Informed consent is beyond sex, all about boundaries, and never forever (Column)

Consent Kink and Beyond by Bettie Rage

How many times have you made little Tommy give Grandma a hug, or scolded him because he didn’t want to give Aunt Sue a kiss? Or given into that hug at the family barbecue from the creepy neighbor that stopped by, because you didn’t want to seem rude? Remember how it felt when that person grabbed your ass at the bar? Ever been pressured into having sex with someone? These scenarios are all consent violations. I know I am guilty of the first scenario with my own children. It wasn’t until I entered the Leather…

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“Letter to Lori:” transgender man reaches back in time to former self

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Dear Lori, I know things are rough right now. I know that every day carries such an overwhelming feeling of dread and confusion. I know you’re afraid to go to school, that you feel sick every morning and think it’s hopeless, like it’s never going to stop hurting. I know it seems like the taunts will never stop, the things other students, even teachers, say to you. Things like “Amazon,” dyke, freak, linebacker, or lezzie. Like they’ll never stop asking you things like,  “Why can’t you just stop trying to…

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Surviving and thriving: a new family within the Leather family

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I have been to quite a few away-from-home events over the last couple of years and often have seen my Leather family posting about their “event drop.” But I’ve never really experienced it. I thought maybe I was broken, or maybe didn’t have my heart in it. Maybe that was why I was completely fine upon returning home from most events, ready to go with house duties, mom duties, work, and “let’s get it done.” This time is different, so very different. This time, I was helping kick off a…

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Happy headspace, with or without a handler, is the heart of human pet play

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I have a pet. A Pup. His name is Pup Who, and I adore him. I’m not talking about a normal pet, like you might have. Though I also own the kinds of pets YOU might own (cats and dogs), I’m talking here about the pets in my kink and Leather world. I’m talking about human pets. Like your pets, they are beautiful, loving creatures. They want to play, to be stroked, to cuddle, to be mischievous, to be kept safe. They are loyal and often full of service for…

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“We belong:” the Leather community’s pivotal role in Pride

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Every Queer person has seen these statements on our Facebook and Twitter feeds. • “That doesn’t belong here.” • “Think of the children.” • “This is a family-friendly event, and you have ruined it.” And my favorite: “What you do behind closed doors is fine, but I don’t want to see it.” We’re told to keep our queerness at home. It’s one reason we have Pride month. But every Pride season, another argument happens: that Leather, kink, BDSM, pet play, and the like should not be represented at Pride. In…

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From Sioux City to Iowa City (NEW: Long Live Community!)

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WHAT: Eclipse Nightclub Pride Party WHERE: Sioux City, IA WHO: Queens, performers and community members celebrating Pride at Eclipse Nightclub & Cabaret. WHEN: June 5, 2021 PHOTOS BY: Vanessa Nevarez (Divine) WHAT: A night out at Studio 13 WHERE: Iowa City, IA WHO: Rio S. Suave and Corey Alan, founders of Key City Pride, and Studio 13 personalities WHEN: June 12, 2021 PHOTOS BY: Rio S. Suave, founder of Key City Pride

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Strong, sexy, busting stereotypes: “From My Lips to Yours” explores kink and leather

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The lightbulb moment. We’ve all had them, and mine was when a man walked up to me 21 years ago and asked to lick my boots. I have many loves and passions. Flowers (they are so beautiful, and bring a smile to my soul). Horror movies (can we please get some scary ones? come on!).  Make-up (I own enough of it to make you laugh or cry). Oh… and I am a Leather Woman that loves to play. In fact, I’m your current Ms. Iowa Leather. I’m an educator, and…

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