Years ago Cindy Gallop was an account manager at GGT.
More recently. she used to be CEO of BBH in New York.
She was voted Ad Woman of the Year in New York by the NY equivalent of Campaign.
Recently I saw Cindy do a talk at TED.com
She was launching a project she feels strongly about.
A website called ‘Make Love Not Porn’.
Cindy spoke in front of several hundred top decision makers.
In cut-glass English pronunciation she explained that she was on older woman who liked to date young men.
She explained that ‘date’ was a euphemism for ‘have sex with’.
So Cindy liked to have sex with young men.
A lot of young men.
She didn’t see why talking about that should be a problem.
But what was a problem was that young men had their complete view of sex dictated by Internet porn.
An entire generation was growing up to believe that what they saw on porn sites was the way it should be.
They saw men with enormous penises, and women loving it.
So obviously that was the way it should be.
They saw women enjoying gagging on these enormous penises.
Then enjoying being spanked and sodomised.
Then enjoying men coming all over their faces.
Being that this was the total extent of most young men’s sex education, this was what they believed all women enjoyed.
And young women were also being educated by the same Internet porn as their boyfriends.
So they believed there must be something wrong with them if they didn’t enjoy it.
Cindy thought this was wrong.
Not that Internet porn was wrong.
She quite enjoyed that.
But she didn’t think it should dictate what everyone should, or shouldn’t, want.
It should be okay for different people to want different things.
So she set up a website to educate young people.
To open up the debate.
But TED was shocked by Cindy’s talk.
They wouldn’t make it available on their main website.
The subject matter was too contentious.
So Cindy persuaded them to make it available on YouTube.
Some of the comments it attracted were rational.
But some were barely literate insults.
The sort of thing you’d normally see written on the door of a public lavatory.
But Cindy didn’t get angry like I would have.
And she didn’t delete the comments like I would have.
Her attitude is that, “We see the world not as it is, but as we are.”
So she figured people who would make these sort of comments are actually having real problems.
Maybe she could help sort them out.
She’s had around 800 comments.
So far she’s replied to over 200 of them.
She replied personally to each insulting comment.
Asking them to contact her at her email address to continue the discussion.
As you can imagine, this is not what people who comment anonymously want.
So most of the debates ended there.
However, to illustrate her point she told me about one particular comment.
A guy had written something like, “Looking at a wrinkled old hag like you, who would want to come on your face anyway?”
Cindy, believing the guy only wrote that because of problems in his personal life, asked him to get in touch by email.
It turned out he was a 28 year-old virgin, living in Eastern Europe.
During their correspondence he told Cindy that he couldn’t get a girlfriend.
Cindy suggested he try Internet dating.
She gave him tips on how to proceed.
Recently he wrote back to thank her.
Saying he now had a girlfriend, and he was in love.
Cindy believes that a lot of male anger and problems come from testosterone and pent up sexual rage.
She says, “There aren’t many problems in the world that couldn’t be cured by blow jobs.”
I don’t agree.
I think there are lots of problems that couldn’t be cured by blowjobs.
But I think I learned from Cindy, maybe there are a lot of problems that could be cured that way.
Something else I learned was that it’s not always best to meet anger with anger.
Rage fuels rage.
It’s a purely emotional reaction.
Eventually the stronger side wins.
But even if you win you lose.
You lose control of yourself and the situation.
Cindy meets anger with understanding.
The rational mind.
That either dissolves the anger, because the rage has nowhere to go.
Or is solves the anger by helping address the problem.
I can’t always do that myself.
In fact I can’t do it very often.
But I wish I could.