“There are certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life when a man takes his whole universe for a vast practical joke.” ~Herman Melville
The Ashley Madison website hack from a couple months ago has reached international headlines with the double lives it has exposed. The slogan, “Life is Short. Have an affair,” has been swirling through the news everywhere. As a former sugar baby and stripper, I was shocked by the response from American society. Affairs have been apart of life and marriage for thousands of years. However, the taboo is when people are forced to be honest about it? Not only with the ones they “love” the most, but publicly with the world. Government officials, federal employees, military members, and many more were faced with the glass houses they lived in shattering. Only to leave them freshly bleeding publicly in puddles of hypocricy.
Why the double standard? Why is adultery acceptable as long as we do not speak of it(Speak no evil, hear no evil?). Why would a younger single woman date a married man for free? Especially, knowing he is consciously untruthful on a regular basis. What makes the wives of these married men exposed in the Ashley Madison hack think these affairs do not involve sugar(aka money and gifts). Women check your bank account balances, younger women who are single do not date married men for free and remain silent and happy. This is the topic which has been tip toed around, even with all the international media buzz. We still remain unable to be completely honest about the situation revealed, let alone the real root issues.
If this public outing of an affair website was not deemed wrong(morally and/or ethically) then why did the CEO of Avid Life Media(operator of Ashley Madison) resign? Noel Biderman, long time CEO of Avid Life Media, resigned shortly after the hack went public. Who will bravely fill in his hot seat is still unknown, but should be interesting to follow.
Now let’s think strip clubs; how do they fit into the equation of infidelity? What would happen if all men had to be honest about gong to a strip club? Which is worse: a profile made online in the heat of the moment that never gets used or going to a strip club to blow off some steam where there is a monetary exchange for a tangible naked woman providing the physical/tangible service of a lap dance? Or what about the very extreme of creating a profile on Ashley Madison(or any other dating site) and going through with having an affair? The world used to be so black and white. However, with modern technology nowadays there is no guarantee of privacy to be found anywhere. We exist in the grey in this day and age where promises were once words taken seriously. Now we are adding public accountability to the equation of trust and love. Will we all pass the test? Can we be honest about our intimacy issues enough not to have to be publicly outed and shamed about our sexuality to tell our own truths.
“Some journalists have turned the focus of the criminal act against Ashley Madison inside out, attacking us instead of the hackers.” Avid Life Media.
The root issue of the Ashley Madison hack is the need for people in monogamous relationships(married or not) to not be truthful about their intimacy needs with their partner. Honesty and trust are the root of the issue. The fact a website for cheaters exists is just the result of supply and demand in this capitalist society. Ashley Madison was warned by the Impact Team, the group who hacked the website, with a warning entailing the potential future ramifications of a release of collected information. Ashley Madison and/or Avid Life Media did not take the threats seriously. Thus, they are already facing lawsuits from individuals who’s lives have been harmed by the release of this private information. Ironic huh?
Live John and Jane Does all over the nation are stepping forward to try to get back what they perhaps already took from themselves. Should those using an affair website really have the moral high ground legally in the Ashley Madison hack? Already, the information the Impact Team released about Ashley Madison users is helping people in the middle of divorces provide proof of adulterous behavior. Thus allowing for more power in the negotiation in the terms of divorce settlements. Divorce attorneys nationwide have to be throwing a party like little kids on Christmas.
As a society is this hack going to cause enough waves to make us think and change? Will we continue to sweep these sexuality and intimacy issues under the rug? Has this incident outed enough powerful people that we are willingly able to be honest enough to realize this is a root issue that needs to be addressed more openly in American society.
Let the discussion begin!