Salvo 06.01.2023 4 minutes

‘Red-Pill’ Dating Content Is Toxic

USA, New Jersey, Jersey City, Bored couple sitting at bar counter

The Whatever podcast’s ick factor outweighs its usefulness.

“We men and women are in the same boat, upon a stormy sea. We owe to each other a terrible and tragic loyalty.”

I think about that quote from G.K. Chesterton whenever I’m scrolling through Instagram reels and the algorithm is hitting me up with provocative videos of Andrew Tate, “pick me girl” Pearl, and the new social phenomenon, the Whatever podcast.

If you’re a Millennial or Zoomer with Instagram or YouTube, I bet you’ve stumbled upon clips from Whatever, the bizarrely weird and trashy podcast that pries into the private dating and sex lives of young people.

The male host oddly takes minutes with pen and paper and asks sexually specific follow up questions to the guests, who are often young girls with OnlyFans accounts. There’s a life-sized mannequin with aqua hair casually sitting on the panel (a nod to futuristic sex dolls?), and listeners pay absurd amounts of money to ask wild questions. It’s obviously aimed at getting clicks—just look at their porny thumbnails—and increasing followers, but it’s also a sociological depiction of where hook up culture is, at least in California.  

I’m sure people of all faiths and political persuasions are invested in seeing where these conversations go. But much of the click bait is aimed at slut shaming these young women with large “body counts,” a concept only a heretically gnostic society would coin. While I am not defending today’s average modern woman, the show comes off as sexist and targets women in particular for today’s dating woes. Any show that harshly criticizes one sex while failing to critique the other is never going to heal the wounds between the sexes in this generation.

Yes, OnlyFans should disturb us as far too many young women willingly sell their dignity for cash. However, what’s seldom addressed, and what should perhaps disturb us even more, is a generation of men who forfeit their own dignity by purchasing a woman’s dignity. It’s not the corrupted supply that drives a market but in fact a corrupted demand. Men don’t realize the power they hold in ending this degeneracy.

The guys on the podcast are the worst—they are full of arrogance and follow the mantra of “rules for thee but not for me.” They point fingers at the ladies while lacking the humility to correct their own disordered sexuality and dating ethos. These guys in the manosphere hold strict standards for women but not for themselves, especially in the sexual realm, which promotes a sexual double standard that started the sexual revolution. They want virgins when they are anything but. They value purity but only in women, not in men, which comes off as hypocritical and a perverted fetish. Do they really think a woman who has waited would not also prefer a man who has? Maybe the chicks of OnlyFans don’t value a man who says no; it would go against their interest. But then again, these men claim they don’t want to date those women anyway. Ultimately, what strikes me while watching Whatever is that these men can’t handle seeing women mirror their own behavior. Get rekt.

What’s also glaringly apparent is they have mistaken natural instinct in its fallen state for natural law. They think a base, sexual urge gives license for them to do whatever they want. They claim to want a “traditional” society, but by what standard is “traditional” measured? By their morals, they really want a pagan, hedonistic society, not a traditionally Western one, deeply influenced by Christianity. Their “boys will be boys” worldview wouldn’t fly with the Fathers of the West, for boys won’t remain boys in Christianity—boys will become men.

A Christian society from an historical perspective would be considered “non-traditional” and culturally subversive (see St. Paul’s letter to the Ephesians). Pagan Rome saw it as “progressive,” because it called forth a high standard, calling men and women back to God’s original plan for sex and marriage before the fall. What these guys don’t want to acknowledge is their sexual weakness and the effort required to overcome it. Instead, they pretend their weakness is a strength, portraying a false bravado.

They say they want variety, but what they really want is surface-level sameness. But there is more variety to experience in the depth of one woman over the course of a lifetime than in all the body parts of all the women in the entire world. This “variety” prescription will never satisfy man’s desire, because man’s desire for the infinite can never be found in the finite. Only when man sees the finite beauty of one woman, which reflects the infinite beauty of the Creator Himself, will his desire for “variety” ever be quenched.

There’s no denying the popularity of Whatever. It features conversations and debates that are good for our culture to have, but the way in which they’re having these conversations is toxic. Conservatives keep finding their way onto this podcast, hoping to engage its audience because of the show’s reach, in an effort to promote the good. But by doing so, they legitimize the platform as good. More so, I wonder if those of us on the Right should even participate in the technological revolution of iPhone addiction and constant content absorption through social media, things we often lament. Maybe older means of transmitting information really are superior, and we should stop trying to make fetch happen.

The American Mind presents a range of perspectives. Views are writers’ own and do not necessarily represent those of The Claremont Institute.

The American Mind is a publication of the Claremont Institute, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, dedicated to restoring the principles of the American Founding to their rightful, preeminent authority in our national life. Interested in supporting our work? Gifts to the Claremont Institute are tax-deductible.

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