The statement from the CSUN Asian American and Women’s Studies about BigBabyKenny.com can be found here.
By inclination, training and profession, I am a social scientist and economist. When I see an interesting or unusual human behavior or see people in an unusual situation, unlike a priest who climbs into his pulpit and rails against the evils of the world, I am compelled to learn as much about the behavior, situations, and people involved and try to apply economic theory to understand what is going on and why the world is the way it is.
When U.S. blacks were emancipated, given no government assistance, and thrown into the marketplace to die or survive, I want to know not only how they fared but also explain how they were able to compete effectively with whites in certain labor markets.
When racist whites wrested control of local school boards and state governments in the post Civil War South and diverted school funds from black schools to white schools, I want to know not only how much was diverted but, also, why some schools diverted more and others diverted less.
When I first visited Thailand, I felt like an alien visiting another planet. Thailand is a Buddhist country, there is a king with actual power and moral authority, the country is poor, there is no social security net, people live as part of large mutually self supporting families, private property rights are weakly enforced, court decisions, even in criminal and capital cases, can be bought, the press is censored, and the rural poor are currently engaged in a determined fight to establish a real functioning democratic political system and wrest political and economic power from long established elites and the military. Thailand is the opposite of the United States in so many dimensions.
When I first visited Thailand everything about the place fascinated me. Over four years, I spent the summer and winter break there. I enrolled in language classes and over three years of study became functional in conversational Thai and am currently trying to learn to read and write Thai.
I made many Thai friends from all social classes and made friends with the many foreigners who live in Thailand.
I roamed far and wide, buying a small motorcycle to explore Bangkok, leased a car so I could explore outside Bangkok, and lived briefly in several small cities in the countryside where tourists never go and white people are a rarity.
And I went anywhere and everywhere in The Thailand Girl Scene and just like I learned about Thai culture, Thai politics, Thai food, Thai language, and Thai law, I learned as much as I could about dating, love, sex, and marriage in Thailand.
I experienced and learned a ton about The Thailand Girl Scene partly because I am single and unattached and partly because by inclination, training and profession, human behavior fascinates me. Call it practical and intellectual curiosity foot loose and fancy free in the real world.
And I started BigBabyKenny.com — the subject of the current controversy.
You can read the back story behind BigBabyKenny.com here:
BigBabyKenny.com was an open forum where anything and everything having to do with Thailand and The Thailand Girl Scene was written about and discussed. To give you an idea of the breadth and reach of the site here are just a few of topics of BigBabyKenny.com articles (some of which were submitted by readers and published on the site):
1. Are guys who prefer sex with cross dressing men (ladyboys) homosexuals or are they just bored heterosexuals?
2. How is the Thai mistress market organized and what are the nuts and bolts of its operation, i.e. if you are a rich Thai guy where do you go, how much do you pay, what do you get, and what are the backgrounds and motivations of the Thai girls who end up being mistressed?
3. When you get pulled over by Thai policemen on your motorcycle, how much bribe money are they expecting and what is the protocol for actually paying them off?
4. Is Japanese style testicle massage actually therapeutic?
5. Are custom fit condoms worth the money?
6. Where can you find the best English breakfast in Bangkok?
And there were many articles and much discussion about foreign men dating Thai women. Here is just a sampling of aspects of dating in Thailand that were written about and discussed on BigBabyKenny.com.
1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of dating and possibly marrying women who work in the nightlife areas?
2. What are the advantages and disadvantages of dating normal Thai woman, i.e. those that have had nothing to do with foreigners and the nightlife industry and where can you go to meet such women.
3. What is life like for the typical girl working in Bangkok?, e.g. what are their living conditions, how much money do they make in non-nightlife jobs, how much do they make if they work in bars, how much money are they required to send home to support their extended families and what happens to them when their nightlife careers are over. The posts and discussion even got down to level of discussing what percent of the girls working in the bars have to go back to their families to help out with the rice harvest.
4. Why do many Thai girls and women frequently prefer foreign men over their own countrymen?
5. And spread throughout the site were professional quality photos of everything. I took my camera and documented places that have never been documented before. There were pictures from the inside of Thai G-Clubs where rich Thai men find their mistresses, pictures of normal discos in towns near the Cambodian border where local Thai bands play their own version of Western alternative rock but with a Thai flavor, pictures from invitation only parties at private men’s clubs, pictures of street prostitutes, pictures of Thai guys street racing their modified motorcycles in impromptu drag races in the middle of the night, and pictures of Thai policemen taking bribes from motorists caught in minor traffic infractions.
The Daily News described BigBabyKenny.com as a site which promoted sex tourism and told foreign men where to find prostitutes in Thailand.
Anyone who spent 30 minutes browsing through the restaurant reviews, hotel reviews, bar, club, and disco reviews, and the articles and wide open discussion about The Thailand Girl Scene, would discover right away that BigBabyKenny.com was not a site which promoted sex tourism.
BigBabyKenny.com was also in no way a commercial enterprise. The site cost me about $100 a month to lease a private server and generated less than $25 in revenue over its’ whole run.
What BigBabyKenny.com did was provide a comprehensive, accurate, and photographically documented picture of love, sex, and marriage in a poor Third World Asian country.
Anyone reading the site, got an eye opening education about what it means to be a woman in a country and culture where not only do most women start off life poor but where most of the normal paths to upward economic and social mobility are blocked by age old laws, values, and government interference in the free market.
Although not intended to be an educational site, regular BigBabyKenny.com readers got the most accurate and comprehensive real life look at the nitty gritty details of women’s lives in Thailand available available anywhere on the internet, in books, and in magazines.
Plus parts of the site were hugely entertaining and funny — which explained why the site became so popular over time.
Anyone reading the site learned more about women’s issues in Asia than they get in a semester-long Women’s Studies or Asian studies course at most universities.
So I just don’t accept the idea pushed by your departments that BigBabyKenny.com “perpetuates the cultural prostitution of women in Thailand and beyond”.
And I don’t accept the idea pushed by your departments that the university should condemn sites like BigBabyKenny.com.
CSUN is a major university educating tens of thousands of students every year.
We are university professors not grade school teachers where our textbooks and course content has to be approved by local school boards and politicians with hidden agendas.
As university professors, we are free to tell it like it is. No Hidden Agenda, No Censorship, and No Bullshit was the BigBabyKenny.com byline but it could just as well be the byline of any properly taught university course.
We are university professors and our job is to expose students to the real world not present some type of sanitized, politically correct, cartoon version of the world that is palatable to western values.
As university professors our job is to expose students to the real world–the good, the bad and the ugly and provide them an intellectual framework, such as economic theory, so they can understand it better.
Life sucks for women in Thailand because of the poverty, culture, and legal environment.
BigBabyKenny.com depicted, analyzed, and discussed that life .
What’s wrong with that?