Interesting profile in the New Yorker this week of an anti-Kinsey crusader named Judith Reisman, who is undeterred by the fact that the sex researcher’s eponymous reports were published half a century ago:
The recent release of “Kinsey,” a film about the famous mid-century sex researcher, has made this a busy time for the anti-Kinsey movement. Most Americans no longer give much thought to Kinsey as a societal force, but his detractors believe that his significance can hardly be overstated. A recent newsletter of the abstinence-education group Why know? compared the publication of “The Kinsey Report,” in 1948, to the attacks of September 11th, and labelled Kinseyism “fifty years of cultural terrorism.”
* * *
A sixty-nine-year-old independent researcher with a Ph.D. in communications and a former songwriter for Captain Kangaroo, Reisman is the president of the Institute for Media Education and the lead author of “Kinsey, Sex and Fraud” and “Kinsey: Crimes and Consequences.” In one article, Reisman describes Kinsey as “a scientific and moral fraud, a certifiable sexual psychopath as well as a sadomasochistic pornography addict and a sexually harassing bully.” Though largely unknown outside social-conservative circles, Reisman has been influential within them. She has served as a consultant to the Departments of Education and Health and Human Services and was given seven hundred and thirty-four thousand dollars by Ronald Reagan’s Justice Department to study pornography. More recently, she has been active in the rise of abstinence-only education; in June, her colleagues gave her an Abstie Award for lifetime achievement. Last week, Reisman testified at a congressional hearing about the dangers of pornography addiction, saying that police should be required to collect evidence of pornography consumption at any crime scene.
* * *
To a reader of Reisman’s scholarly papers, it sometimes appears that there is little for which she does not hold Kinsey responsible. In her research on gays, for instance, she has written that the “recruitment techniques” of homosexuals rival those of the Marine Corps. The Kinsey paradigm, she holds, created the moral framework that makes such recruitment possible. Reisman also endorses a book called “The Pink Swastika,” which challenges the “myths” that gays were victimized in Nazi Germany. The Nazi Party and the Holocaust itself, she writes, were largely the creation of “the German homosexual movement.” Thanks to Alfred Kinsey, she warns, the American homosexual movement is poised to repeat those crimes. “Idealistic ‘gay youth’ groups are being formed and staffed in classrooms nationwide by recruiters too similar to those who formed the original ‘Hitler youth.'”
Easy to dismiss her as a crank, but she’s the sort of crank to whom our Republican overlords give face time. And that’s really the point here: if you voted for Bush, then this, too, is part of what you voted for.