Dropout Essays, 2018

The one thing I learned about being an English professor, a cultural theorist (no I am not a linguist or grammarian) is that we learn how to write long-winded statements. I guess I read too much Charles Dickens in undergraduate school, but I also learned that Dickens made me want to read long, drawn-out descriptions, descriptions that really showed the industrial period in London and could create an image of a character that would stay with the reader for life: “Mister Chilip looked at the paper in such a way as if to apologize to it for reading it” (quote is verbatum, as I recall). My professor at Columbia University would often say two things that I remember with fondness: “undergraduate school tries to explain how things work, and graduate school makes them confusing” and “People are sloppy creatures” so using statistics and data is also messy and not clear. If people explain a human being in simple terms (she is evil, or good), they are lying to you and probably to themseleves.

I hope you find these essays informative and challenging.

Resurrecting Phoenix: How University Writing Programs Exploit Student Writers

This is not an essay that is arguing that literature should be scrapped. I love literature and writing and dedicated my life and am paying huge student loans to do so. A student can learn a good deal in an MFA program, but it has to be with the right school and with the right teachers. The essay argues that our business model for education, a model that has already failed, is leaving students out in the cold. In order for English programs to survive, programs need to look at what is being done here on WordPress and other blogging sites. As some predicted, higher education is going to be the next bubble that bursts. I’ve been a student and teacher in higher education since 1992.

Dear Washington, We are Not Your Prey; We are Your People

The creative essay addresses the hypocrisy of U.S. foreign policy and the wordplay that is so often associated with it and, regretfully, with some on the Superme Court. When words are crafted and used to redefine meaning, more than one truth seems to appear. The premise is that if a nation treats people like scum or as expendable, something we are seeing a good deal of around the globe, the result will be the eventual destruction of the State. To save the State, the U.S. needs totally new leadership that does not feed from the hands of a few wealthy interests, one that is more aligned with the original Forefathers’ vision. Political, but probably one of my best essays.

Does Feminism have You Worried? Try Chick-in-the-Box

Using humor and my real question about what I would do if I actually had a real, life-like sex doll, the essay looks at male sexism and its push to make women objects or toys to use for male pleasure. I am fine with sex dolls. I, too, thought about getting one, but my wife’s phobia of dolls watching her and my concern about where to put a doll that costs $6000 diluted that curiosity for me. They are just silicon after all, the good ones that is, but often throughout our history we represent women as objects more than human beings. Maybe a sex doll is the answer for a guy that wants a sex object more than a woman, more than a relationship? But selling or disposing of her gets a bit more troublesome and complicated.

It’s Not Pedophilia; It’s Men; Tumblr’s Stupidity Behind Tumblr’s Porn Ban

If you ever wondered what pedophilia really is (not what the media tells us or the police), this article will help provide more insight. The media want sensation. The police work with the worst of situations. They only see one side, not the so many other sides of an issue. I rely on my years of studying sex offending and paraphilia and with my work with a variety of offenders, including my time working with child pornography offenders. Tumblr is in the background here, but their making all sex “illegal” on their platform harkens us back to the 19th century and shames everyone from all sex, sexual expression (if not appropriate as deemed by the “family safety community society”). The laws changed in the U.S. during 2018 so that third parties could be held at fault for illegal images. We will do what we always do, ban everything and criminalize almost everyone. If we treat child porn as witnessing a crime and educate people what to look for and how to report it, such would be much more effective than sweeping it under a rug. One consistent: we refuse to take human sexuality seriously as an area of study, and we refuse to believe that sex is more than what happens in the bedroom with “husband” or “wife.” It’s a variety of things. No, it’s not clean, and it will never be so unless forced upon us by a totalitarian state at the cost of our human rights. In freedom comes some danger. In totalitariansm comes torture and fear.

Girls’ Funerals and God Mothers

A tragic creative essay on my mother’s life-long dying dream and two little girls I helped the Catholic Church bury when an altar boy. The essay addresses my own vulnerability as a male abuse victim, and my effort to stop the cycle of abuse I seen perpetuated by my own father, his molestation of girls. I learned that respecting and loving girls and women played a major role in helping me be a better human being. Life is never black and white, and to think so is to think to a dangerous extreme.

The Catholic Church’s Catastrophic Failure

First published to the member’s section of the National Association of Social Workers blog, this post highlights my own abuse within the Catholic Church. No, it’s not meant to suggest that the Catholic Church is bad. There were many wonderful people in the Church that I knew for 28 years, but its avoidance and even supremacy over sex and sexual acts is doing so much more harm than good. I note how I almost became a priest while never having any sexual or romantic relationship and how such can create more danger for vulnerable people within the Church, where those abusing manipulate themselves into thinking that they are doing the right thing. In its most sinister, power does whatever it wants to do, and the unknowing fall right into its destruction.

Roleplaying and Identity: Connecting the Lolita with the Lion” by Dr. Selina Jamil

This essay was written by college professor Dr. Selina Jamil that read my book Lolita in the Lion’s Den. It is an academic, graduate-level essay that looks at how my main character Glen navigates his own abuse as a child and his attraction toward girls. Understanding himself and not denying his interests helps him lead a positive life, and he realizes that good and evil come from the same place, the same God. Offender and victim live within all of us. We need to see the worst aspects of ourselves in order to be the best version of ourselves. The danger lies in the denial. Surviving lies in seeing.

It’s Okay to Touch Ur Nuts

This essay is a humorous call to action for men that feel their testicles are hurting. This is a true story (or creative essay). Men can feel just as weird having a woman touch their stuff as, I assume, a woman does. Though I found the technician very attractive, that added to my “freakoutability.” Just having fun at the cost of my own dignity.

Thanks so much for viewing these. I hope the are useful or become so.

More to come in 2019!