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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Tuesday, May 30, 2023

The Dirty Bird: The ethics behind bucket list boning

Dear Alex,

Last weekend, my roommate met a young woman of a different race at a party and took her home. When I asked my roommate about his escapade, he said it was a “bucket list thing” and mentioned he is not normally attracted to people of that race. I thought this was disrespectful, but it was consensual and fun for both of them.

Am I right? Is he right? My moral compass is spinning!


Sexiled Due to Bucket List

Hello, SDBL, and thank you for your question. This one is certainly a toughie, let’s see if we can break it down accordingly.

People have sex for a variety of reasons. We can fuck for fun, for pleasure, to boost our egos and to experiment and discover what we like. None of these are exclusive—in fact each of these probably factors into the majority of time we spend deciding whether or not to bone our buddy at any given time.

Some people may argue having sex with someone of a different race is part of sexual experimentation. Maybe we’ll discover that we really like the way they look naked or the way their skin color contrasts with ours.

To some it may be offensive, but race play is also considered a kink by many sexual therapists and researchers. Race play includes situations in which people use their races as a medium for role playing. 

Some examples: A white person “selling” their black partner at a slave auction. A person dressed in Nazi garb “interrogating” their Jewish partner.

Famous BDSM educator Mollena Williams claims race play can be extremely empowering for the subjugated partner. According to Williams, the politically incorrect role play, assuming thorough communication and consent, can help people reclaim pride in their race because it allows the submissive, racialized person to stop the play whenever that person is done.

The power to end one’s own subjugation, Williams argues, can be key in making peace with one’s race.

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Again, race play requires communication about boundaries, safe words and after care, at the least. It can be unexpectedly triggering, so if we’re planning on engaging, we should start slowly, perhaps by working minor slurs into our routine sex play and slowly moving step-by-step over time toward a “master-slave” situation if we find we’re still interested.

However, race play must be consensual to both parties. Somebody sleeping with a person, just because they are of a different race, isn’t necessarily nonconsensual but it doesn’t sit quite well with me. 

I understand it was fun for all and all for fun, but I personally don’t think a Bucket List should look like this:

1.     Skydive

2.     Fall in love

3.     See the Northern Lights

4.     Pork an Asian girl

Anybody else see a problem here? Obviously, our reader does.

I want to be very clear: I am not discouraging experimentation or having sex with people of different races. I think humans should be able to have sex with whomever they want to, as long as the person gives a clear, informed, freely given and enthusiastic yes. So that makes it okay?

Let’s think about it this way: Would we be okay with someone using us to scratch off a number on our bucket list? If they wanted to sleep with someone who is super tall, someone who is ginger or someone who is a certain race and we fulfill that fantasy, will we be offended if we sleep with them and someone tells us why they were interested? It’s a matter of personal preference.

The way I see it, people use others for sex all of the time. It’s not illegal but it can certainly be immoral. Each of us has to decide for ourselves what “wrong” looks like for us, and act according to our own moral system. I know that probably isn’t the concrete answer anybody was expecting, but rest assured, SDBL, you could still give your roommate shit for his actions. That’s your call, not mine.

Wondering about race play or role playing in general? What about the ethics of your roommate? Email to get the answers you deserve. 

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