By Michael Gill
Why is the sexuality of individuals with highbrow disabilities usually deemed “risky” or “inappropriate” by way of lecturers, mom and dad, help employees, doctors, judges, and the media? should still sexual citizenship depend upon IQ? Confronting such questions head-on, Already Doing It exposes the “sexual ableism” that denies the truth of people who, regardless of the limitations they face, actively make judgements approximately their sexual lives.
Tracing the background of efforts within the usa to restrict the sexual freedoms of such persons⎯using tools comparable to pressured sterilization, invasive contraception, and gender-segregated dwelling arrangements—Michael Gill demonstrates that those frequent practices stemmed from dominant perspectives of disabled sexuality, now not least the proposal that intellectually disabled girls are excessively sexual and fertile whereas their male opposite numbers are sexually predatory. interpreting felony discourses, intercourse schooling fabrics, and information tales going again to the Seventies, he indicates, for instance, that the serious specialize in “stranger danger” in intercourse schooling for intellectually disabled contributors disregards their skill to independently decide on actions and sexual partners—including nonheterosexual ones, who're usually handled with heightened suspicion. He additionally examines moral concerns surrounding masturbation education that goals to control individuals’ sexual lives, demanding situations the notion that these whose sexuality is managed (or rejected) will not be reproduce, and proposes popularity of the perfect to develop into mom and dad for adults with highbrow disabilities.
A powerfully argued demand sexual and reproductive justice for individuals with highbrow disabilities, Already Doing It urges a shift clear of the compulsion to regulate “deviance” (better recognized this day as damage aid) as the correct to excitement and highbrow incapacity aren't together particular. In so doing, it represents a necessary new contribution to the continuing debate over who, within the usa, could be allowed to have intercourse, reproduce, marry, and lift young children.
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Extra resources for Already Doing It: Intellectual Disability and Sexual Agency
Others appear to need regulation or oversight. Children under the age of sixteen (or eighteen, depending on the location) are assumed not legally able to consent to sexual activity; adults participating in sexual activities with minors are rendered criminal partially because of an assessment that the minor lacks the ability to consent to and understand the ramifications of the sexual act. One of the lasting contributions to discussions of sexuality that feminists have offered include a reminder that sexual relations can be as much about power and control as they are about pleasure and desire.
After getting to know each other, Tony and Grace decide that they want to date. After a few months pass, Tony and Grace decide that they want to become sexually active with each other. Neither individual has ever received any sort of sex education. When Tony and Grace approach a staff member at the day center asking if they can receive some sort of sex education, the staff member decides that there is a need for this service. The staff member advertises the upcoming sex education class and within weeks thirty adults with intellectual disabilities are enrolled in the class.
In addition, intellectually disabled individuals are also generally not assumed sexually attractive or desirable partners, especially by those without intellectual disabilities. As such it is assumed that their sexual rights should be protected while their sexual expression should be shunned and silenced. These assessments and assumptions are defining characteristics in how the system of sexual 36 Questions of Consent ableism operates. Individuals are restricted from certain sexual actions through narrow conceptions of competency and agency, as interpreted through able-bodied standards.
Already Doing It: Intellectual Disability and Sexual Agency by Michael Gill