Last year Salon.com found itself in trouble over an article by pedophile Todd Nickerson where he defended sexually assaulting children and babies. Now in another low, Salon has done another article this time about sex with animals, calling it “not that weird” and a ‘forbidden nuance’:
This week, the media went nuts over revelations in a BBC documentary about Lovatt’s interactions with a male dolphin during a NASA-funded experiment in the 1960s. “He would rub himself on my knee, my foot or my hand and I allowed that,” she said. “I wasn’t uncomfortable, as long as it wasn’t too rough. It was just easier to incorporate that and let it happen.” Eventually, it became routine. “It would just become part of what was going on, like an itch, just get rid of that scratch and we would be done and move on,” she said. During the segment, a narrator intones, “Margaret felt the best way of focusing his mind back on the lessons was to relieve his desires herself, manually.” She makes sure to clarify: “It was sexual on his part, it was not sexual on mine — sensual perhaps.”
Then came the headlines. “Woman reveals sex with dolphin.” “The woman who lived in sin with a dolphin.” “The dolphin who loved me.” “This Woman Jerked Off A Dolphin — And Liked It!” “Scientist Says Relationship With Dolphin Was ‘Sensuous.’” “Woman waxes poetic about giving precious, sensual hand-jobs to a dolphin.” “‘I had a sexual relationship with a dolphin’” (despite the quotes, she never actually said that).
Judging from the collective horrified response, you would think that a human giving a handy to an animal was an aberrant, unthinkable act. But such fondling isn’t unheard of in the realm of animal research.
There are two major published examples. The first: In 1970, anthropologist Francis Burton published “Sexual Climax in female Macaca mulatta.” She wanted to answer the question of whether female monkeys experienced orgasm. Burton placed the primates in dog harnesses and cat collars to restrict their movement. Then the researcher put a “*****-simulator” into “the animal’s ****** with vaseline as lubricant,” and moved it at a pace of two to five thrusts a second. Burton wasn’t able to definitively conclude that female monkeys could orgasm, but she did identify an excitement, plateau and resolution phase, as Masters and Johnson had identified in humans.
“I think in the field it is generally thought that a similar study would never get through an institutional animal use and care committee,” says Kim Wallen, a psychology professor at Emory University who specializes in primate sexual behavior.
The second case is that of psychologist Frank Beach and his research on beagles in the ’80s. “Most of the work he did was behavioral, looking at the effects of prenatal androgens on sexual differentiation, but some of his treated animals were unable to copulate and he wanted to know if they showed normal genital reflexes, even though they did not copulate,” says Wallen. So, he *********ed the dogs and observed their responses.
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