Sexual Intelligence
An Electronic Newsletter

Written and published by Marty Klein, Ph.D.

Issue #25 -- March 2002


1. Sexual Intelligence Topples Arizona Law
2. Voyeurism + Blame=Newsweek
3. Church Owes Everyone Apology
4. The Day That Changed America
5. Can Dickless Dad Still Parent?
6. New Reason to Swallow


* * * * * * * * * * * *

1. Sexual Intelligence Topples Arizona Law

Well, not exactly, but . . .

Readers will recall (issue # 23) that I recently testified in federal court, challenging an Arizona law making it illegal to send material considered "harmful to minors" to minors over the Internet. The law was designed to minimize the amount of sexual information Arizona teens and children could get, and meant that I'd be risking prosecution every time I published Sexual Intelligence.

A federal judge has granted the ACLU's motion, and entered a permanent injunction against Arizona enforcing this law. The victory is even more important for the precedent it may set for challenging other such state laws. I now better understand how the ACLU spends its donations--and why we should keep donating. Let's also appreciate the New York law firm of  Latham & Watkins, which donated about $100,000 of staff time to prosecute this case. I hereby declare a 30-day moratorium on lawyer jokes.

2. Voyeurism + Blame=Newsweek

You may have heard about Danielle Van Dam, the 7-year-old taken from her San Diego home last month and apparently murdered. It's an awful story. What makes it worse, however, is the way Newsweek and other media have turned this into a lewd morality tale.

Danielle's parents are swingers--they are non-monogamous and have sex with other couples. Incredibly, some commentators blame this lifestyle for Danielle's disappearance. If her parents weren't distracted by a sex party, opines Newsweek, they would have somehow known she was being kidnapped, and could have prevented it.

How sleazy can "journalism" get? Three hundred children are abducted from their homes each year. The majority have parents who are not swingers. How do Newsweek,, and other holier-than-thou's account for those cases? If 80% of the parents of abducted kids are monogamous, should we blame their "repressed lifestyle" for their inability to protect their children? While we're at it, let's remember that most of the parents of molested, beaten, and unhealthy kids are (or claim to be) monogamous too. Clearly, monogamy puts children at risk. There's a hot "lifestyle trend" story for USA Today.

3. Church Owes Everyone Apology

Former priest John Geoghan was sentenced to nine years in jail last week for fondling a 10-year-old parishioner in 1991. Putting him away is a good idea. One assumes he'll be too weak or too scared when he gets out to do any more damage.

But more than 130 people have claimed that Geoghan exploited them sexually during the three decades he was a Boston-area priest. Church records show people started complaining about him over twenty years ago. How did his employer--the Archdiocese of Boston--deal with these complaints?

They didn't fire him, threaten him, or prevent him from working with kids. They reassigned him. And they paid millions of dollars to settle cases quietly, part of the $300,000,000 the Catholic Church has paid to settle claims of clerical sexual abuse throughout America.

Geoghan's boss during this time wasn't "the Church," it was a human being. In 1980 his boss was Cardinal Humberto Madeiros, who ordered counseling for Geoghan--and then named him associate pastor of St. Brendan's. In 1984, Geoghan's boss was Cardinal Bernard Law, who responded to problems by moving Geoghan from St. Brendan's to St. Julia's. For almost twenty years Law was Geoghan's boss, and he made a series of terrible decisions--selfish, self-serving, dangerous to parishioners, and jealously protective of an institution failing in its mission. Law says he is now "haunted" by the victims he helped create, but he has not taken personal responsibility for his role. His employers apparently don't intend to require this of him, nor do they intend to take responsibility themselves. It's a chain of command that is long on regret, even longer on prayer, but very short on responsibility.

That, I suppose, is the attractive side of a religion that officially discourages people from making decisions for themselves. Non-marital sex, contraception, abortion, homosexuality: individual Catholics are told they may not make decisions about these matters, because they can't be trusted--that only the Church can. It isn't surprising, then, that when priests, bishops, and cardinals are caught making bad decisions, they aren't held accountable.

The Boston Archdiocese was doing one other thing while reassigning Geoghan, the known sexual predator. It was actively condemning gays, swingers, transvestites, and other practitioners of consensual, adult sex as immoral, perverted, and dangerous. Apparently, non-marital, non-heterosexual sex isn't for just anyone--only for priests.

4. The Day That Changed America

Imagine an America in which single adults are not allowed to buy or own condoms, diaphragms, or any other contraceptive device. Imagine someone deliberately getting arrested and jailed in order to overturn this medieval law. You were probably alive--it was only thirty years ago.

On March 22, 1972, the Supreme Court changed the law, giving unmarried adults the right to contraception in a case called Baird v. Eisenstat. So this month we celebrate that wonderful day, sobered by organized abortion clinic violence, the ubiquity of anti-choice propaganda (monopolizing the expression "pro-life", as if pro-choice people aren't), and the transformation of American sex education into abstinence training.

"Baird" was Bill Baird, Irish Catholic contraceptive activist. Baird set up the nation's first abortion clinic in 1964, risking a 10-year jail term. Without "Baird," there could be no "Roe." Without "Roe," you would be less free. So would your partner, your parents, your children, and every other American, including anti-choice Americans.

So Happy Anniversary, Bill, and thanks. You can send Bill an anniversary card (or donation) at

5. Can Dickless Dad Still Parent?

What is a man, and what is a father? A bitter custody dispute in Clearwater, FL shows why these have become extremely practical questions.

When Linda and Michael Kantaras started dating in 1988, he revealed he was born Margo, and had had her/his breasts, ovaries and uterus removed, while taking a series of masculinizing hormone treatments. Linda was pregnant by a boyfriend who had recently left her, and after she gave birth, Michael and Linda married and he adopted her son. Michael also adopted the daughter whom Linda conceived via artificial insemination in 1992. When Michael began seeing another woman in 1998 (is that just like a man, or what?), Linda told the kids their father was really female, sued Michael for divorce, and zealously pursued sole custody--despite everyone agreeing that he has been a good father.

The specific legal issue concerns the validity of their marriage. Linda's attorney claims that Michael is a woman, and so their marriage is void and the kids should be hers. Shouldn't the point actually be that the kids and their father love each other, that they need him and that he has always been there for them? Shouldn't the state strive to maintain the family's continuity as the marriage ends?

Not really, says the American Family Association. "In a custody case, we feel it is best for a child to be in a situation in which there is no gender confusion," said spokesman Ed Vitaglino. "Gender confusion" is code for "non-traditional, non-hierarchical" relationships. Gays, transsexuals, bisexuals, the non-monogamous--and the love they have for their children, their mates, and the families they create and cherish--are of no interest to the family values movement. For Linda Kantaras and the AFA, love and parenting are for the right kind of people--"us," not "them." How cruel, short-sighted, and ultimately dishonest.

Linda's obviously pissed that Michael cheated on her, which is understandable. She ought to take her pain like an adult rather than attempting to destroy her kids' lives (who's the unfit parent here?). Meanwhile, the AFA will gleefully sacrifice the Kantaras kids to support judicial actions that promote their fantasy of America. Too bad Linda isn't a good enough parent to realize that.

6. New Reason to Swallow

It's almost too good to be true. Now there are health benefits to fellatio--at least for couples who eventually want to conceive.

Australian scientists have discovered that semen contains a substance which helps persuade a mother's immune system to accept sperm. Regular exposure to this enzyme, especially orally, may thus help a woman conceive and also make her pregnancy safer and more successful.

University of Adelaide Professor Gustaaf Dekker describes this dramatic example of the body's evolutionary logic: "If there's repeated exposure to that signal," he says, "then eventually when the woman conceives, her cells will say, 'we know that guy, he's been around a long time, we'll allow the pregnancy to continue.'"

Will the multi-million dollar fertility industry share this information with clients? Or will they ignore this frankly sexual matter along with all the other sexual matters they underplay or ignore? Too many of their clients suffer the effects of sex on schedule, the shame of masturbating in a doctor's office, the low desire brought on by drugs like Clomid, the loss of sex for pleasure--typically without real counseling or even informed reassurance. But no sacrifice is too big in the quest for a recalcitrant pregnancy--especially when those sacrifices are made by someone else.

Besides, fertility clinics can't make a dime by advising "start giving him head" or "start eating each other." On the other hand they might get more patients--and not necessarily all of them wanting a baby.

You may quote anything herein, with the following attribution:
"Reprinted from Sexual Intelligence, copyright © Marty Klein, Ph.D. ("