I had never heard of www.returnofkings.com before this morning. Frankly, it was a happier, simpler time. After all, why would I want to have heard of a website that promotes articles with titles such as "Never Fully Give A Woman Your Loyalty" or which features this charming description of the female sex: "the majority of them are leeches, with only a vagina to offer you." The articles on the website sound as though they were written by bitter, sad guys who've not yet come to terms with the fact that Page 3 models are airbrushed (let alone the fact that a growing number of people are sick of seeing women reduced to a pair of tits in the nation's biggest-selling family newspaper) and who wrote their backwards, misogynistic tirades in between furious masturbation sessions, whilst shrieking: "I AM A MAN! A MAN! HEAR ME ROAR, BITCHES!" There's even a caveat on the site that women and homosexuals are "forbidden" from commenting on articles and will be immediately banned. It's truly sad.
Sad, but frightening. Because these are people who almost certainly do hold these vile opinions. There's nothing on the RoK website that makes me think it's supposed to be satirical. There's nothing that convinces me that it's just a joke. Not that that would make it any better. We already live in a world in which a woman can be raped and all the press are concerned with is whether her rapist will be allowed to play football again. A world in which a TV presenter can casually state that that rape "didn't cause bodily harm," implying that it was therefore not that bad. Um, note to Judy Finnegan? Rape is the non-consensual forcing of a penis (or fingers etc) into a person. FORCING. Against their will. Please do take the time to explain to me how forcing something into a person isn't going to cause them any harm, physically or emotionally, because I'm ever so intrigued.
The "article" that brought this website to my attention this morning was something a friend posted on Facebook: 5 Reasons Why Girls With Piercings And Tattoos Are Broken. My friend has piercings and tattoos. I have tattoos. I read this steaming pile of unadulterated bullshit and despite the vast array of woman-hating and ridiculous that pervades the entire site, it was this piece I decided to respond to. Well, I've spent a good portion of the last few months plotting a cover-up tattoo, so it seemed appropriate. Now, before I go any further, I realise that I'm bringing attention to this sad excuse for a human and that's what he, like all pathetic bullies, wants. But I'm not a subscriber to the "don't feed the trolls" school of thinking. I'm a subscriber to the "let's shine a light on these idiots and explain why what they're saying is wrong and not in the least bit funny." It's a less catchy name, granted...
So... Let's go through the original blog bit by bit, shall we? Buckle in and steady yourself; this isn't going to be pleasant...
So, girls with tattoos and piercings (besides having their ears pierced, because ooh, that's allowed) are "slags who fall in and out of guys' beds at a moment's notice." Apparently women with tattoos will definitely cheat on you, too.
Okay, let's get personal, shall we? I have four tattoos. I've also never cheated on anyone in my life (and abhor cheating full stop) and I can count the number of sexual partners I've had on one hand. Not that that even matters. Are we really so utterly backwards as a society that we think it's okay to judge people on their physical appearance in this manner? Is "she has tattoos, therefore she's a whore" an acceptable thing to write, even if it was in a satirical manner? My mum had a tattoo done on her 60th birthday. She's been faithfully married to my dad for over thirty years. Is she a whore? Of course she isn't. Judging someone's sexual morals on appearance alone is a fairly pathetic thing to be doing and it's an utterly hypocritical thing to be writing about on a site that actively encourages men to shag around. Because you know, men are allowed. But we women have to shut up and do as we're told, because reasons.
Also, women are sluts because we're willing to be tattooed on our naked skin? Has the ape that wrote this not heard of men having tattoos done by female artists? Because... That's a thing that some guys who aren't misogynistic bastards actually do. Those slags.
Oh noes! We have no foresight! We haven't ever given a moment's consideration as to what our tattoos might look like in twenty or thirty years time! Of course we haven't; we were probably too busy shagging guys in alleyways, whilst planning to marry someone rich and obliterate his bank account, like the worthless, manipulative little sluts that we are...
Except... Why is this only applicable to women? I mean, the obvious answer is that this site is run by and written for by men who view women as nothing but vessels for their tiny penises and it's obviously abhorrent to them to consider that men and women might make similar choices and go through similar thought-processes. I can tell you that I've considered how my tattoos will age and I've taken care of them in the correct manner to ensure I limit any damage to them over time. Shocking, I know, but I managed to take time out from shoe-shopping with daddy's credit card to do such a thing as look after my own body art. Try to pick your jaws up from the floor, RoK.
Oh and the end of that particular argument is that women who have tattoos are too dumb to be the mother of your children. I WEEP for the sexist father my future babies will never have. I mean really, this might mean I have to breed with someone who respects people of my gender. HEAVEN FORBID!
Soooo... We're now into total and utter lunacy. This is no longer an article written by anyone who can call themselves a writer, but an impotent wail against cognitive reasoning. If a girl has tattoos, she's inherently selfish and won't look after you when you're ill and will deny you sex for no reason. That's like shrieking: "Oh my GOD, that man is wearing a hat! I BET HE ALSO DROWNS KITTENS, THE SELFISH BASTARD!" There's literally no link whatsoever. The argument is meant to be that a woman choosing to have a tattoo is a selfish act, because she's only thinking of herself, which is just ludicrous in the extreme. I never went into a tattoo parlour, crying: "HAHAHAHAAAA, INK ME SO THAT I MAY IGNORE THE SUFFERING OF THOSE I LOVE FOREVER!"
And is the author of this piece actually suggesting that women shouldn't be able to make the decision to have a tattoo, because it's selfish to do so? That's the impression I got and frankly, if a man ever told me that I was undateable because I have a few (small, tasteful) tattoos and that I was selfish to have them, I'd waste no time in closing the door on his sorry backside. I've been in an abusive relationship, thanks. I'm controlled by nobody these days. It's my body, not yours. And if you're reading this as a man who genuinely believes that if I have a tattoo, I will no longer conform to your standard of beauty and I am therefore a selfish, "moody, unlikeable c*nt," then I wish you lots of future happiness with the sweaty sock you'll be wanking into for the rest of your life.
Okay, time for a trigger warning with regards to rape/sexual assault...
...So, women with tattoos are boring. Again, there is nothing like generalising an entire community of people, is there? Why is it okay to do that with tattooed women? We shouldn't accept an entire race being generalised against, so why an entire gender? I don't believe that my tattoos make me any more interesting than I was before I had them. My tattoos are representative of times in my life or things I'm passionate about. If they become a talking point, great, because I have had some very interesting conversations, for example with Manics fans who've recognised the lyrics in the tattoo I have on my back. But that's not why I had them done. And they aren't what makes me an interesting person. What makes me interesting is that I have passions beyond dissing an entire sex online (because I know that for all the half-brained dimwits reading RoK and grunting in agreement, there are a hundred decent guys, wondering why such loudmouthed losers are letting the side down). Sure, there'll be people I meet in life who think I'm boring, but it has bugger all to do with my tattoos and probably much more to do with a personality clash. Because whilst I disagree with people who think I'm dull, I usually don't actually think much of them, either. And that normally comes from having not made a snap judgement based on whether or not they have body art.
Before we move on to the final part of the RoK blog and therefore the final part of mine, does anyone else think the last line captured in the above image sounds like sexual assault? "I derived incredible pleasure from shoving my cock in her mouth to shut her up."
"Shoving." That sounds consensual, right?! Except... No, not really. And I'll be brutally honest here and reference my own experience of an abusive relationship - I know firsthand about being "shut up" that way. My ex wasn't usually rough about it, but he was misgynistic enough to tell me I needed something in my mouth to stop me talking. This was the line that made me determined to write something about this despicable article and the vile site it came from. If that's meant to be a joke, it's not funny. If it's serious... I am so glad for the writer's ex that she is no longer with this disgusting excuse for a human. I hope she got the same level of support that I did.
Yeah, so... Ablism is a great thing to end on, right? As it happens, I've suffered depression. I'm not "mental" though and I've never "cut (anyone) with a knife." I sincerely doubt there are more tattooed people with mental illnesses than there are non-tattooed people.
The blog ends with suggesting that if a man is looking for a girl to "wife-up" (lucky us!), he should choose someone who hasn't "mangled their body beyond repair."
Well, to that, I say: "THANK GOD." I have literally no desire to be desirable to the likes of this man. Although to call him that is an insult to every decent man I've ever known. If this is parody, it isn't funny. If this is serious... We have a bigger problem in society than I thought.