In Togo this week, the women's faction of a civil rights coalition is encouraging women to stage a week-long sex strike in order to demand political reforms. According to leadership of the group, Let's Save Togo, the strike, which began yesterday, will place pressure on Togolese men to demand the resignation of President Gnassingbe and put an end to a political system which allows unlimited electoral terms.
This campaign leaves me somewhat conflicted.
On the other hand, the sex strike is problematic for several reasons:
Secondly, any type of coercion, including sexual coercion, dilutes the moral force of the issue, itself. Using gimmicks and tricks to gain support is ineffective and generally weakens the cause in the long run.
For once, I don't intend to resolve this ambivalence. But I do wonder what the consequences of this kind of political activity are, and am left pondering that age-old question, "Do the ends justify the means?"