“Hillary Clinton is responsible for her husband cheating; if he received at home what he needed to satisfy his needs he would not slept with all those woman. She is fair game to be asked these questions.”

 

I saw this on Facebook. While a politician’s infidelity in this strange country besotted with Puritan hypocrisy is often an issue in elections, this is probably the first time the efficacy of a politician in meeting his or her partner’s sexual needs has become a criterion for executive leadership. I would love to see how a vetting committee would compose this question—or score it.

 

The original notion, of course, implies that a wife is obligated to meet her husband’s sexual needs. Does he have a similar obligation? Does marriage erase the ability of either partner to consent to the timing and the manner of engaging in sexual intercourse?

 

There was a time when married women were considered the property of their husbands. He had total control of her finances, her possessions, her body, and her children’s bodies. She had control of absolutely nothing. She was not an individual but a “thing” that could actually be “put by” or discarded for any number of infractions. We see this today in cultures where a husband is free to murder a daughter or wife for tarnishing his honor. Women who have been raped are considered adulterers, and stoned to death.

 

Ownership, of course, is the means by which patrimony and patriarchal entities thrive. A way, perhaps, of preserving a man’s genetic line. The need for sexual possession, in a herd or a house, is perhaps an instinct, although much of human evolution veers away from dependence on mere instinct in favor of reasoning. I am not a cow and you are not a bull, neither literally or figuratively.

 

In popular romance tales, the woman melts when he grabs her and says, “Mine! You are mine!” This, dear reader, is figurative. In actual love, she is his as much as he is her’s.

 

And of men’s needs, so a woman has needs—biological, emotional, intellectual. You do not die if you do not have sexual intercourse. That is a biological truth.

 

Bill Clinton committed adultery. That has nothing to do with Hillary Clinton’s adequacy as a presidential candidate. That topic is offered as a smokescreen to avoid intelligent civil discourse. And to further a mindset that relegates women to the bedroom and the kitchen.

 

A married woman has a right to say “no” to her husband. A married man has the right to say “no” to his wife.

 

Get sexual innuendo and gender bias out of the conversation.