we should all have those problems Swedish men have!